Emily Thompson is the Senior Water Quality Program Coordinator, and she has worked at the Edwards Aquifer Authority for the past 18 years. She received her bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University in Marine Science. In addition, she has a master’s degree in Environmental Science from the University of Texas at San Antonio.
Emily started her career path off as a field representative reading meters and locating unregistered wells in Comal and Hays Counties. Shortly after, she became a technician collecting water samples from wells, springs, and rivers from locations spanning the EAA’s eight county jurisdiction. During this time, Emily decided to pursue her master’s degree, which she later obtained in Environmental Science. Her experience and skillset eventually led her to assume the role of Environmental Coordinator. From that point on her focus shifted to protecting the environmentally sensitive, Edwards Aquifer Recharge Zone. Some of her responsibilities included, reviewing engineering plans for new construction, monitoring storage of hazardous substances, and investigating potential aquifer contaminations.
In her current position at the EAA, Emily is responsible for recharge zone protection and research, spill response and overseeing remediation, first responder collaboration, cave and other sensitive feature location, complaint investigations, and she assists with conservation easement monitoring and geological assessments. Emily is also a certified hazardous materials manager (CHMM), which gives her the ability to make informed recommendations for handling hazardous materials. The programs Emily is tasked with help maintain the overall quality of water that flows into and through the Edwards Aquifer, which helps ensure the health of the system which 2 million South Central Texans rely on.
Emily has always loved outdoor activities and enjoys sharing that love with her friends and family. Whether it be a vacation to the beach where she teaches her nephew about marine life and the creatures that once dwelled in shells, or time out on the lake, you can almost always find her exploring the outdoors. Her advice to adolescents is to pursue something they are passionate about and a course of study that excites them. She says, “The first step, is to focus your efforts on topics that inspire you. Finding your passion leads to an enjoyment for the career you ultimately take on.” The science field has a vast array of careers, but focusing on a specific interest within the field is the key to long-term success and professional growth in the science field.