#1 Give Plenty of Notice
It may seem obvious, but you will want to set the meeting dates well
in advance along with the meeting time and place so that attendees can
make arrangements to be away from work and plan their travel.
Including agenda topics will help sell the meeting to attendees and
will help them to show their employers what the meeting is all about
so they can get time off to attend. Some CWEA
and Local Sections have specific requirements for giving notice of
meetings in their constitutions, bylaws, or standing rules.
#2 Focus on Strategic Discussions
Give your group food for thought in advance of a meeting. Give them
strategic issues so they can begin considering them and maybe even
start to gather feedback from co-workers and other CWEA members. Ask
your group to share calendars and basic updates before the meeting
through email, online calendars, or a web group. This will help you to
maximize precious face-to-face meeting time on strategic issues.
#3 Be Welcoming
Make it easy to find your meeting room. Put up signs and put your
front desk person on watch for meeting attendees navigating their way
through unfamiliar territory. When attendees come into the meeting
room, give them a warm welcome. Lunch, breakfast, fruit, pastries,
snacks, coffee, and soft drinks are always a welcome sight at any
meeting. Ask some members of your group to bring some freshly baked
cookies or other homemade snacks (Southern Regional Committee
Secretary Barbara Santos always brings delicious and innovative home
baked treats to share at SRC meetings). Don’t forget to have
something on hand for vegetarians or others in your group with special
For more tips see The Lazy
Leader’s Guide to Outrageous Results by Cynthia D’Amour.
Local Section & Committee Success Stories
leaders convened in Ontario
on November 16 to share stories of successes and challenges, to learn
about CWEA’s planning and budgeting process, and to network. Attendees
the CWEA Annual Leadership Meeting mostly represented committees and local sections from the Southern
Region, but there were a number of leaders representing the Northern
Region as well. This Issue of Leader
Link will share some of the success stories. Leadership challenges
and other highlights will be covered in February.
Local Section Web Sites Made Easier
CWEA Los Angeles Basin Section (LABS) member Alec Mackie shared his
experience working with local sections to improve their web sites. LABS
has a great web site that runs on WordPress,
a blogging and web publishing tool. A bigadvantage of using WordPress
is that making content updates is easy for anybody with access to the
Internet. It is also easy to customize the look of the web site and to
add different functions like photo galleries, news scrolls, calendars,
and rotating banners. Best
of all, WordPress is a free open source software. Even
though Alec is busy with LABS’ web site and being on the LABS Board,
he still has found time to help with the CWEA Tri-Counties
Section (TCS) and CWEA E-Bulletin
WordPress sites. CWEA offers free hosting for local sections’
web sites, which may choose the web site management technology they
prefer, although Wordpress is recommended for ease of use and support.
Lola Dvorak on staff is
available to assist with setup or questions.
Some Web Tools
Used by CWEA Local Sections and
Open source blogging and web publishing tool. Used for LABS
and TCS web sites and
Contact: Email marketing software that makes it easy to create
professional HTML email campaigns with no tech skills.
Web site design and content update software.
Free FTP tool.
Open source platform for building web sites. Used for the
CWEA San Diego Section (SDS)
Event registration and email marketing. Used by SDS.
CWEA SYPC Mixes Live Events With Video
Sandie Dudley from CWEA’s Students and Young Professionals (SYP)
Committee described last year’s first Students and Young
Conference, which was inspired by the WEF YP Summit on Leadership
in April 2009. The conference focused on cultivating new leaders and
was held at two simultaneous face-to-face sessions in the north and
south with 20-25 attendees at each location and multiple speakers per
location. The presentations were also projected via a live video feed
so that attendees in each location could see and hear all of the
next conference, Working
Together Across Disciplines, will be held March 23 in the north,
south and central valley. The event is free for students and will be
approximately $40 for other attendees. Promotion is done through
social media and universities. CWEA local sections interested in
getting more involved in SYP activities can join monthly conference
calls, participate in Annual Conference events such as speed
mentoring, or contact Sandie
more about CWEA’s SYPC on Facebook.
Planning & Teamwork Result in a Vibrant
CWEA Tri-Counties Section
CWEA Tri-Counties’ Section (TCS) President, Teresa Kistner,
presented the Tri-Counties Section’s strategies for event success.
The TCS event calendar includes events such as the annual golf
tournament, past president picnic/camping trip,
of the Year dinner, southern regional certification study session and
three training workshops. Training workshops are targeted to the rank
and file and include a plant tour and dinner for only $20. Sponsors
help keep costs down.
Top Success Factors:
- Supportive agencies allow staff
volunteer time – 7 year commitment!
- Directors/Chairs work as a team.
- Early January planning; set dates
for the year.
- Advance mass email and Gravity
Flow Line newsletter notification of all events.
- TCS retirees still active; add
history, knowledge & stability to the local section.
- Training to support members who
are earning and maintaining CWEA certification.
- We have fun! A wonderful
camaraderie of Water Protection Professionals.
Southern Sections Collection Systems Committee
Provides Top-Notch Training
Denis Pollak from CWEA’s Southern Sections Collection Systems
Committee described the success of the Committee, which was founded in
1989 to promote collection system training in CWEA’s southern local
sections. The Committee works with local sections to develop workshops
and provides a list of speakers and topics for events. They also offer
sessions in Spanish, which have been very successful. For 2011, the
Committee is developing a ruler to help estimate overflows to hand out
during their workshops.
Tips on Preparing for Successful Workshops:
and organize events well.
out and utilize highly skilled speakers.
a great lunch.
the word out about your event!
with local sections to find event venues.
Pre-Conference Workshops for CWEA Leaders
The CWEA 2011 Annual Conference is right around the corner!
Two free workshops (with free lunch!) are being offered for CWEA
Committee leaders, local section leaders, and CWEA members who are
interested in volunteering for CWEA and increasing their overall
skills are encouraged to attend the Growing
in Leadership workshop on April 12 in
. The workshop will include a mix of classroom and roundtable style
formats to equip members to be successful in their roles as CWEA
leaders, workplace leaders, and beyond. In addition to leadership
training, there will be a complimentary lunch, opportunities to share
and exchange leadership concepts with other workshop attendees, and
time to network with other water quality professionals.
Session Moderator Training
At last year’s Annual Conference in
, the Certification Prep Task Force held a successful Pre-Conference
workshop to train CWEA certification study session moderators in the
techniques of presenting training material to accommodate the
different learning styles of adults preparing for the certification
test. Based on the results and feedback of this workshop, the Task
Force has updated the workshop for AC11.
you hold certification in Grades II, III, or IV, now is your chance to
join CWEA’s “Best of the Best” and learn how to help your fellow
wastewater professionals earn their CWEA certification. You will learn
what VARK is, what your own VARK style is, and you can channel your
VARKism to best serve others. This will be a free session with a great
lunch provided. Upon completion of this workshop you’ll receive
contact hours plus you’ll gain access to standardize training
material relevant to your vocation from the State’s finest trainers.
more details and registration information about these free workshops,
see the Pre-Conference Workshops section on page 6 of the AC11
brochure. Be sure to register soon as space is limited.
Brooks Scholarship Deadline: January 15
Kirt Brooks Memorial Water Environment Scholarship provides annual
awards for individuals attending a college, university, community
college or technical trade school and pursuing a course of study related
to the water environment field. Scholarships are awarded to applicants
who are selected by the Scholarship Committee. Students who are either
members of CWEA or are sponsored by a CWEA member are eligible to apply.
Please help spread the word and encourage your local section members to
submit an application today! Deadline
to apply: January 15th, 2011.
was Kirt Brooks?
CWEA's Kirt Brooks Memorial Water Environment Scholarship was named
after Kirt Brooks, beloved volunteer, leader, Association Manager and
Bulletin editor for several years in the 1980s. Kirt joined the
Association in the mid-60s and became active in the CWEA San Francisco
Bay Section and several other
sections. He served as Chairman of the CWEA San Francisco Bay Section
and later as chairman of the Northern Regional Committee. In 1974, he
was inducted into the Association's 5S society (Select Society of
Sanitary Sludge Shovelers) and was one of the first to be awarded the
Pretreatment Pollution Prevention & Stormwater Committee (P3S)
Committee's Silver Manhole Award.
here for more information.