Mona Moorman, Manager, Rail Transportation
Domtar rail transportation manager Mona Moorman was recently named president of the Southeast Association of Rail Shippers (SEARS), an advocacy group serving Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. Its members represent such areas as heavy and light industry, mining, consumer products, forest products, agriculture, port operations and service organizations.
Moorman started attending regular meetings in the late 1990s. After a few years, one of her railroad contacts, who was also involved in the organization, suggested she become a member. She joined as secretary treasurer and rotated through various board positions every two years until being named the organization’s first-ever female president last October.
The professional growth gained through her SEARS involvement has helped Moorman in her role at Domtar tremendously.
“I’ve made a lot of contacts there,” she says. “There were times we were looking for certain types of rail cars for our wood procurement. Before being involved in SEARS, I was just cold calling people. Then after I started going to SEARS, I made so many contacts and met so many people that it became an invaluable asset to me and my job.”
Today, Moorman says, the industry and the organization have far more female representation and women leaders than when she started and was often the only female in the room.
“I was never treated as anything besides a peer and an equal,” she says. “I was raised to believe you can be what you want to be. My advice to females is if something fits with you personally and professionally, say yes and try it. It can only put you further ahead with the contacts you make and the people you’ll get to meet.”
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