Q&A Ginger Scoggins

Q&A Ginger Scoggins

Ecolibrium gets to know the ASHRAE President, who is visiting Australia this month and will be appearing at ARBS. 

In addition to being ASHRAE President, what is your job title? 

I am President and founder of Engineered Designs, Inc, an engineering consulting firm in Cary, North Carolina.  

Do you have a specialty? 

Yes, I design mechanical systems primarily for a large telecommunications company, focusing on redundant systems and cooling-dominant telco switch equipment.  

What are you enthusiastic about? 

ASHRAE. I am enjoying this year as well as the other 30 years that I have been an ASHRAE volunteer. It’s a way to give back to my industry.  

What do you like about your job? 

I like the diversity of the systems we get to design and the clients we get to work with on different types of projects.  

What do you find challenging?  

Getting the building industry to embrace the contributions that buildings have on climate change.  

With 2023 being the hottest year on record, just what can be done to address the climate crisis? Is it even possible to wean ourselves off fossil fuels? 

It is possible, but it won’t happen overnight. I don’t think we have all of the answers yet, but I do believe we are approaching a dire situation. We need to make conscious decisions to change the way we do our business, which is a struggle for our industry to do.  

At this point, if folks don’t believe in climate change, I don’t think they ever will 

How do you deal with climate sceptics?  

Not very well! At this point, if folks don’t believe in climate change, I don’t think they ever will! But we can work with them on energy reduction, which accomplishes some of the goals.

Could you tell us a little bit about Eunice Foote and what her work means to you – and for us all? 

It is very impressive that she worked on this issue of climate change in the 1800s, when women were not typically scientists. I can only imagine the pushback she must have received at that time.

What is the biggest lesson you learned running your own business over 27 years? 

Never give up! There were days when I didn’t want the responsibility of the firm, but I stayed in it, and it has been beneficial to do so. I have great teams and great partners now, and it has gotten easier.

What are you optimistic about? 

The future. We can’t give up. We have to stick with the hard stuff and try to make a difference. I’ve taken many arrows for the focus on climate change in my year as President, but I feel that we need to spread the word on what our industry can do to help the situation, and if even just one person listens, it would have been worth it.  

You have owned muscle cars in the past. Have you switched to electric? 

I currently have a plug-in hybrid Volvo, which I love. Once I retire, I plan to go all electric! 

Something people might be surprised to find out about me is… 

My dad was a country music singer. I grew up in Nashville so he could pursue his career in music. He has songs on iTunes and Spotify, even today.  

Like to know more? 

Ginger Scoggins is appearing at the invitation-only ARBS Chair Breakfast. She is also the keynote at AIRAH’s Women’s AIRAH Breakfast to be held on Wednesday May 29 at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre.  

Email marie.karekl@airah.org.au for more information about the event. 

Ecolibrium May 2024

This article appears in ecolibrium’s May 2024 issue

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