Meet Five Colorado Women Breaking Ground in a Male-Dominated Industry

Feb 2, 2022

Meet Five Colorado Women Breaking Ground in a Male-Dominated Industry


From left to right: Leslie Moen, co-founder, owner, and president, Bridgewater Homes; Linda Purdy, Colorado division president, Tri Pointe Homes; Carla Ferreira, director of development, The Aurora Highlands; Ricarda Dietsch, area president mountain region, Taylor Morrison Homes.

Traditionally dominated by men, women represent only 10.9 percent of the construction industry. Even smaller, is the number of women on the front lines of a job site — only one for every 100 employees in the field. But The Aurora Highlands is breaking that mold. Five women hold vital leadership roles on the project — one of Denver’s largest residential developments currently underway just south of Denver International Airport in Aurora. Carla Ferreira is the director of onsite development and a principal for the master-planned community. Working alongside Carla in impactful leadership roles are four other female executive homebuilders represented in The Aurora Highlands.

When complete, The Aurora Highlands will expand the metro area to the east of DIA and add 12,500 residential units, four new schools, 21 miles of trails, 20 neighborhood parks, recreational facilities, libraries, outdoor entertainment venues, shops and restaurants, and is a part of the Aerotropolis region that will add 170,000 jobs to the metro area.

Carla leads the marketing and sales teams at The Aurora Highlands, inspiring the direction of various projects there. As the principal developer, she also maintains close relationships with the development’s homebuilders, to both bring them to The Aurora Highlands and foster the relationship throughout the building process. Her background in fine art also helps to inform the public art for the parks around the development.

Carla is an active leader in the community as a board member of the Aurora Police Foundation, which supports the operations of the department with grants for officer training, community involvement, supplies and equipment; a board member of the Aerotropolis Regional Transportation Authority, which oversees the budget and plans as it relates to transportation infrastructure and improvements for 3,000 acres south of DIA; and is a member of Colorado Concern, a CEO-based organization devoted to investing in and promoting pro-business environment through the political process. She also recently won a Young Leader Award at the Denver MAME Awards. The awards are hosted by the Home Builders Association (HBA) of Metro Denver and honors professionals in Denver’s residential building, design and real estate industry.

Of the seven homebuilders slated for The Aurora Highlands, more than 50 percent of them are led by women. Meet the women Carla is working with at The Aurora Highlands:

Leslie Moen – Co-Founder and President, Bridgewater Homes

Leslie is developing and implementing Bridgewater Homes’ marketing and sales plans and programs. She is working with strategic partners on business development, new construction site analysis, architectural design, and contracting negotiations. Leslie’s comprehensive real estate industry expertise serves home buyers across Northern Colorado and the Denver metro area.

Linda Purdy – Colorado Division President, Tri Pointe Homes

Linda is leading the direction of all land acquisition operations and personnel for the Colorado Division of TRI Pointe Homes. She has been in real estate for more than 20 years with TRI Pointe, Richmond American Homes, Centex Homes, and Hamon Contractors. Linda holds a law degree from DU and is a highly accomplished and resourceful top land acquisition vice president and expert in the Denver market.

Ricarda Dietsch – Area President Mountain Region, Taylor Morrison Homes

Ricarda is leading the Mountain Region of Taylor Morrison Homes and working closely with The Aurora Highlands on the Taylor Morrison buildout in east Denver. She has held various leadership and executive roles in the real estate industry and is a board member of HomeAid Colorado and HBA Metro Denver.

Liesel Cooper – National President, Century Communities, Inc. 

Liesel is leading the Western US division and home building projects for Century Communities, Inc., a top 10 US homebuilder. Liesel has held various executive roles at kb Homes, Richmond American Homes, Meritage Homes and now Century Communities, Inc.

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