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John McLaughlin, PE
Director of Internal Development (Charlotte Office)

Professional/Personal Mantra or Motto

"Pay it forward or pass it on", in other words, share what you’ve learned with others.

In my profession, I am most fulfilled when…

I can pass along knowledge or experience, I’ve accumulated with younger staff. I truly enjoy sharing what I have learned over my career, I consider it an honor and a responsibility to be able to pass along any helpful knowledge.  

What personal or professional activities/involvement are you most passionate about?

I have always gravitated towards organizations that focused on empowerment, such as providing a helping hand as opposed to a handout. I like the old saying “Give someone a fish and they eat for a day, teach them how to fish and they eat for a lifetime.” I have been very active with Water for People, including chairing the committee and traveling on a mission trip to Bolivia. I also served on the Board of Directors for the Campaign for Human Development and Helping Empower Local People in the Charlotte region.

When I'm not working, I enjoy…

reading and woodworking. I’m a bit of an exotic wood nerd, making unique items (boxes, stands, musical instruments) from woods such as sustainably acquired Padauk, Sapele, Mahogany, Marblewood, Zebrawood, American Chestnut and of course the basics of Cherry, Maple, and Walnut. I’m also hooked on spy thriller novels, especially authors similar to Tom Clancy.

Where did you receive your education? 

I’m a proud Hokie from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, or as it is known these days Virginia Tech. Go Hokies!

What is your biggest pet peeve?

I have a long list of pet peeves, and I try to not let them become big deals but being consistently late for meetings and appointments drives me nuts. Being late from time to time happens to everyone, it’s the habitual lateness that makes me a little crazy. My motto is “I’d rather be 30 minutes early than one minute late”.


I'm known around the office for…

being an early bird. I’m usually awake by 2:30 AM, exercising (riding my bicycle resistance rollers) by 3 AM, and in the office by 5:00 AM. 

What is your Spirit Animal?

I have always had an affinity for bears and monkeys, but not in the spirit animal kind of way. Because of my love of books, a “bookworm” was suggested and that’s not far off; being a dreamer, anticipating the latest book in a series, geeking out over certain authors. 

I finally settled on a dog because they are generally even-tempered, loyal, love to play, and are a bit goofy. I like trying to figure out what our family dog is thinking. We can carry on a level of conversation (yeah, I know, a little weird). 

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