State’s Water Plant Operators Recognize Peers as “Best” In Their Supply Class at Annual Event
2010 Operators of the Year named in Springfield
Springfield, Ill. –The Illinois Potable Water Supply Operators Association and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency recognized eight outstanding professionals in their individual categories of service. These operators produce and supply drinking water for Illinois consumers.
Nearly 1000 members and guests of the Illinois Potable Water Operators Association (IPWSOA) honored Ted Meckes, City Water, Light and Power Company-Springfield; Bill Liszka, Village of Manhattan; and Tony Poci, City of Rock Falls, for their outstanding work in consistently supplying safe drinking water on a daily basis to consumers, and their contributions to the industry.
Operators are rated on the day-to-day operation of facilities that use surface water or groundwater as their water source, or purchase water from another source and distribute it to consumers. “Operator of the Year” is the highest professional honor operators can receive in recognition of service and performance in the waterworks industry. In addition, runners-up are designated in each category.
Ted Meckes, Production Superintendent for Springfield’s City Water, Light and Power Company was recognized as Operator of the Year in the surface water category. Timothy Schilson, City of Hamilton, was runner-up in the surface water category
Bill Liszka, Village of Manhattan, won the award for top operator of public water supplies using groundwater. David Martin, City of Lockport, and Todd Stone, Village of Warren were selected runners-up in this category. Todd is the Water Operator for the Village of Warren. He has been in the water business for 11 years. Warren has 696 service connections, pumps 150,000 gallons of water a day and has 120 fire hydrants. Todd has secured grants for a complete meter change-out program which he personally implemented; and also worked to receive a grant to rehabilitate one of the Warren wells. He is a member of the Warren Lions Club and is also a certified Lay Speaker.
Tony Poci, City of Rock Falls, earned the award for distribution-only systems operation. Tony is the distribution crew leader for the City of Rock Falls Water Dept. He has worked with the system for 10 years. Rock Falls has 3,700 service connections, pumps 1 million gallons of water a day using 65 miles of main and is equipped with 450 fire hydrants. Tony is in charge of the distribution crew and system. Tony has developed a new procedure to avoid digging to repair water shutoffs and service disconnects. He is a member of the Sterling-Rock Falls Jaycees and the Rock Falls Optimist Club. Runners up in this category were Thomas J. Maubach, City of Henry, and Timothy Brodnan, City of Prospect Heights.
The winners are nominated by their peers, screened by a pre-selection committee, and chosen by a second committee that interviews nominees during a fly-around of the state. Committee members, all operators, use a numeric system to rate nominees. The results are then tallied, and winners finalized by computer.
These operators were honored during the Association’s 79th annual conference at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Springfield. Members from all regions of the state met to stay current on new industry regulations, equipment and processes. Winners of the 2010 awards were announced and received their trophies during the three day event.
Speakers and displays at the 2010 conference focused on safe operation despite tight economic times.
The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency and the IPWSOA co-sponsor the conference. The Agency oversees operations of approximately 1,800 public water supplies serving Illinois and their compliance with federal and state drinking water regulations.
News Release – Illinois Potable Water Supply Operators Association
1330 West State Street, PO Box 1146
Jacksonville, Illinois 62651-1146
Contact: Lou Allyn Byus 217/652-1869
For Immediate Release: September 24, 2010