Meet Lacy Norris – A Hard Working Nature Lover and Accomplished Quality Engineer
Lacy, our Senior Engineer, is deeply devoted to her family and girlfriend. She identifies herself as a pansexual transgender woman, and we are proud that she is a part of our Qualitest family.
Lacy Norris, Qualitest’s Senior Engineer from North Carolina, understands how precious every moment of her time is. So, be it going hiking, backpacking or cooking for others, she tries to enjoy every bit of it.
Areas of expertise
Lacy has extensive experience in the software QA domain and across the industry spectrum.
She says, “I have been in the Software QA field for 14 & 1/2 years and have an extensive background working with clients ranging in various industries from financial, medical, entertainment, to automotive and more.”
Lacy also has experience working in different capacities for different QA projects.
“I have worked as a consultant on both automation and manual projects (mostly manual), as a Team Lead/Manager, Functional Manager and Delivery Manager,” she adds.
Moreover, during her time in the Army, she also learned a lot about teamwork and leadership.
Software testing and the Qualitest journey
Being a veteran, Lacy could go back to school to complete her Bachelor’s in Software Engineering, which allowed her to make a smooth entry into the IT industry. She also holds a Master’s in IT Management, which gives her an extra edge in management principles.
Lacy says, “Having such an extensive background has helped me a lot in my career. Not only as a consultant, but also having been a team lead, a Functional Manager, a Delivery Manager and now back to consulting again, I am lucky to have the educational background that I have”.
When speaking about how she chose a career in testing, she says, “I did not specifically choose a career in testing per se.”
“After graduating with my Bachelor’s degree, which I got later in life (36 years old), I was looking for any job in IT. Being older without any IT experience, I was not going to be picky with an entry level job competing with much younger applicants,” adds Lacy.
When she was given an opportunity to work as a Software QA Consultant by a company 14 & 1/2 years ago, which much later was acquired by Qualitest, she accepted it happily.
While talking about this company, Lacy also went back in time, remembering when she came out: “I came out as transgender during a very political time when it was not the greatest to be transgender in my state. Luckily my company was open and accepting of me being who I am,” she recalls.
She admitted that she had concerns about Qualitest. But once she knew more, all her worries vanished into thin air.
“July of 2018, Qualitest acquired my company, and I was nervous not knowing whether this was an accepting company. Luckily for me, it was, and it has been a wonderful experience. Moreover, with the birth of Qualipride, the experience I believe will grow even more for our LGBTQ+ employees,” adds Lacy.
On the professional front, Qualitest has provided her with the opportunity to work on several projects with different clients.
“I am looking forward to being able to grow and move back toward more into a Lead/Management type role here in the future,” adds Lacy.
Advice to the future generation of testers
Lacy understands the fear among new graduates about starting in a company anywhere. “I know this is scary, as I did it starting over 14 years ago at the age of 36 with a family,” she says.
But she also has a beautiful piece of advice for everyone: “Take a deep breath, take it one day at a time, learn everything that you can, do not sweat the small stuff, learn from your mistakes and have fun.”
Lacy further points out that the most crucial part is to enjoy the work, emphasizing the importance of work-life balance.
Views on Pride Community and Pride Month
Lacy believes that Pride Month is important because it showcases the shared LGBTQ+ history, love, self-acceptance and the power of diversity. This is the time of the year when the community comes together as a whole in general. However, she is also concerned about it.
She says, “Sadly, Pride comes with a double edge sword for me as well. That is where the ‘in general’ part come in play for me.”
“There are parts of our community that want to remove the ‘T’ and all the other letters from the LGBTQIA+ alphabet soup as they refer to it. It is a small segment of the greater community, but it still exists,” adds Lacy.
While speaking on the importance of every letter under the LGBTQIA+ umbrella, Lacy also highlighted the Stonewall Riots – a watershed moment in LGBTQIA+ history.
She says, “How people forget over time, especially the ones who did not attend or live through the time surrounding the Stonewall Riots, that it was not just one group there that was standing up for our rights that started our liberation movement. Do not get me wrong because I do have “PRIDE” in who I am and for all my brothers, sisters, non-binary folks. For this Pride month I wish everyone Love and Peace.”
Life beyond software testing
Being a hiker/backpacker, her love for travel is quite evident. She also has a small hiking YouTube channel, Bumble Bee Hikes, which has all the content of her adventures.
She says, “I have a sense of wanderlust in me. I enjoy seeing new places and experiencing new cultures. I also like going off the beaten path.”
Besides traveling, she loves to cook, but not for herself.
“I do not find any joy in cooking for myself. It’s when I cook for others that I can put myself into whatever I make for them and then see them enjoy the fruits of my labor,” says Lacy.
She also has a creative and artistic side to her. It is exhibited in different forms such as woodworking, writing, drawing, colorful ropes & strings, and creating her own Halloween costumes.
Lacy is the mother of 3 beautiful children. While talking more about her personal life, she talks about her girlfriend/partner who she loves deeply. “We have been together for about 2 years now and she has a 10-year-old daughter. We met during the pandemic. We share a love for the outdoors especially the beach,” says Lacy.
Here’s wishing Lacy many more years of love and happiness!