Happy New Year!
Let me start be saying how excited and honored I am to be President of AWRA for 2013. The organization is like no other and, many would say, ahead of its time.
While most water-related organizations sprung up to service a particular sector – wastewater treatment plant operators, drinking water purveyors, etc., the AWRA was formed 48 years ago to bring multiple sectors together (government, private, non-profit, academic) to better understand water resources as a whole and advance the science and management of this incredible resource.
AWRA was ahead of its time because the nation, actually the world, is now understanding that there is only one water system and to manage it effectively and efficiently we must understand the integration of all of its parts and work across sectors, engaging many stakeholders. That is the premise that kick started AWRA.
AWRA and my day job have a lot in common. I am the Executive Director of the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC), the mission of which is to bring four states and the federal government together to manage the water resources of the basin without regard to political boundaries. We are all about Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM)! So it is a natural extension for me to want to help AWRA grow and be the lead organization in the field of water resources.
I am currently reading the biography of Rachel Carson, written on the 50th anniversary of the publication of Silent Spring. More about that in the next letter. Looking back 50 years, makes me realize how much progress we have made in understanding the impacts of man on our water systems and how much we have been able to improve water quality. However, the future is daunting. Cleaning up point source pollution discharges in the ’70s seems like a simple task (but I know it wasn’t), compared to the complexity of our current situation. Hopefully, AWRA can help you navigate these troubled waters.
My primary goal during my year as president is to make AWRA more meaningful and useful to you. What water resources problems are you facing? We are currently reenergizing our Technical Committees to provide better service and outreach. Is there a committee or specialty conference that addresses your issues of concern? If not, please let me know. I want to hear from you! You can reach me at email@example.com.
Carol R. Collier
AWRA 2013 President
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