OMWA welcomes new board members

Following its AGM in Barrie this month, the Ontario Municipal Water Association announced two new members have joined its board of directors: Bonnie Clark and Michael Mortimer.

“We are honoured and pleased to welcome our new members,” said OMWA president, Rosemary Kelleher-MacLennan. “We always appreciate getting fresh perspectives and new ideas about municipal water systems. Everyone in the association benefits from the collective experience and high calibre of expertise the board brings.”

Bonnie Clark joins as a Political Director. She is a council member for the Otonabee South Monaghan municipality and a retired nurse (R.N.). She also sits on the Trent Conservation Coalition Source Protection Committee.

“Municipal experience would be a great starting point and give you a solid knowledge base to choose the direction and path you would like to go down,” she told the OMWA. “The need for safe water will always be there.”

Bonnie would like to see the organization grow its representation from our First Nations Communities. She says she appreciates the opportunity to network with peers, share challenges and ensure our communities’ water is safe.

Michael Mortimer joins as a Technical Director. He is currently Manager of Environmental Services for the City of Stratford.

Michael began his career as a water and wastewater treatment operator with the District of Muskoka in 2002 before taking roles at the Region of Waterloo and City of Waterloo. He became Manager of Environmental Services at the City of Stratford in May of 2015.

Michael is currently on the Walkerton Clean Water Center Training Advisory Committee and is the municipal representative for Stratford, St Mary’s, Perth and Huron Counties on the Thames Sydenham and Region Source Protection Committee.

In a statement to the board, he said, “I am very excited to be joining the OMWA in a Director role where I hope to be able to contribute in a meaningful way to the ever-adapting policy, legislative and regulatory frameworks of water and wastewater.”

The Ontario Municipal Water Association’s mission is to act as the voice of Ontario’s public water supply authorities and their customers on policy, legislative and regulatory issues related to the provision of safe and reliable public water supply in Ontario. We are a unique organization in that our focus is upon the management and administration of public drinking water, stormwater and wastewater. Our membership is made up of public water supply authorities. Our directors are either municipal officials or senior water supply managers.

President’s message, summer 2018

It sometimes seems that every week a challenge to our drinking water emerges. How can you stay informed about the threats and solutions? Easily – if you’re an OMWA member. We keep members informed about water-related issues and events through our twice-weekly newswire, through our website, and in our upcoming Education Days.

Challenges can come from unexpected sources. Like our clothes and household cleansers. We’ve reported many stories about microplastics and nanoplastics – microscopic bits of non-degradable plastic that scientists now realize pervade our environment.

They’re a new and difficult challenge for water professionals.

Plastic is so ubiquitous that it finds its way into everything around us, even our drinking water. One study found plastic in 85 per cent of tap water samples taken from a dozen countries (in the USA researchers found plastic in 94 per cent of their samples).

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OMWA board of directors and executive committee, 2017

OMWA’s new board of directors

The Board of Directors of the Ontario Municipal Water Association (OMWA) are pleased to announce that at their Annual General Meeting held May 9, 2017 in Niagara Falls, the following slate of Directors was approved.

Political Directors

  • Rosemary K MacLennan               Municipality of Trent Hills
  • Mark Howson                                      Sault Ste. Marie PUC
  • Peter Chilibeck                                   Lakefront Utility Services Inc. (Cobourg)
  • Lynn Dollin                                            Town of Innisfil
  • Doug Lawrance                                  Town of Sioux Lookout
  • Andy Bruziewicz                                 City of Sarnia
  • Patrick Merlihan                                 Township of Woolwich

Management Directors

  • Andrew Henry                                  Lake Huron and Elgin Area Water
  • Nick Benkovich                               City of Greater Sudbury (retired, 2018)
  • Jim Keech                                           Utilities Kingston
  • Amy Martin                                       City of Guelph
  • John Thompson                              City of Barrie
  • Susan MacFarlane                          Lambton Area Water Supply System

Also at the Annual General Meeting, Andrew Henry, who has been the OMWA President for the past three years, announced that he would be stepping down and will become our Past President.

Following the 2017 AGM the OMWA Board held a Meeting of the Directors and the following changes to board’s executive were made:

  • President Andrew Henry (Manager, Lake Huron & Elgin Area Primary Water Supply Systems, London) stepped down after serving three years, and is now Past President;
  • Vice President Rosemary Kelleher-MacLennan (Deputy Mayor, Municipality of Trent Hills) was elected President;
  • Vice President Peter Chilibeck (Chair, Lakefront Utilities, Cobourg) is now Chairman of the Board;
  • Board members John Thompson (manager of Water, Wastewater and Environmental Operations, City of Barrie) and Doug Lawrance (Mayor, Municipality of Sioux Lookout) were elected Vice-Presidents.

Continue reading “OMWA board of directors and executive committee, 2017”