Written by The Business Journal Staff
Jennifer Pike-Owens, Chief Operating Officer
TETER Architects and Engineers
UC Santa Barbara – Bachelor of Arts, political science, minor in public service
Family: Married with two boys
How did you first get involved in the architecture and engineering industries, Jennifer?
My father was an electrical designer for PG&E, so I was exposed to engineering from an early age.
What are the biggest changes you’ve seen in the field during your career, Jennifer?
• Sustainability/Green Building Design (LEED)
• Energy Efficiency (Title 24)
• 3-D Modeling (BIM)
What are the most important issues facing the industry today, Jennifer?
• Attracting top talent, retaining current staff, increasing productivity with existing tools, and rapidly bringing new staff up-to-speed.
• Achieving a business-minded company culture from a workforce that is more focused on practicing architecture and engineering.
• Delivering our quality product even faster and more cost-effectively to clients.
Do you think your industry is still male-dominated and if so, why, Jennifer?
Yes, statistically the number of women entering architectural and engineering careers continues to be low in comparison to men (similar in science and math fields). However, at TETER I’m proud of the growing number of women we have in all three offices. Currently two partners are women, including myself. Our mechanical, electrical, and structural engineering teams and architectural studio all have very talented and exceptional women.
What advice would you give a young person today considering an architecture and/or engineering career, Jennifer?
Accept the advice and experience of your predecessors. Never stop investing in yourself because learning is a life-long commitment. Be a team player. Don’t be afraid to take risks and fail. And always be ready to raise your hand for an opportunity.
What was the best advice you ever received, Jennifer?
Make a conscious decision to remove the word “can’t” from your daily vocabulary and success will come exponentially.
Who did it come from?
Who has been the biggest influence on your career?
Glen Teter, CEO and founding partner of TETER.
What are your roots in the Central Valley?
Grew up in the small farming community of Riverdale.
What was your very first job, Jennifer?
Working for Summers Engineering.
What did you learn from it, Jennifer?
Engineers are very intriguing people.
What do you like to do in your spare time, Jennifer?
I enjoy spending time with my family and friends. My two sons and husband are extreme sports enthusiasts. I also enjoy target shooting, which helps me relieve stress, and wine tasting at local wineries.