Women in Construction

An update from AEM president Megan Tanel


February 16, 2022
By Megan Tanel
Presented by:
Crane and Hoist Magazine
Women in Construction

Renewal. The definition is simple, an instance of resuming an activity or state after an interruption.

I think we can all agree that 2020 and 2021 interrupted many of our plans. For me, this word helps to focus on the positives in our lives and I believe it describes our industry and our path forward as we welcome a new year and put the past two years behind us.

I’m Megan Tanel, the new president of the Association of Equipment Manufacturers. I joined AEM in 1995, becoming senior vice-president of Exhibitions and Events in 2016. In 2020 I became senior vice-president for the Construction and Utility Sector. I became president of AEM on Jan. 1, 2022, after the retirement of Dennis Slater.

In my previous role in leading AEM exhibitions and events, I helped launch World of Asphalt in 2001, served as show director for The Utility Expo (formerly ICUEE), and served as show director of North America’s largest trade show, CONEXPO-CON/AGG, growing overall trade show revenue 80 per cent over 12 years. I also reworked the long-term agreement to keep CONEXPO and CON/AGG together. Simply put, one place for our industry to gather.

You might be asking, what is AEM and how do they impact me and my business? AEM is the leading organization in North America advancing construction and agriculture equipment manufacturers and their value chain partners in the global marketplace. In enabling growth together, AEM and its members build momentum for the equipment manufacturing industry and the markets it serves.

RELATED: AEM president receives IAEE lifetime achievement award

128 years ago, our industry segments came together to create a fundamentally more powerful voice and advocate for the off-road equipment manufacturing industry. Companies participating in AEM work together for the betterment of the industry and public needs, at the state, national, provincial and international levels. In addition, we work collaboratively in DC with sister associations NRMCA, NSSGA, NAPA, ARTBA and AGC on legislation that impacts you. Late last year, we held an AEM fly-in right before the vote to approve the Highway Bill to make sure our congressmen and woman knew the impact of the bill and how it would raise our economy and protect us with safer roads and bridges.

So how does this impact you, and your business?

If you are reading this, you are most-likely familiar with our trade shows – CONEXPO-CON/AGG, The Utility Expo and World of Asphalt and the co-located AGG1, which will be held in Nashville this year from March 29 to 31. We are the organization responsible for management of these best-in-class events that showcase the latest in equipment, education and networking opportunities.

AEM’s Strategic Plan

In addition to trade shows and the opportunities they afford you and your employees, AEM’s Strategic Plan also focuses on several other goals that impact you.

These goals include:

  • Building a positive perception of our industry (think showcasing how our industry impacts our quality of life)
  • Accelerating industry growth (think advocacy and attracting people to our industry);
  • Supporting and empowering member company decision-making (think innovation and data); and
  • Facilitating members’ customer-facing efforts (think trade shows and the opportunity for continuing education, networking opportunities and seeing  all the latest equipment in one place).

In 2022, these goals will continue to guide our efforts to support and advocate on behalf of our member companies and our industry – which ultimately supports and impacts you and your business.

Our ability to achieve what we want to accomplish as an association will come down to how successful we are at being a voice for our industry, how well we spread the message of equipment manufacturing’s role in making the equipment that builds our communities and feeds our world, and how effectively we communicate the industry’s contributions to the overall economic well-being of our country.

It has been three years since we all gathered at World of Asphalt & AGG1, and I’m thrilled we’re bringing the asphalt and paving industry back together again. I hope to see you at World of Asphalt, at the Nashville Music City Center in Nashville, Tenn.