2022 40 Under 40: Allison Mayos

Aug. 23, 2022
Allison Mayos, PMP, Property Team Lead, WSP Canada

One word to describe yourself: Passionate 

Fun fact about yourself: I really enjoy cooking and I am working on a YouTube channel to showcase my culinary skills. 

Favorite station or stop that you have ever visited or frequent (and why): The World Trade Center Subway Stop in NYC. The architecture is top tier and pays such great tribute to such an historic day. 

Allison Mayos started her career in the rail and transit industry 14 years ago as the executive administrative assistant to the senior vice president of the project management division for an engineering firm based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, that specializes in government infrastructure projects, including public transit. Under the guidance and mentorship of her boss, Mayos was quickly noticed for her ability to take on responsibilities outside of her role, conform effortlessly into high-paced environments, her eagerness to learn, apply and think outside the box and her strong leadership and interpersonal skills.  

Realizing there was a fruitful career for herself within the industry, combined with her enthusiasm to create, build and innovate within a spectrum of projects and programs that would help people in the communities she grew up in to live happier lives, she knew this was the right path for her. Mayos enrolled herself in the Project Management Certificate Program at Ryerson University in Toronto. Traveling after work to the school every night by two buses and the subway system, Mayos quickly knew firsthand how important it was to have a transit system that connected neighborhoods and communities across a region, even outside of peak hours. After completing the program, she successfully gained the Project Management Professional (PMP) certification which she still holds in good standing.     

Most recently, Mayos acquired her Real Estate License, which was obtained following her enrollment in the Ontario Real Estate Association College. During this program she gained knowledge on government regulations relating to development, urban planning, permitting and site plan approvals. These new attributes will contribute to her career in the transit industry, allowing her to apply this knowledge to new transit projects, especially those centered around transit-orientated development (TOD).     

One of her most impressive contributions to the industry started in March 2016, where she eagerly took on multiple positions for the largest transit project in North America at the time, the multibillion-dollar Metrolinx Eglinton Crosstown Light-Rail Transit Project in Toronto. First acting as the property acquisition manager, she was directly responsible in leading a department with the mandate of the management and acquisition of 300-plus properties and ensuring access to businesses and residents along this corridor was preserved during construction.   

She then discovered the need for what her next role would be and proposed to the project a development integration team that she would lead as the development integration manager. Here she created new processes and procedures that contributed to the success of TOD modernizations across the line. Lastly, she acted as commercial manager during the interim maintenance period where she was part of a team that innovated QR code technology for asset management, one of the first of its kind in the industry.     

Mayos currently works at WSP as a consultant contributing to various projects such as Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) Line One Capacity Enhancement Program, city of Ottawa LRT Project, Metrolinx’s RER Program and TTC’s Finch Station Early works. As a consultant, she continues to build strong relationships with various transit agencies and centers her work around property acquisition, third party approvals, TOD implementation and initiating a third-party team within WSP’s current rail and transit department.  

WSP has recognized her as a future leader within the corporation, and she will be attending the Great Traits Corporate Champions Program in the coming months. Being a great leader is something Mayos prides herself in and continues to work towards every day by ensuring her team members are provided with an environment in which they feel like their contributions, ideas and aspirations are acknowledged and encouraged. Mayos is also committed to taking an active role in the rail industry by participating in various industry events, webinars, courses and conferences. And she contributes her time and effort to subjects that support women’s leadership by attending events for the Women in Transportation community, organizing her own personal events for female friends who are focused on goal orientation and volunteering at local women shelters. She does this with the hope of encouraging other women to get involved in industries they may have shied away from and removing barriers for all to follow.     

Colleagues say that over the years, Mayos has embodied a sense of purpose, passion and vocation; she is a knowledgeable and dedicated person who would meet deadlines and take care of business under pressure. 

What do you enjoy most about your job?   

I really enjoy being part of something in which you can physically see your works come to life and know that the outcome of those works will be used by so many people for the years to come. 

What’s the most challenging part of your job?   

The most challenging part of my job is managing expectations and relationships with those who I work with. It is also one of my most favorite. I really enjoy connecting with people, engaging in insightful conversations and coming up with creative ideas. 

Accomplishment you’re most proud of and why?   

Being part of the Eglinton Crosstown Project was a huge learning experience and one that I am most proud of. The team I was a part of was comprised of young professionals early in their career and we all were determined to make a name for ourselves within the industry, organization and the project itself. We were able to contribute to the project in ways no one had originally imagined. 

Best advice/tip/best practice to share from your area of expertise?   

Listen more than you speak, and any deal is only a good deal if both parties leave feeling as if they have won.