ACE Visits Washington

Leadership was the theme of this year?s American Water Works Association?s Annual Conference and Exposition (ACE) held in Washington, D.C., June 12-16. Thousands of water professionals from around the world gathered at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center to take part in educational sessions and view exhibitors products and services.

?If you want to grow to be a leader, surround yourself with other leaders,? said AWWA President Joseph Mantua in an address to attendees at Monday morning?s opening general session.

The opening session showcased water professionals who have responded heroically during recent crises across the globe. Attendees gave a prolonged standing ovation to Matt Barnhart, manager of the Joplin, Missouri American Water Co., who was recognized by for his efforts to restore safe water to the traumatized Joplin community following the recent tornado.

Keynote presenters included Dave Singleton, president of Layne Christenen Water Resources Division, and the team of drillers who rescued 33 trapped Chilean miners in a global drama last year. They were followed by Yoshihiko Misono, executive director of the Japan Water Works Association, who described how his organization responded to the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami in March.

?The sympathy and support we have received from AWWA members and water professionals around the world encouraged us enormously when our country was paralyzed by a disaster on an unprecedented scale,? Misono said through an interpreter. ?We now see the depth of our ties with AWWA and the global water community in a new light, and truly appreciate your friendship.?

On Wednesday, Mantua passed the gavel on to new AWWA President Jerry Stevens. Stevens is a 36-year member of AWWA and the general manager of the West Des Moines (Iowa) Water Works. He aims to provide leadership and skill training for young professionals in the next year.

ACE12 will be in Dallas, June 10-14, 2012.

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