Cheyenne The Welder

#WomenofSteel Interview with Cheyenne Ruether

Cheyenne The Welder

As a woman in the trades, have you ever faced discrimination?

I don't think there is ANY woman who hasn't faced

discrimination in typically male-dominated trades. The

key is not to let rude, crude & threatened individuals

deter you from accomplishing what you want within

these industries. I've lost count of the times that someone

initially doubted me based on my appearance and being

a woman. Most women on the shop fl oor have to work

even harder to “prove themselves” and are often

discriminated against or harassed daily.

 

Do you find that employers are becoming more

open to hiring women as time goes on?

From when I fi rst got into the trades to now, I've seen a

considerable spike in women getting into the industry

which is great! I only hope more are encouraged and

motivated enough to understand exactly where they want

to be in life. It’s hard work but comes with great rewards

and future opportunities. Using my work as an example;

it’s landed myself and others on a TV series for the

Discovery and History channels which wasn’t something I ever

thought I'd be interested in doing.

 

What would your message be to women going into the trades?

Support each other, show up, work hard, be relentless and never

lose track of why you started in the first place. You will face

challenge after challenge, but when you see your finished product

and feel immense pride in your work and dedication, it opens up

many doors for you in the industry. There is so much flexibility

and satisfaction in knowing how to fix and create something with

your two hands and a few tools.

 

Are you working on a passion project at the moment?

If yes, tell us a little bit about it.

Yes! Expanding from only doing skilled labor and TV but then

teaming up to create and operate a successful business has

been intense. This multi-million dollar project has taken pieces

of knowledge from everything that I have learned over the

years from my academics to hands-on experience in industry.

The Official SAW Escape in Las Vegas has been a lot of hard

work that allows me to use many different skillsets.

 

How did you first get involved with the industry?

I have always had a connection to anything I could drive, especially

classic cars. As a child, my Dad and brother were trained in small

engine repair and as mechanics. Naturally, I wanted my very own

trade; my choice just happened to involve grinding, repairing,

welding and painting vehicles which was a massive bonus in

my books. I first started banking hours towards my journeyman

certification in Grade 10 by doing RAP (Registered Apprentice

Program). This allowed me to gain credits towards my diploma

while earning wages for a full semester in the midst of taking

additional correspondence classes. By the time I was in Grade

12, I had doubled the hours needed to attend technical training

and received multiple scholarships upon graduation for my evaluation

and dedication to the Auto Body trade. It felt fitting and

rewarding to pursue this as a career path into adulthood.

 

What education program did you attend?

I attended NAIT (Northern Alberta Institute of Technology) to

get my Red Seal Journeyman Certification when I was 19 years

old while working at a collision shop in Edmonton, Alberta. I

received SATA Refinisher of the Year Award (2011) as a top painter

in my graduating class. I went on to train new apprentices

at various shops where I worked. After I had a trade under my

belt, I decided to make the change and start doing customs and

restorations full time as opposed to doing it as a side business.

 

What has been one of your best memories or

experiences while working in the industry?

It’s difficult to narrow it down to just one experience

because it has been rewarding for many different reasons.

There are builds that I have worked on that have been featured

at SEMA for multiple years and of course, having 12 episodes

air over the span of a year was a unique experience and

definitely a wild ride. After I finished up all 12 insane rat rod

builds with my Discovery Channel contract; I moved from

Alberta to Nevada to pursue the next venture with my partner.

 

What is your favorite thing about working in the industry?

Breaking barriers! The flexibility and gratification of creating

artwork with classic and custom cars, hotrods & rat rods. I

love putting a smile on my customers’ faces by completely

changing their vehicle for the better! However, taking that

knowledge and having it for my own use is invaluable. I

wouldn't trade the time that I’ve invested in the industry

because I have always found a way to make it fresh and

exciting for me!

 

Tell us one fun fact about yourself.

The entire time I was doing my Auto Body apprenticeship

and training, I was modeling professionally as well (runway,

shoots, music videos, as well as managing talent and models

at two different record labels). It made it difficult to juggle

both careers as I lived an hour commute outside of the city

and would have to go from filthy coveralls to dolled up in

heels in a very short period. A few times, I’d have to pull a

quick rinse and change at the shop then run out of the

bathroom like batman hoping not a single soul would see

me so I wouldn't get roasted for a week after!

 

 

CHEYENNE RUETHER

International Actress/Model & Journeyman Red Seal Auto Body Refi nisher - Head of Product Development @ SAW Escape Room.

 

A native of Edmonton, Alberta, Cheyenne started her career in the automotive industry in 2007 doing collision, restorations custom car building, and

refi nishing. During her time working as a refi nisher, she also worked in the entertainment industry appearing on TV shows like Vegas Rat Rods, in

music videos, movies, and other promotional events.

 

Cheyenne has worked with numerous brands suchas PPG, Sherwin Williams, NEXXA, Dupont, SIKKENS, Matrix, ENDURA, LIMCO, UNO, GENESIS, H.O.C.,

ENVIROBASE, CREATIX, POR 15, LINCOLN, and SATA to name a few.

 

Currently residing in Las Vegas, Cheyenne remains a hot rod and classic car junkie and is busy expandingher already impressive resume by producing

3 movies and opening a multi-million dollar large-scale live attraction in Las Vegas.