Meet our Awesome Associate Ashley Heclo, a Rod Person in our West Palm Beach, Florida office. Ashley joined WGI two years ago and is a part of our Geospatial Team.
Tell us a little bit about where you’re from and where you went to school: Originally from Boston but grew up on a Christmas tree farm in White Post, Virginia. Legend has it that the “White Post” in the middle of town was one of George Washington’s original surveying jobs when he worked for Lord Fairfax and lived at his farm, Greenway Court. According to local lore the original post is within the current White Post but I believe this to be one of those urban myths, as the post is at the 4-way intersection in the middle of town and is often the victim of a late night drunk driver. Stop signs were installed at the intersection just a few years ago and seem to have alleviated that issue to some degree.
What drew you to this profession? The unknown. I’ve always enjoyed challenging myself to learn new things. This seemed like the perfect setting, as I would be back working outside. My favorite environment.
What types of projects have you worked on? Mostly land development, with a spattering of DOT work. I have some internal conflict with the land development work because if we’re there, likely something is being built. That being said, being part of some of the Everglades Restoration projects WGI is part of balances those feelings out.
What’s your get-pumped song? Anything ’90s techno.
What do you like to do in your free time? Fitness and an active lifestyle are important to me. I’m often at the gym or running before work (way too tired after 10 hours in the sun!) I don’t like to define myself as an ultrarunner but I suppose that’s what I am. Ultra-marathons are races with any distance over the marathon distance of 26.2 miles. I’m stupidly drawn to the longer ones for some reason. My next big races coming up are Ancient Oaks in December (a 100 mile race of 29 loops in Titusville, FL), Arrowhead 135 in January (a 135 mile, self-supported race in International Falls, Minnesota the so called “Icebox of the Nation”) and Vol State in July (a 314 mile road “race” across the state of Tennessee).
Have you read any good books lately? Most of my books are “read” on Audible. One of my favorites lately was “Duma Key” by Stephen King.
What does your ideal vacation look like? Anywhere remote.
What was your first job? Galloping racehorses for $5 per horse. I thought I was king of the world getting paid to do something I would still do for free.
When I’m creatively stuck, I… Turn it off and turn it back on.
What would be impossible for you to give up? I’ve found out through injury that I’m not a very happy person when I cannot run.
Any interesting facts about yourself that you’d like to share? My sobriety birthday is on February 21st. I’ll be 9 years in 2020. It is still a challenge but I’m grateful for every experience that got me to today.
Who or what inspires you? All the people I’m surrounded by who continue to overcome. Be it an addiction, the loss of a loved one, an abusive relationship, sexual trauma. People who refuse to give up on life inspire me daily.
Everyone at WGI has a story about why they joined the team. What’s yours? Christian made me do it.
Thanks for your time, Ashley. We’re happy to have you on the WGI team!
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