OMWA's Premier Municipal Water Symposium

Updated Agenda: Ontario Municipal Water Symposium

Tuesday, October 31, 2017, Toronto Marriott Bloor Yorkville, 90 Bloor Street East, Toronto, ON

7:30 to 8:10 a.m. Morning Breakfast Meet and Greet

8:10 to 8:20 a.m. Welcome Remarks: Rosemary MacLennan, President, OMWA

8:20 to 8:30 a.m. Welcome and Introduction of Keynote Speaker: Peter Chilibeck, Chair, OMWA

8:30 to 9:15 a.m. Keynote Speaker

Hon. Chris Ballard, Ontario Minister of Environment and Climate Change (confirmed)

9:15 to 10:15 a.m. Panel: Identifying Best Practices in Municipal Infrastructure Procurement

Trish JohnsonModerator: Trish Johnson, Lead, Better Best Practices Initiative, WaterTAP

Trish Johnson is the lead for WaterTAP’s Better Best Practices Initiative, bringing more than 30 years of experience in public, private and non-profit environmental management to the team.

Trish’s specialties include land use impacts on water quality and developing environmental strategies and program implementation for all levels of government. She has managed environmental assessments for water, wastewater, and solid waste and served as a senior environmental advisor for Perth and North Grenville, as well as assisting many small towns.

Before she joined WaterTAP, Trish was an associate, project manager, senior environmental consultant, and strategic advisor on small solutions at R.V. Anderson Associates Ltd. At RVA, she worked extensively for Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), including senior support on the National Assessment of First Nations Water and Wastewater Systems in Canada and the policy path forward.

Before joining RVA, Trish was an environmental services program manager in water and solid waste at the City of Ottawa for 13 years. Prior to coming to Canada, Trish worked in Washington, D.C. and spent seven years with the United States Environmental Protection Agency in Rhode Island. She has spoken extensively on small systems and is an advocate for a “value for money” approach to water and wastewater solutions.

Trish looks forward to working with Ontario’s thriving water sector to encourage better best practices for innovative water management.

Carl Bodimeade, Senior VP, Hatch, Past Chair Ontario Coalition for Sustainable Infrastructure

Carl is Senior Vice President of Hatch Infrastructure, responsible for strategy and business development. He has over 35 years of experience in project management, engineering and planning for a wide range of projects in the water & wastewater, urban infrastructure and brownfield development, and power sectors. Carl was Hatch’s Water & Wastewater Practice Leader for Canada from 2005 to 2016.

Carl is regularly invited to moderate and participate in expert panels on subjects such as infrastructure funding, the value of water, sustainability and urban resiliency. He has also contributed to several thought-leadership reports on water and urban sustainability. Carl is the Past Chair of the Ontario Coalition for Sustainable Infrastructure, an umbrella group of professional organizations working together to promote safe and sustainable infrastructure in Ontario.

Andy Manahan, Executive Director, Residential and Civil Construction Alliance of Ontario

Mr. Manahan is the executive director of the Residential and Civil Construction Alliance of Ontario. RCCAO was formed in late 2005 as a coalition of contractor associations and construction unions to speak with a stronger voice and offer solutions to government on infrastructure investment (including transit, roads, bridges, and water and sewers), regulatory reform and improving government procurement practices.

RCCAO has commissioned more than 40 independent research reports on topics that include: the importance of stormwater funding for municipalities; sustainability for municipal water systems; government procurement of construction in the GTHA; how the creation of the Canada Infrastructure Bank could benefit investment in infrastructure projects across the country; and excess soil management practices on construction projects. To move the infrastructure agenda forward, Mr. Manahan has built strong relationships with a variety of organizations such as Metrolinx, Greater Toronto CivicAction, and the Toronto Region Board of Trade.

He served on the 13-citizen Transit Investment Strategy Advisory Panel which presented its recommendations to Premier Kathleen Wynne in 2013. Before coming to RCCAO, Mr. Manahan was responsible for government relations at a major construction union based in Toronto.

Mr. Manahan is also a frequent public speaker and writer. He has been interviewed by the Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, National Post, CBC, Global Television and CFRB 1010; his writing has been published in a variety of mainstream and technical publications.

Darla Campbell, President, a.m.onavi consulting group inc.

Darla Campbell is a professional engineering who learned her first big leadership lessons in the trenches of a construction site. After contributing nearly 20 years working in the area of water and wastewater project management and operational enhancements with municipalities, government (OCWA) and private companies, she re-certified as a trainer and coach to expand her expertise to the efficiency improvements of a company’s greatest asset – its people.

Darla is experienced in municipal and provincial infrastructure development from environmental assessment through design, construction and operation. Darla combines the principles of engineering design, problem solving and coaching theory to get extraordinary results. She coaches corporate clients to reach new heights and inspires groups to redefine possible.

In her previous role as Executive Director of the Ontario Coalition for Sustainable Infrastructure (OCSI), she helped advance sustainable infrastructure by focusing on innovation in municipal procurement, sustainable funding, and communication to convey the value of infrastructure and asset management. A speaker at various conferences across the country on climate change and municipal infrastructure, Darla is adamant that strategic thinking and public engagement are essential in solving the infrastructure deficit.

Barry Steinberg, CEO, Consulting Engineers of Ontario (invited)

10:15 to 10:40 a.m. Networking and Coffee Break

10:40 to 11:10 a.m. Session: How to Implement New or Emerging Water/Wastewater Technologies

The world in which we live and the way we do things continually change and we need to change and evolve along with them. As water professionals we do our best to stay abreast of new and emerging technologies. Often these technologies allow us to do our jobs better, to do it more efficiently or to be more effective. When it becomes time to employ these technologies we are sometimes met with a multitude of reasons why not to do so. These reasons can range from the fear of risk, the fear of being the “first” or simply because “we don’t do it that way”.

John Thompson, Director of Environmental Services, City of Barrie

John Thompson attained his Civil Engineering degree from the University of Waterloo and has practiced as a Professional Engineer for some 36 plus years throughout Ontario. He is Director of Environmental Services for the City of Barrie with responsibly for the Municipal Drinking Water System, the Wastewater System, Solid Waste and Environmental Compliance.

As a Professional Engineer (P.Eng.), a Certified Municipal Manager, Infrastructure Professional, (CMM III IP), a Project Management Professional (PMP) and a Certified Water Treatment Operator, John Thompson has been intimately involved in numerous Municipal Drinking Water and Wastewater systems and projects throughout Ontario, and beyond, from the perspectives of Concept, Design, Funding Acquisition, Project Management, Commissioning, Operations and Maintenance.

Mr. Thompson serves on the Board of Directors for the Ontario Municipal Water Association (OMWA) the Municipal Engineers’ Association (MEA) and the Ontario Region Common Ground Alliance (ORCGA). He is a member of the Walkerton Clean Water Centre’s (WCWC) Training Advisory Committee (TAC). John also serves on the MOECC / MEA Liaison Committee and the Georgian Bay Waterworks Association Executive (GBWWA).

11:10 to 12:10 p.m. Panel Discussion: How Asset Management Fits into the Greater Picture

Evolving regulations, customer expectations and technology are shaping the way our industry manages infrastructure. Emerging challenges with respect to climate change and resiliency are altering the way we make decisions. This panel will discuss recent trends in water and wastewater asset management and will focus on the importance of taking a long term view when making decisions about infrastructure today.

Moderator: Alicia Fraser, Vice President of Engineering, Capital and Support Services, Ontario Clean Water Agency
Before joining OCWA, Alicia Fraser held numerous roles including 10 years as a consulting engineer, where she designed and managed water and wastewater plants throughout Ontario. As the VP of Engineering, Capital and Support Services, Alicia’s job entails guiding the team, providing technical expertise and providing capital solutions support to OCWA's operations so that they can deliver total solutions to our clients.


Jason Speers, Director, Business and Asset Management Standards, Ontario Clean Water Agency
Jason Speers has contributed to and led a number of strategic projects, predominantly for water, wastewater and solid waste service providers in Ontario. He has experience developing strategic plans, information architecture & models, performance management programs, business transformation, and in applying principles of asset management and lifecycle analysis. Jason’s current focus is on assisting water and wastewater utilities navigate the evolving realm of Asset Management information, strategy and solutions. Jason has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from York University.

Richard Pinder, Senior Project Engineer – Asset Management, Region of Waterloo

Richard Pinder is a Professional Engineer working for the Region of Waterloo. Richard is the Senior Project Engineer for Asset Management and he leads the Water Services implementation of the current Work Management and Decision Support Systems. 

Rienk De Vries, Beacon Consulting

Rienk de VriesRienk is recognized as a high-energy senior consultant to local, state, provincial and federal governments. He has spent more than 25 years successfully implementing large-scale service delivery improvement, organisational transformation, and integrated technology solutions that have resulted in significant measurable achievements.

He has provided direction, advice and facilitation to leading water, wastewater and public works organizations across Canada, the United States and England, and has implemented “best practices” in all aspects of service delivery, including the efficient and effective management of the complete infrastructure asset life-cycle. Significant results have been achieved in major Canadian cities such as Toronto, Ottawa, Winnipeg and Montreal and regions such as Peel, Halton, York and Durham.

12:10 to 1:10 p.m. Networking Lunch

1:10 to 1:50 p.m. Session: Update on Ontario’s Indigenous Drinking Water Project

An overview of Ontario’s new Indigenous Drinking Water Projects Office and its mandate to provide technical support to First Nations communities and organizations to ensure access to sustainable drinking water systems.  Ontario is working in partnership with First Nations communities and the Federal Government to provide technical support to communities, at their request, to resolve long-term drinking water advisories.  The Project Office is providing advice and guidance to support the development of solutions that are sustainable over the long-term and is also working closely with partners to support operator training & certification and source protection planning.

Indra R. Prashad, Drinking Water Management Division, MOECC

Indra Prashad is currently the Director of the Indigenous Drinking Water Projects Office in the Ministry of the Environment & Climate Change.  She has over 30 years experience in the water and wastewater sector in both the public and private sector.  Indra joined the ministry in 2002 and was the ministry’s lead for implementing recommendations from the Walkerton Inquiry related to water approvals for municipal systems.  Indra started her career as a consulting engineer and was involved in design and construction projects in South America and the Caribbean; she also worked at the Ontario Clean Water Agency as a Project Manager and as the Team Lead for OCWA’s Optimization services Group; she then moved to the Region of Peel and lead the Region’s first water and wastewater major capital infrastructure program.  Indra is also past President of Water for People Canada and a former board member for Water for People US.

1:50 to 2:10 p.m. Session: Funding for Municipalities under a New “Green” Program

The Infrastructure Ontario Loan Program provides affordable, long-term financing to public sector clients enabling them to modernize and renew their infrastructure. We tailor our loans to meet the unique needs and complex development challenges of our clients.

Since 2003, we have helped hundreds of public sector clients deliver thousands of community projects in all parts of the province. Our loans have been used to revitalize roads and bridges, build new recreation centres and affordable housing, and purchase equipment like fire trucks and energy-efficient streetlights. Each loan is different but the impact is the same—efficient, healthier and more prosperous communities across Ontario.

Michael Dorman, Senior Relationship Manager, Infrastructure Ontario

Michael is a Senior Relationship Manager at Infrastructure Ontario where he helps municipal clients’ secure affordable, long-term financing for local infrastructure projects. Previously, Michael worked as a Commercial Underwriter, as well as several other roles in the private banking sector. He graduated from Mount Saint Vincent University with a degree in Business Administration.

2:10 to 2:55 p.m. Session: “Getting Things Done” While Implementing Your Drinking Water Quality Management System

The implementation of a Drinking Water Quality Management System is a requirement of all municipal drinking water systems in Ontario. To truly benefit from this management system, municipalities must ensure that the implementation is “right-sized” for their needs and integrated within the business of the utility’s operation and administration. This presentation will discuss opportunities and practices that can be implemented by a municipal water utility to the benefit of its consumers and customers.

Andrew J. Henry, Division Manager, Lake Huron & Elgin Area Water Supply Systems

Andrew is currently the Division Manager for the Lake Huron & Elgin Area Primary Water Supply Systems, which treats and supplies drinking water to London and thirteen municipalities in the greater London region. In addition to being involved in numerous provincially significant initiatives, including the development of the Drinking Water Quality Management System, the development of the Ontario Water/Wastewater Agency Response Network, the Operating Authority Accreditation Management Committee, Emergency Management and Critical Infrastructure Assurance, and various advisory committees to the Province of Ontario, Andrew is also on the Source Protection Committee for the Lake Erie Source Protection Region.

In May 2014, Andrew was awarded OMWA’s Don Black Award which recognizes individuals or public water authorities who have demonstrated outstanding service in support of the principles of the Ontario Municipal Water Association. In 2017, he received the OMWA Award of Exceptional Merit.

2:55 to 3:15 p.m. Networking and Coffee Break

3:15 to 3:45 p.m. Session: Cyber Security as Part of the Drinking Water Quality Management System Risk Assessment

Stephanie Meyer, Director, Marketing & Client Relations, AESI Inc.

Stephanie Meyer has more than 20 years’ experience in the management consulting and engineering industry including municipal infrastructure, energy, and cyber security for critical infrastructure. She has a proven ability to develop relationships with clients and stakeholders—drawing upon her business development and customer service skills. Her strength lies in understanding and interpreting the market’s requirements and consistency in communications. She brings a high level of awareness with a holistic vision, focusing on educating the importance of cyber security for water/wastewater in Canada and the in the United States.

3:45 to 4:25 p.m. Session: Protecting the Future of Water

Prior to the Walkerton Tragedy on May 13, 2000, we didn’t think twice about our expectation for clean, safe and good tasting drinking water when we turned on our kitchen tap. After Walkerton, we have been forced to reflect on the future of our drinking water and how we can ensure improved water quality and public health here in Ontario. As we look around the world we see extreme drought coverage in California, salt water contamination risks to drinking water as a result of Hurricane Irma in Florida, percolating chemical, refinery and Superfund sites contamination into the groundwater wells of Texas as a result of Hurricane Harvey, and water shortages in Brazil thought to be due to deforestation in the Amazon. This presentation will discuss the threats to drinking water around the world and explore the future of drinking water in Ontario. What are our federal, provincial and municipal governments doing to conserve, protect and sustain our drinking water supplies in Ontario?

Susan MacFarlane, General Manager, Lambton Area Water Supply System

Susan MacFarlane completed her Undergraduate and Master degrees in Biological (Environmental) Engineering at the University of Guelph and her Ph.D. in Civil (Environmental) Engineering from the University of Toronto. She has over 25 years of research and consulting experience working with both industrial and municipal clients. In February 2010, Susan became General Manager of Lambton Area Water Supply System. As General Manager, she is responsible for managing the operations and maintenance contract for the drinking water treatment facilities which supplies water to about 100,000 people in Lambton County. Another key role is asset and capital project management for the water treatment plant and surrounding distribution system.

4:25 to 4:40 p.m. Closing Remarks and Plans for the Future: Rosemary MacLennan, President, OMWA and Peter Chilibeck, Chair, OMWA

Continue the conversation at Water Innovation in Action (November 1) and World Water-Tech North America (November 2-3) – all part of Ontario Water Innovation Week!

Municipal Water Symposium sponsors