President's Message

Dear LRW Members & Supporters,
This year, 2024, marks 27 years of the League of Railway Women – and women continue to increase their visibility and impact in the railroad industry! LRW’s membership has expanded to over 2,500 active members, and 52 corporate partners. I’m thrilled to continue our mission of connecting and cultivating women in rail, which promotes diversity and improves the business results of the railroad industry.
As LRW President, I’m proud to promote the league’s work to advance the representation, recognition, and opportunities for women in the railroad industry by providing networking opportunities, sponsoring educational activities, and supporting mentoring partnerships. Our team of amazing volunteers has met the growing needs of our community with grace and strength.
LRW kicked off the year by presenting two educational sessions in Scottsdale, AZ, at the NRC Annual Conference, Railroad Workforce Challenges: Perspectives from Operations and How Woman-Focused ERGs Can Help and Partnering for Sustainability: We All Have a Role to Play
LRW and Progressive Railroading also presented the 2023 Railway Woman of the Year award to Kari Gonzales, President & CEO of MxV Rail. The LRW Woman of the Year Advisory Committee, composed of former Woman of the Year recipients, recommends an award recipient to the LRW Awards Committee, who provides the results to the LRW Executive Committee each year.  LRW Awards Chair, Denise Williams, shared that the advisory committee members had their work cut out for them this year, as so many highly talented women were nominated.  On a personal note, it was an incredible honor for me to present the award to Kari, as she and I began service together on LRW’s Board of Directors in 2017.
I’m excited to share that Lisa Tackach (Vice President), Amanda Patrick (Immediate Past President), Katie Kachel (Secretary) Nicole McKinstry (Treasurer) and Anne Whaley (Parliamentarian) join me on our 2024 Executive Committee. Our 2024 Board of Directors includes many wonderful returning directors-at-large, including Avalisha Fisher, Crystal Gitchell, Linda Hernandez, Christine Kalil and Mallory Moran, and welcomes new directors Kristin Canfield, Sarah Dimmich, Andrea Niethold and Shundrekia Stewart. I am proud to work with these board members, who reflect our membership’s diversity of experience and industry knowledge.
If you are a member of LRW, I encourage you to get involved; consider serving on a committee or helping at an event. My own career has been enriched and strengthened by my participation with the league in the last six years– and I’ve made a lot of great friends along the way.
If you or your company is not a member and you would like to learn more, please email us at or visit Our growth has been made possible only by the commitment and support of our corporate partners and their support of the advancement of women in the rail industry. Diversity and inclusion provide a great opportunity to strengthen companies, improve employee performance and productivity, increase competitiveness, and drive-up corporate value. I hope you will consider joining our growing list of corporate partners.
 It was wonderful to connect with many of you Scottsdale, AZ, at the NRC Annual Conference. I look forward to seeing many of you in Kansas City, MO, on March 26, 2024, for our LRW Symposium.  We will also host a special webinar with Kari Gonzales on March 4, 2024.  Additionally, LRW Board Member Shundrekia Steward, joined by LRW Board Member Emeritus Michele Malski, will be representing LRW at the Southwest Association of Rail Shippers Annual Meeting on March 5-6, 2024, in Galveston, TX.
Please watch your email, social media and our website,, for even more opportunities to connect with LRW and our membership in 2024.
Sarah Yurasko​
2022-2024 LRW President