Protenus Employee Values Spotlight
Protenus Employee Spotlight - Gretchen Ward

Gretchen Ward, Principal Engineer

At Protenus, the values of Build Trust, Be Human, Live (Em) Powered and Onward Together are baked into all that we do. We continuously look for new and rewarding ways to integrate these eight values into our work, for the ultimate benefit of employees, customers, and the company.

For January, we are excited to announce that Gretchen Ward, Principal Engineer, who is a member of the Engineering team at Protenus has been nominated for the Employee Values Spotlight for embodying our shared company values.

Gretchen has done an amazing job on the UI team, fulfilling all aspects of her role and then some. On a day-to-day basis she will adeptly handle her own development work while taking time to mentor others and set a strong standard for our deliverables. She has a strong grasp for the bigger picture of our product and future of our team, illustrated by her technical deep-dives and creation of inclusive and collaborative interview stages. She is quick to inject humor into the team, jumps into our codebase, and demonstrates all of the Protenus values which make her a great asset for this organization. Thanks for all you do Gretchen!

Q&A with Gretchen

What’s your role at Protenus, and what do you do?

I started out as a Staff Engineer at Protenus about two years ago, and now I am proud to say I’m a Principal Engineer at Protenus leading the Frontend / UI team! In an engineering context, I help research, design, plan, and build just about all aspects of the core user facing application at the company. 

What do Protenus’ values mean to you?

Being empowered as an engineer to make decisions and working on teams with high trust is incredibly important to me. None of us can do the important work we do day-to-day alone. Protenus’ values really encompass the importance of curiosity & empowerment, communication, passion, courage & vulnerability which I think are critical to us doing our best work.

As Protenus celebrates their 10 year anniversary in 2024, what makes you most proud about working at Protenus?

My answer is two-fold: I’m proud to work for a company whose product(s) genuinely have a quantifiable positive impact on people’s lives. I’m also proud to work for a company that knows the road to success is rarely a straight line. To reach our goals there are ups and downs but what’s important is that we continue to make decisions that drive positive impact for our clients and our organization.

What's your favorite part of your job?

Learning and sharing what I learn with others!

What challenges have you faced as a woman in a male-dominated discipline (Technology / Engineering)? And what advice would you give to other women who’d like to follow in similar footsteps?

I’ve been an Engineer for over a decade now. Breaking into the industry was hard especially because I came from a non-traditional background, I studied art and design in college. Staying was harder, as a woman and a person of color you consistently have to prove your ability, aptitude and your work doesn’t just have to be ‘good’ but ‘excellent’ to advance. I especially have a great sense of empathy for these groups trying to break into the industry today. To any woman and especially woman of color thinking of being a software engineer or questioning their place in the industry I would say: never ever doubt yourself, you are smart, you are qualified, keep going.