Teresa can’t remember a day when she didn’t know she wanted to be a scientist or engineer. “I’ve always viewed the world as a big laboratory,” she says. “To me it’s made up of pieces and parts and problems to be solved.”
Because experience told her she wanted to be right in the middle of production, Teresa began her career in the manufacturing industry. In the early 1980s, though, as environmental regulations gained momentum, she realized her true interest lay in the environmental aspects of production. One of the experiences that galvanized her career was helping to launch a design-build group within a consulting firm, where she was involved in all aspects of starting up operations, from environmental permitting and engineering design to construction, procurement, and insurance and liability.
Tackling multifaceted projects with energy and optimism has remained a hallmark of Teresa’s (former coworkers dubbed her “Kick-A** Kinder”). “Clients like to dump complicated stuff on me because they know I’ll get it done,” she says, noting that the ultimate satisfaction in her career comes from taking a thorny issue off a client’s hands and making it manageable.
Outside of work, Teresa enjoys gardening, woodworking, cooking, and spending time with her husband and grown son and daughter. “My career has provided a lot of satisfaction,” she says, “but there’s nothing like family.”