Good Day to all,

As I sit down to compose my first letter as President of the WWOA, the weather man is talking about many four-letter words that we don’t like to use.  I will however go out on a limb and quote a few.  Cold, wind, ice and snow.  Not the worst words in the English vocabulary, but the key words that make us think of the coming season.  If you are waiting for Indian Summer, don’t hold your breath.  It was only a flash in the pan.  Winter is still coming!

I realize while writing this letter the significance of the date and time; 11/11, 11:11.  My father served in Korea and conveniently reminded me of that fact when it was election time.  ‘Get your butt down there and vote, I didn’t go to Korea, so you could sit there and not exercise the right so many of us fought for.’  Thank you, Dad.  And thanks to everyone that have sacrificed their time and some their lives for our freedom and continue to do so. 

Because of that freedom I was able to choose what I wanted to do with my life.  After farming and trying a few additional different jobs, I was asked to help shovel some sludge at a local wastewater plant.  Who would have thought that 30 years later I would be a proud member of the Wisconsin Wastewater Operators Association?  And because that freedom is so crazily awesome, someone decided that maybe I would make a good WWOA Board Member, to stand up for the Operators of Wisconsin and everyone in the wastewater industry.  I am proud to have been chosen and now serve as your President.  But remember, no one part is any better than the whole; as we learn from everyone that has taken part in our most important business of the world, WASTEWATER TREATMENT.  Technology has developed at an explosive rate to keep up to the demands of the people.  Some may look at the ongoing and ever-changing government regulations as difficult and sometimes unachievable.  But who is government?  It is the people we serve.  They demand excellence and that is what we give them day in and day out. The WWOA is as strong today as it was 51 years ago. 

That strength was shown recently at our 51st Annual Conference that was recently held in October at the Madison Marriott West Hotel and Conference Center, in Middleton, WI.  With 843 attendees, 159 exhibitors (the most we have ever had) and three and 1/2 tracks of technical sessions, we continued the WWOA goal of education and training opportunities in all areas of water, wastewater and septage industries.  WWOA will continue with this endeavor for years to come.

I may be the President of the WWOA, but I am first and foremost a proud wastewater treatment plant operator.  My goal is to continue offering great training opportunities, while expanding our reach to everyone in our field.  We have only scratched the surface of who we can be and what we can achieve.  I ask for all of us to reach out to our communities, our schools and local organizations.  Tell them who we are.  Tell them what we do.  Show them how the dirty water gets clean.  Strive to be better each day of our lives and we will continue to grow.  WE ARE THE WWOA!!

2017 is rapidly coming to an end.  As we close out this year and look forward to starting 2018, let’s take time to reflect on all that is good in our world.  Wishing you and yours a Joyous Holiday Season and a Very Happy New Year…

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