ORLANDO, Fla. – The Texas Rural Water Association received the State Association of the Year award at the annual Tribute to Excellence awards ceremony, held on Sept. 13 at the WaterPro Conference in Orlando, Fla.
“The most prestigious and most honored award is the State Association of the Year,” said Paul Fulgham, chair of the NRWA Awards Committee. “It is presented to the state association that projects a team effort in all areas of professional association operations and membership service. The State Association of the Year has excelled in all categories of the award and this is only accomplished by teamwork, strong leadership and member support.”
“With an active membership of 750 utilities providing water and wastewater to over 2.5 million customers throughout the state, this state is able to offer many resources and programs to benefit their members,” Fulgham said. “Last year, this association trained over 5,100 individuals in all aspects of water and wastewater management through classroom and online courses, regional workshops and conferences.”
The South Dakota Association of Rural Water Systems won the award for Outstanding Achievement in Communications, Publications and Public Relations.
“In addition to their quarterly magazine, South Dakota also publishes a consumer magazine and 3 digital newsletters that create a unified voice for rural water in their state,” Fulgham said. “Their website features an interactive map of rural water systems, online class and event registration, digital magazines, services and fees, live Facebook and Twitter feeds, as well as history, staff contacts, and promote NRWA Affinity Programs.”
The Ohio Rural Water Association was awarded for Outstanding Achievement in Legislative Initiatives.
“Ohio is dedicated to make sure members understand the importance of legislative work,” Fulgham said. “Their legislative work is always reviewed, discussed, and analyzed by their members while educating and informing their members about legislative issues that are important to rural water.”
The Missouri Rural Water Association won the award for Outstanding Achievement in Technical Assistance for their work in responding to severe floods.
“December 30, 2015 saw three days of non-stop rainfall that completely flooded a water plant, threatening the water supply for 20,000 residents,” Fulgham explained. “While waiting for the waters to recede at the plant, levels in storage tanks dropped rapidly as customers placed high demand upon water reserves.
“Missouri’s Circuit Riders worked through the holidays, spending hours of time away from their families to ensure the town had safe, quality drinking water quickly and efficiently.”
The Rural Water Association of Utah was awarded the Outstanding Achievement in Training award.
“Working with a variety of state and federal agencies, allowed Utah to plan a deliberate system from simply providing CEU credits, to carrying out a comprehensive educational program that moves our entire industry toward common goals and objectives,” Fulgham said. “Utah trains thousands every year with their incredible training programs.”
The Wisconsin Rural Water Association won the Outstanding Achievement in Member Services award.
“Taking care of members is their number one priority, and the strength of the association is directly related to the strength of their members,” Fulgham said.
Winners of all awards are selected from state associations that submitted an application. Each submission was rated individually by each committee member with the names and locations redacted to make scoring as anonymous as possible.
The awards committee also includes Roger Freund from Wisconsin, Ed Savage from Vermont and Dennis Nadeau from New Hampshire.