027: Water Nerds Guide to WEFTEC 2018

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2018 was our first WEFTEC experience, however, it occurred the same week as Water Smart Innovations which we were speaking at. We had 36 hours to take in one of the largest conferences in North America. Throughout our careers, although we included wastewater in our education efforts, most of our time was spent on the drinking water side where the perception was that WEF and WEFTEC were only about wastewater. We’ve learned that WEF and WEFTEC are so much more and are truly representative of the One Water message and mindset. We met some amazing people, connected with old friends and met our new friends in real life that we’d only known via social media. We aren’t journalists, we’re storytellers and the story of our experience at WEFTEC 2018 can be summed up in one word: people. We wanted to share them and their stories with you!

WEFTEC is the largest conference of its kind in North America and offers water quality professionals from around the world with the best water quality education and training available today. Also recognized as the largest annual water quality exhibition in the world, the expansive show floor provides unparalleled access to the most cutting-edge technologies in the field; serves as a forum for domestic and international business opportunities; and promotes invaluable peer-to-peer networking among registrants. Curtis Smalley, City of Waco, says, “Everyone in the industry needs to attend WEFTEC at least once, but then WEFTEC is like potato chips: You can’t go just once!”

Top Takeaways:

  • Opening session keynote, Kevin Brown, blew us away. Check out his book The Hero Effect and you’ll get a glimpse of the message he shared with the room. Water nerds are everyday heroes. 
  • Water’s Worth It. Be sure to check out the newly revamped, rebranded, revitalized campaign and, most importantly, use it! Check out the amazing video that debuted at the opening session.
  • Get involved! Find a committee that speaks to what’s most important to you.
  • Thirsty? Try some Pure Water Brew near you and get involved.
  • Get on Twitter! All your water nerd friends are there.

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Show notes:

Tom Kunetz, WEF President

Barry Liner, WEF

Bri Nakamura, WEF

Travis Loop, WEF Director of Communications and Outreach, WEF Words on Water Podcast Host

Dylan Christenson, Black and Veatch

Michael Quamme, Apex Engineering

Mary West-Calcagno, Director of Public Utilities at Moberly, MO

Azya Jackson, Environmental Engineer, Dept of Public Works at LA Sanitation. 

Megan Yoo Schneider, WEF PCOC Chair, President of Seven Management and Consulting, Inc

Julianne LaRock, the outgoing PCOC chair. 

Sharon Miller, WEAT PCOC Chair, North Texas Municipal Water District

Jennifer Louden, Laboratory Manager, Raritan Township Municipal Utilities Authority

Todd Danielson, Director of Water Utilities, Avon Lake Regional Water

Rahkia Nance, WEF

David Martin, KnoWater, Director

Melissa Pomales, Arcadis, Puerto Rico 

Renee Kayal, WEF

Jenny Hartfelder, outgoing President of WEF

Eileen O’Neil, WEF, Executive Director

Steven Drangsholt, Brown and Caldwell, check out the interview he gave at WEFTEC to the Water Online podcast folks.

Tom Ferguson, Vice President of Programming, Imagine H2O

Zac Young, H2nanO

Emily Hicks, FredSense

Elly Perets, CEO and James Perry, Director of Business Development, Utilis. Check out their benchmarking program in November.

Melissa Meeker, Gwinnet County Water Services, Water Innovation Center.

Ian MacLeod, Master Meter, Vice President of Marketing

George Hawkins, Moonshot

Mark Jockers, Clean Water Service, Pure Water Brewing Alliance

Cletus Better, Veolia

Debra Shore, Water Reclamation District of Great Chicago

Cameron McWilliam, Brown and Caldwell

Jennifer Zach, MentorAPM

Paul Crocker, Kansas City Board of Public Utilities

Who we missed. 🙁

Nathan Coey aka the @water_jedi on Twitter, City of Pataskala, OH

Jenelle Armstrong, The Thrasher Group

Christine Wood aka @sewer_chic on Twitter.

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