US Army Corps of Engineers
Memphis District

Emily McCann

Position: Biologist, Regulatory Branch
Date hired/promoted: August 2016
Supervisor's Name: Roger Allan
Hometown: Muscle Shoals, AL

What do you do in your position, and why is it important to the people we serve?


I evaluate permit applications for construction activities that may affect waters of the U.S. or wetlands, to determine if they require a section 404 permit. The regulatory program is committed to protecting the nation’s aquatic resources and navigation capacity, while allowing reasonable development through fair and balanced decisions. 

What do you see as the most important points in your career with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), and why?

The most important points of my career have been during the opportunities to serve others. Serving during flood fights and as a member of the emergency power team are the most memorable. When I joined the Army Corps of Engineers as a biologist, I never dreamed I would have the opportunities that have been provided through Emergency Operations. It is such a blessing to have my dream job, as a biologist, and be able to serve others during emergency events. 

What’s the greatest satisfaction you have in being a part of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers?

I find great satisfaction in protecting the nation’s aquatic resources. I have also found great satisfaction in serving the community while representing USACE, such as at Martin Luther King Day and at local job fairs. It is always so exciting to meet young people and share with them what I do and why it’s fun!

What advice would you give to someone who aspires to a career or position like yours?

I would encourage young women to pursue higher education such as a Master’s or Doctorate Degree. I would encourage them to gain as much experience as possible during their college career through jobs, internships and volunteering. Once in their career, I would encourage them to volunteer for as many opportunities as possible.  Try different positions, attend training, and learn everything you can. 

Can you name a particular mentor or mentors who helped you in your career? How did they help you? Have you been a mentor?

I have been blessed to have several great mentors during my short time here. The Memphis team has so many strong woman who are making a difference in our workplace and in our community. It is so inspiring to see these woman not only making great strides for themselves, but also encouraging other women to improve themselves and further their own careers. I instantly think of women such as Vickie Watson, Suzy Weil, and Carla Wells. Vickie is always encouraging those around her to grow in their personal lives and their career. She has mentored me several times and has always encouraged me to stand up for what is right and to not be afraid to expect equal treatment as a woman. Suzy is a strong woman, and a great leader, who not only excels at her career but also at home. She shows that women don’t have to sacrifice their career for their families. Carla does so much for our community. She is such a kind encouraging soul in the work place and encourages people to share love at work, at home, and in the community. She is always sharing opportunities to serve our community while representing USACE.