Marissa Adlard: Zen State of Mind

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Marissa Adlard, Field Service Technician at SICK, enjoys the craftsmanlike nature of her work. She is found at job sites across the country, which include distribution centers, airports and production facilities for SICK logistics automation and factory automation customers.

On board with SICK since May 2018, she’s already worked on many types of package and parcel sort equipment and baggage claim systems. The Santa Rosa, Calif-based technician typically installs SICK camera and scanner systems for the purpose of reading barcodes, and occasionally makes repairs on equipment. “I install hardware and upload firmware to enable the equipment to work according to the customer’s needs,” she says.

The yen to build and tinker comes naturally to Marissa, a native of scenic Mount Shasta. Calif. When growing up, her dad literally built and finished most of their home in a six-month window while Marissa and her mom assisted. “One of the greatest things about my job at SICK is stepping away from power tools and going to hand tools. I enjoy the precision work and the meditative sense of it,” she says.  

Marissa’s background as a service technician had a circuitous start (electrical pun intended). The University of San Francisco environmental studies graduate had planned on law school but instead got interested in electrical design in an administrative job at a solar off-grid firm. She was provided training in design which fed her aptitude. After positions in technical sales and design in the solar industry, she was recruited by Tesla’s energy division. There, she designed sites for Tesla residential Powerwall 1 systems, and went on to become a field service technician repairing supercharger stations.

Following a role as a project manager at a solar firm, Marissa settled into the technical trade. Her role at SICK isn’t abundant with customer interaction though the welcome she receives at job sites is gratifying. “I get to be the hero, the one they like to see,” she says.

“I hope to master the skills I have now,” Marissa says of her current role. Down the road, her career has a natural progression in applying her technical know-how. “I’d like to try product management or applications engineering, and then move into the product development end.”

Marissa took up guitar more than a decade ago—playing with a heavy jazz influence—and often collaborates with friends. Soon she looks forward to becoming an aunt to an adopted child of her brother.

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