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James' Story: A Lifelong Love of Engineering and the Environment

By James L'Esperance, Project Manager

The saying goes, "Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life." I guess I' m lucky in that I am able to pair two passions of mine in my career.

I had what I call the cliché childhood of an engineer. I was obsessed with Legos and went on more than a few architecture tours of big cities with my family. I've also always been a fan of the outdoors and enjoy hiking, camping, and running marathons. So, as a project manager supporting Northrop Grumman's environmental portfolio, it's a great fit that I'm able to use my lifelong love of engineering to be a steward for the environment.

What work does Northrop Grumman's environmental remediation program do?

Northrop Grumman's environmental remediation program works to clean up and restore environmentally impacted properties to a condition that is compliant with federal and state regulations and can be returned to productive use. We collaborate with governmental agencies, conservation groups, citizen groups, local municipalities, and other stakeholders to work in an efficient and effective manner, reducing risk to the environment and to the company.

Man wearing a suits stands in front of a construction site.

James works on programs that support Northrop Grumman's environmental remediation efforts.

A Fulfilling Career Spanning Civil Engineering to Consultant to Project Manager

A large part of my job is addressing contaminated groundwater zones in San Gabriel Valley, Los Angeles. The project principally consists of building a water treatment system that will capture the contaminated groundwater, treat it, and distribute it to the local community for drinking water use. Because I worked as a consultant engineer for a number of years before joining Northrop Grumman, I can leverage my previous experience with design and construction for use on this project, as well as meeting and working with stakeholders and the local community.

Once complete, the system will treat five square miles of groundwater contamination and produce two million gallons of clean drinking water per day. This treated water will provide the San Gabriel Basin a much needed new water source and enough clean water for 30,000 residents.

The Feeling of Empowerment in My Job

In the two-plus years I' ve worked at Northrop Grumman, I have experienced firsthand the company's empowerment of innovative engineering solutions for the purpose of sustainability and environmental resource conservation. I get to feel that sense of empowerment every day, and I love being able to leverage our resources and being a part of driving the company's big picture environmental strategy.


Northrop Grumman provides exciting career opportunities for people with a wide variety of interests, talents, and skills, including environmental pursuits. Click here to search for environmental jobs throughout the country..


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