Employee Profile: Erica McFarlane

Worked at Louisville Water since 2019

Employee Profile - Erika McFarlaneElectrical Engineer Erica McFarlane works at Louisville Water’s Crescent Hill Water Treatment Plant. She monitors the Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) system that plant operators and maintenance staff use at Crescent Hill and B.E. Payne water treatment plants.

Her job is very technical and challenging, but McFarlane said that’s what she enjoys the most.

“There’s always a computer issue to fix or a hardware problem I specifically have experience with to handle. My team relies on me to help troubleshoot and maintain the SCADA system and I rely on them to provide me with feedback. It’s a team effort to keep Louisville’s water running efficiently and I love that!” she said.

For someone interested in electrical engineering, McFarlane gave the following advice:

“Never give up and always advocate for yourself and your needs. School was especially difficult for me due to being neurodivergent and I faced a lot of trials and tribulations, but once I learned that if you never lose sight of your goals and believe in yourself that anything is possible,” she said.

Neurodivergent is a difference in the way people think, learn, and behave. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, examples include Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Dyslexia, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

McFarlane hopes to raise awareness about neurodiversity and offered ways others can help the cause.

“Neurodiverse individuals are all around us and we aren’t going anywhere. What we need everyone to understand is that even though our brains may work differently, it doesn’t mean we are any less capable. It is important for all of us to foster an environment that is conducive to neurodiversity, and to recognize and emphasize each person’s individual strengths and talents while also providing support for their differences and needs,” she said.

McFarlane is also a member of Louisville Water’s CORE (Culture Ownership Respect Engagement) Council, an employee group devoted to the company’s diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging efforts.

When she’s not at work, McFarlane enjoys gardening and gaming.

“My husband built me a custom raised garden bed! I like to start my own vegetable plants and raise them until they are mature enough to go outside. It’s really rewarding guiding something along its life and eventually seeing it bring fruit and joy to other people,” she said. “I also like to modify hardware in my spare time, anything from a Tamagotchi to a video game console. It’s challenging and keeps me engaged.”