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Women Are Drilling Their Way Into Ohio's Male Dominated Oil And Gas Industry

ashley Raff ODNR
ODNR Screenshot
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Ohio Department of Natural Resources
Ashley Raff speaks about her experiences as a woman in the oil and gas industry. Raff is a Natural Resources Administrator for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Oil and Gas Division, and she recently shared her story in a webinar for ODNR's "She's a Force of Nature" series.

Female employees like Ashley Raff make up 16% of oil and gas industry workers according to a 2018 report. Raff remembers when she was the only woman on a drilling rig in 2012.

Female employees make up only sixteen percent of oil and gas industry workers, according to a 2018 report by the Petroleum Equipment and Services Association.

One of these women is Ashley Raff, a Natural Resources Administrator for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Oil and Gas Division.

Raff says when she started working as a geologist on a drilling rig back in 2012, her coworkers were almost all male.

“I could tell that I was one of the first women people [had] seen on location. And it was a little intimidating,” she said.

Raff said that she worked to excel at her job and ignored any passing comments from her male peers.

“In no time I was able to earn their respect, from everyone, and I was just seen as another hand on location,” she said.

More and more women are entering the energy industry, includingleadership positions. An S&P global report showed that the share of women on the boards of oil and gas companies doubled between 2009 and 2019.