Spark Award

Irene Hodor

Exxon Mobil Corporation

For tirelessly building better leaders and stronger teams; for leading with courage, empathy, and emotional intelligence; and for championing countless women and girls to develop their potential in STEM.

Irene Hodor is the staffing and development manager for safety, security, health, and environment at Exxon Mobil Corporation, a leader who advocates women’s advancement in service of the company’s strategic business objectives. She is recognized for a courageous leadership style, genuine concern for others, and for her influence across organizational and geographic boundaries.

As ExxonMobil renewed its focus on effective leadership, Hodor was quickly identified as a catalyst for promoting leadership, diversity, and employee advancement. She is a key member of the network of leaders who are implementing the new corporate leadership framework focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion. She also dedicates her time to ExxonMobil’s SWE team by leading its awards program.

Throughout Hodor’s career, her mentorship has influenced employees and departments throughout the corporation. She continues to mentor women and men at various stages of their careers across the corporation, helping them transition from technical individual contributors to leadership roles, counseling them on work/life balance, and networking across the corporation.

For example, when in Kazakhstan from 2015 to 2019, Hodor was employed by ExxonMobil while seconded into a joint venture guiding the North Caspian Operating Company (NCOC). Her ability to mentor, influence, and lead others was quickly recognized, and she was soon reporting directly to a senior-level Kazakh national with direct ties to the president of Kazakhstan.

She immediately sought out opportunities to empower Kazakh women — no ordinary feat in a country with strong traditions and very few women in technical or leadership roles. Hodor worked to reinforce the importance of a thriving women’s network, drove the development of its charter, and established committees and an advisory board. She was instrumental in establishing its mentoring program and formally mentored several women who went on to senior technical and leadership positions. Today, the NCOC Women’s Network is a viable group of women leaders, due in large part to Hodor’s early vision and drive for its success.

Outside of ExxonMobil, Hodor is a champion for the advancement of women and young girls. An active SWE member since university, she was president of both the Clarkson University and Los Angeles sections. She has held several other SWE positions, always looking for opportunities to mentor while establishing programs that promote mentoring for professionals and collegians. She also created a hallmark Introduce a Girl to Engineering program at Torrance Refinery.

Hodor earned a B.S. in civil engineering and environmental management at Clarkson University and was named a 2008 SWE Distinguished New Engineer. She is active in her local community through United Way; enjoys volunteering with her husband and two daughters at the Houston Food Bank; and is currently president of the local theater booster club.