The American Boiler Manufacturers Association (ABMA) Board Vice Chair, Nancy Simoneau from Groupe Simoneau, recently sat down with ABMA Marketing Director Jayson to discuss the newly formed Women in the Boiler Industry professional community.

The discussion previewed the community’s inaugural panel and networking luncheon, scheduled for May 2 at BOILER 2024 and sponsored by Vector Systems. 

The panel will be moderated by Shaunica Jayson and includes Kimberly Adkins, chief boiler inspector for the Commonwealth of Virginia and the only female U.S. chief boiler inspector; Teresa Melfi, a Lincoln Electric technical fellow who holds over 50 welding patents; Tricia Staible, ABMA board member and president of Robinson Fans; and Simoneau.

“Your gender may define your identity but your passion and engagement in life will make you become your true self,” Simoneau said. “Let the boiler industry celebrate our successes of the past and be inclusive to all who want to advance it, regardless of who they are.” 

Jayson approached Simoneau over a year ago to help ABMA start this community, and Simoneau enthusiastically volunteered.

“I’m willing to be a part of this because I see the younger females coming in, and I see the pressure on them. They are educated, they do have big goals, but yet they still have to bear on the mental charge of the household,” Simoneau said. “How can you navigate between your personal life as a mother, as a wife, as a grandmother, and be active in the professional part of your life? Together, we can share some good insight and be better and more comfortable within our roles.”

Emphasizing her support for Simoneau, Jayson asked her why she believes it’s important for WIBI to be open to all, not just women. 

WIBI does not function as an isolated affinity group, recognizing men’s involvement as peers and partners as part of a holistic picture for advancing women in the boiler industry.

“We need males and the males need us,” Simoneau argued. “I’d rather have an all-inclusive approach than a fighting approach. We aren’t one against the other. We’re just there to make sure that we can all shine and be passionate about what we’re doing as a living.”

“We have to go about it this way,” Jayson agreed, noting there’s a growing number of women in the boiler industry. 

Simoneau added that WIBI will be a safe space for people from all backgrounds, including the LGBT+ community, and all occupations. 

“It’s not only for the C-suite. It’s for all the females in our industry, everybody from the welder, from the technician, commissioning technician, or whoever is working and wants to share with us and feel safe,” Simoneau said.

Jayson said the WIBI professional community announcement received an overwhelmingly positive reception, with many noting “it is time.”

“I’m thrilled to be moderating this panel with such esteemed females who have achieved such success in the boiler industry,” Jayson said. “It is an amazing lineup.”

“We are coming from different avenues in the industry and I think we can inspire some other females to see where they want to contribute and make their place within the industry. I’m looking forward to this panel,” Simoneau said, noting her fellow panelists are trailblazers.

the women in WIBI

WIBI is a safe space for people from all backgrounds, including the LGBT+ community, and all occupations.
WIBI is a safe space for people from all backgrounds, including the LGBT+ community, and all occupations.

“You will have be able to talk to all of us and understand how we made our way to where we are and also some traps that we fell in, and how we were able to get out of those traps, and how everyone can avoid them,” Simoneau concluded.

For more details, visit and for more information on the WIBI Panel and Luncheon at BOILER 2024, visit the WIBI webpage on 

Members of the boiler industry can also join the WIBI professional community on LinkedIn to digitally network, and “keep the conversation going,” Jayson concluded.