Fostering an Inclusive Workplace: Q&A with Project Engineer Beth Bunnetto
“Living out our core values, the Constitution of Gray, is the foundation of our business,” said Stephen Gray, president & CEO of Gray, Inc. “They are an anchor for us—a way we show new people in the business how to keep their eye on the right things.”
Gray is a place where all are welcome and respected. Throughout our history, we have seen the fruit of a company that stands strongest when we embrace the full spectrum of humanity. Gray celebrates all of those who have paved the way for an inclusive and diverse workforce, and reflects on how we play a role in fostering a world where all feel valued, find belonging, and develop fruitful careers.
We spoke with Beth Bunnetto, project engineer with Gray Southeast, on the Gray culture, fostering an inclusive workplace, and what Pride Month means to her.
Describe your normal workday–your “day in the life.”
I work full-time with Gray Southeast in Birmingham, AL. My day is filled with Excel spreadsheets and coffee. I am learning something new every day, and I wouldn’t want it any other way!
What do you enjoy most about your work?
I love my team here in Birmingham. They really focus on learning and teaching all aspects of the job. There is never a question that goes unanswered.
What has been your most memorable experience since being a part of the Gray Family?
My most memorable experience thus far has been being invited out with the team before I officially started. After accepting the position, I was immediately a part of the family and made to feel like I was home. As a new team member, that is all I could have asked for.
What does Pride Month mean to you?
Pride Month is a remembrance of all the queer people that came before me—recognizing their fight for inclusion and acceptance and continuing that fight. Pride Month is also about visibility. I am lucky enough to be surrounded by a team and friends that know and accept me for who I am; not everyone has that same supporting group. I want to be visible and out at work so that other queer people know that they can be too.
What does having a welcoming and inclusive workplace look like to you?
A welcoming workplace is much more than just Pride Month in June. It’s about changing the way our companies operate and how we speak. There are easy things that can be done to make queer people feel safer and more included. These small changes that help people of the LGBTQ community feel more included can make a huge difference.
What’s the most valuable advice you’ve ever been given?
My best friend’s mom once told me I should always be myself and if I lost friends because of it, they weren’t meant to be in my life anyway.
In one word or phrase, how would you describe Gray?
Gray is a full-time family that also does some great work on the side.
If someone was visiting where you live, what would you recommend to them as a “must-do?”
Some must-visits in Birmingham are hiking the “King’s Chair” in Oak Mountain Park for an amazing view! Trim Tab is my favorite local brewery. You can also eat some great food at Ocean, a seafood and oyster bar.
For more information on career opportunities at Gray, visit www.gray.com/careers.