A Trailblazer at the Port of Miami Tunnel
“I like challenges,” says Laquanda Macklin, Maintenance Technician for the Port of Miami Tunnel. “When people tell me I can’t do something because I’m a woman, I like the challenge. I worked in construction and being the only woman was a challenge.”
That, in a nutshell, is Laquanda. This Miami native grew up in a challenging inner-city neighborhood, then at age 18, struck out on her own. “Q,” as she is called, started her career in the industry as a flagger when the Port Miami Tunnel was being built. She quickly moved up the ropes as a flagger foreman, then as a nighttime M.O.T. foreman. After the Tunnel was build, Q worked for different companies until finding the opportunity to become a Closure Support Officer at the Port of Miami Tunnel in 2016. Q continued to climb, eventually becoming the first female Maintenance Technician and member of the Incident Response Crew.
“Being a part of Ferrovial Services, I have an amazing support team. My boss Jermaine Thompson, who since day one always encouraged me, along with Carlos Lopez and Pablo Lopez, who presented me with an offer I could not refuse and that was to get my certification in welding.”
Laquanda is currently in her second year of training to become POMT’s first certified welder. She also has her advanced M.O.T. certification. She credits her success to her determination.
“I never accept ‘No,’ and what I can’t do makes me strive harder,” she says.
Her advice for young women entering the profession is never give up.
“Take advantage of any growth opportunities presented to you, open your mind to new things, accept challenges and don’t settle.”
When not working or studying, Laquanda enjoys fishing, traveling and spending quality time with her family.
Ferrovial Services North America is proud to highlight Laquanda Macklin for International Women’s Day, March 8.
[Photos & Original Story: Laura C. Sala | POMT Ferrovial Services]