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Women in Utility Spotlight: Alyssa Gagnon

Meet Alyssa Gagnon

Alyssa says arboriculture is “in her blood.” Coming from a family of Canadian loggers and spending a lot of her childhood outdoors and involved in organizations like Future Farmers of America, Alyssa knew a career in forestry was in her future.

After graduating from Paul Smith’s College in New York with an associate’s degree in forest technology in 2018, Alyssa joined Davey and was assigned to the Rappahannock Electric Cooperative account, where she works as one of three consulting utility foresters. In her job, Alyssa spends most of her days outdoors checking for hazard tree limbs on the utility’s rights-of-way (ROWs) in the middle of the pruning cycle. Alyssa also sets up appointments for customers who need help finding solutions for trees on their properties’ ROW easement.

“I love being outside, it’s instant serotonin,” she says. “I enjoy talking to customers and teaching them about what I do.”

By sharing what she knows, Alyssa solidified herself as an expert in her field. She says women who are interested in the field should take the leap and become part of the movement to include more women in utility careers. “Don’t be afraid,” Alyssa says. “[The industry is] changing, and the only way it’ll change is if we include more women.”

The best part? Women joining the utility workforce are welcomed into a sisterhood on day one. Alyssa says there’s a camaraderie in the utility field that can help women succeed. “Any woman in the industry will help,” she says. “I want to pave the way for other women [to come into the field.]”