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This month’s Employee Spotlight is…

Lauren McFeeley – QA Manager

Lauren McFeeley - April 2024 Employee Spotlight

1. Where did you grow up? Where do you reside now?

My family moved around a lot when I was growing up, but we always ended up back in Pittsburgh, PA, so that’s where I call home. I live in Ithaca, NY now. We moved here 20 years ago for my husband’s job.

2. What did you want to be when you grew up (when you were a child)?

I really, really wanted to be a marine biologist. I love the ocean and sea creatures. Jacques Cousteau was my hero! My dad was a software engineer and encouraged me to be a developer. I should have listened to him.

Lauren and her family in the Adirondacks.

Lauren and her family in the Adirondacks.

3. What guided you into the energy efficiency industry?

Chance! A friend put me in touch with PSD, who was looking for a proposal writer at the time, something I did a lot of at a former job. Conservation and natural resources have always been important to me. I’m glad to have the opportunity to be a part of this industry.

4. What does a day in the life of Lauren at PSD look like?

Meetings! Meetings with teams, meetings with our director, meetings with clients. A good chunk of my time is spent ensuring the work of the eleven programs that currently make up the QA Division, is accomplished – that contractual goals and requirements are met, and challenges are addressed.
My favorite days are ones where I can dig into a research project or brainstorm ways to work smarter, enhance our programs, and provide job satisfaction and career paths for our team members.

5. Our company has five core values (Integrity, Passion, Collaboration, Vision, and Making an Impact). Which of these values resonates most with you and the work you do at PSD?

It’s hard to choose just one, but I think “Making an Impact” is the one that resonates the most with me. Working for a company that prioritizes social responsibility, and knowing that our collective efforts are making the world a better place is key for me. In the QA Division, the customers are at the heart of what we do. Knowing that our work can truly make a difference in the lives of people whose voices often go unheard keeps me coming back for more, even on the worst days.

Lauren McFeeley WFH

Lauren working from home with her boss looking over her shoulder.

6. What is your favorite PSD-related memory?

There have been so many great memories over the years. The ice cream truck at the Ithaca office, trying to humanely catch and release the mice living in my desk, Peepfest 2019, Lime bike shenanigans. One of my all-time favorite memories was in 2018 when Emelie, Ethan, John Wozniak, and David, a former employee, gathered at the Ithaca office for a two-day “Bag Party.” They were testing the feasibility of and best practices for using a plastic bag to measure airflow according to the RESNET Standard 380. They used packing peanuts to measure the volume of the bags! People working through a challenge together in a creative and fun way on awesome stuff is one of the things I like most about PSD!

7. What do you do when you aren’t at work? Any interesting hobbies? 

I like to be active outdoors – hiking, bicycling, heading to the lake with my paddleboard, or even just working in the garden. I feel lucky to live in a place where I can do all these things. I watch a lot of soccer with my family. I also like to read and quilt. I love photography. I dream of being a knitter, but no luck so far.

8. Do you have any pets?

We have a dog and two cats. I foster kittens for our local animal shelter so it’s a constant battle not to add a few more mouths to our crew.

9. What is your favorite holiday?

I often tell people that Groundhog Day is my favorite holiday. It just cracks me up that for a short moment in time, our eyes and hopes are focused on this homely woodland creature. All the crowds and costumes and fanfare. It’s just so silly and charming, and I love it!

10. Favorite travel destination? Or dream travel destination?

Lauren McFeeley Cayuga Lake swim

Lauren preparing to swim across Cayuga Lake.

I love cities, especially wandering around, looking at the architecture and visiting art museums. I also love the outdoors, the ocean, mountains, forests. We try to find places that offer a bit of both. I think Scotland is our next trip.

11. Favorite musician/genre?

I used to be a grunge girl – flannels and black eyeliner. I went to a lot of live music in small clubs. Now I’m a soccer mom, and my playlists are all over the place. Wilco, Los Lobos, and Frank Ocean are currently in heavy rotation.

12. What’s the top item that is still on your bucket list? Have you checked anything cool or fun off?

My bucket list is centered around travel. I’d like to visit all 63 national parks, dive at the Great Barrier Reef, take an epic train journey, see the northern lights, walk the Camino de Santiago, take an awesome photo of the Milky Way galaxy, try van life for a year. I’ve traveled to a lot of cool places, but there is still so much I’d like to see and do!

13. What is an interesting thing about yourself that not a lot of people know?

Every summer I swim across Cayuga Lake with 300 other women. The Women Swimmin’ event is a fundraiser for our local hospice organization.

Thank you, Lauren! We appreciate you taking the time to do this and are excited to have people get to know a little more about our employees here at PSD.

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