California Water Environment Association                                                                  March  2009
Leader Link

News, insights, and advice for CWEA's volunteer leaders                     

In This Issue:

Local Section Webinar

6 Bloggers Needed

Board Economic Response

FY 07-08 Reports

2009-2010 Board Nominees

Young Professional Membership Update

Leadership Calendar

Standing Committee and Local Section Budgets Due April 30

Get your Standing Committee and Local Section budgets and work plans for FY 09-10 in by April 30th so they can be considered in CWEA’s upcoming budget cycle.  Your Board Liaison can help you through the process and you can access the forms directly online (through Mbr/Leader Resources, I’m a leader, Committee, Writing Reports and Articles – or  Send your work plans and budgets to [email protected] 

As we enter the budget drafting cycle for FY 09-10, be sure to let your Board Liaison know if you have ideas for new products or programs CWEA should consider.  You and your Board Liaison can discuss the relationship of your idea with the strategic plan and resources. You Board Liaison can also assist you in completing the new product development form so our Planning & Program D evelopment ( PP D ) Committee can consider your proposal.  If PP D gives it the green light, then it would go to the Board for consideration. 

 Leader Links  
Financial Reporting Forms and Info

Board Liaison List

Local Section Treasurers' Training Webinar 
March 23, 25, and 30

Calling all CWEA local section treasurers...spend an hour, save your sanity.  Participate in a free one-hour webinar training to help make your job as treasurer easier.  Local Section Presidents are welcome too. CWEA is hosting a webinar to help prepare new CWEA local section treasurers for their terms over the next year or so. For your convenience, there are there 3 dates to choose from: Monday March 23, 12pm to 1pm; Wednesday March 25, 3pm to 4pm; Monday March 30, 12pm to 1 pm.

What You’ll Learn at the Webinars

  • Why financial reports are so important to the proper functioning of CWEA.
  • The basic budget reporting and planning requirements.
  • How to complete the budget and planning forms.
  • Come ready with your questions and helpful advice you would like to share with your fellow treasurers.

Leader Links  
For more info contact Director of Member & Leader Services Chris Lundeen at 510-382-7800 x104 or [email protected].

CWEA Website Committee Needs Six Blog Editors

Wanted: three pioneering volunteers from the North and three from the South to become experimental CWEA bloggers. We’re beta-testing an expanded E-Bulletin using blogging software; in addition, we want to save CWEA funds used for website programming. A three month pilot is planned.

We’ll teach you the web based software and provide all the support. You bring: access to local section stories and photos; enjoy editing news; strong spelling and grammar; ability to post once or twice a week and moderate website skills (such as using on-line banking, Flickr or Expedia).

Some samples: Website Committee’s first attempt; WEF’s weblog: and  LABS’ weblog

Become a pioneering CWEA blogger, to volunteer please contact Alec Mackie, LABS Director, at [email protected] or 714-428-4614. Editors will report to Chris Lundeen , CAE, Director of Member & Leader Services.

Perhaps one day our blog will be as popular as – only with a lot more wastewater stories and a lot less Paris Hilton.

Leader Links:
For more info, or to volunteer contact Alec Mackie at
[email protected] or Chris Lundeen at [email protected].


CWEA Board Responds to Economy

In this tough economy the CWEA Board remains focused on fulfilling our core mission of educating and certifying wastewater professionals while keeping CWEA resilient and relevant for you. CWEA’s financial health is strong…and we’re managing our money carefully. In order to prepare for what might be an uncertain future, the Board did some scenario-thinking at its February meeting…to consider how CWEA would be best positioned over the next 3 years to protect our ability to train and certify if the economy is weak or strong and volunteer resources are scarce or abundant.  The Board found there were common implications in the four scenarios explored as well as common strategies that would help CWEA prepare for or adapt to each scenario.  This work will be used to help prepare the upcoming fiscal year program of work and budget.

The Operations Committee of the Board reviewed the annual program of work and proposed budget-savings ideas, including postponing major web site work until FY 09-10 and combining two issues of E-Bulletin into one, adopted by the Board.  The Board and staff continue to monitor our cash flow and key revenue indicators very closely. Membership, conference attendance, and certification applications are picking up and certification renewals are on track.  At the halfway point of our fiscal year, we are anticipating ending the year under budget on both income and expenses and close to the net bottom line budgeted. 

FY 07-08 Annual Report and President's Message

Your CWEA Board continued its focus on fulfilling our core mission of educating and certifying wastewater professionals while keeping CWEA resilient and relevant for you.  CWEA’s financial health remained strong…and we’ve managed our money carefully.   Review the audited Statement of Financial Position at June 30, 2008 and Statement of Financial Activities for FY 07-08.  Healthy reserves in FY 07-08 allowed us to invest in projects to bring you more value.  Our FY 07-08 bottom line (i.e. “net income”) was negative, reflecting the planned use of reserves (along with one-time, on-paper effect of transition to accrual accounting).  Investments in fulfilling our mission included:

  • Offering training on the Sewer System Overflow Waste Discharge Requirement (SSO WDR) at an affordable rate through a memo of agreement with the State Water Board.  Check out our training at . We’re also actively leading the effort to gather industry input for a triennial SSO WDR review expected in 2009.  Stay current at 
  • Rolling out computer-based testing after 71 years of paper-and-pencils tests, allowing applicants to take one of 21 competency-based certification tests at a time and location that is convenient for them and get results much faster.  First test-takers tell us it’s “painless.”
  • Funding a new manual “Building the Wastewater Utility Brand: Practical Advice for Increasing Trust, Support, and Investment.”  Offered to help your organization improve the way it communicates its value to your community, especially important in tight economic times. Free for CWEA members at
  • Funding “No Drugs Down the Drain” campaign.  Find free templates for your agency at

Committed volunteers throughout our Local Section, Committee, and Board structure, along with a small-but-mighty staff, bring CWEA’s mission to life every day.  In December 2008 we broke 9,128 members—thanks to you and your continued support.  CWEA’s ability to fulfill its mission can make us all proud. Here are some highlights from this past year:

Education & training

In FY 07-08 we trained more than 6,500 wastewater professionals (much more when you add in our Local Section training)

More than 5,250 wastewater professionals now hold CWEA certification. Offering computer-based testing makes scheduling and taking the test much more convenient for applicants and gives us the opportunity to expand our testing capability in the future, for example showing pictures related to test questions.

Member Services
This past year we added a new CWEA member-only benefit…free member-only 24/7 online access to 29 CWEA certification study guides and manuals of good practice. 

Your voice

CWEA has developed a strong working relationship with the State Water Board and our wastewater association partners, particularly on the regulatory and legislative front.  Our recent work on your behalf includes commenting on:

  • AB 2986, Sewer Report Card Bill…a letter-grade bill intended to reduce sewage spills and improve the performance of wastewater infrastructure (ultimately vetoed by the Governor)
  • Operation Certification regulation amendments
  • Water Quality Enforcement Policy
  • Water Quality Improvement Initiative
  • Recycled Water Policy
  • Green Initiative

CWEA also participates in several State Water Board stakeholder groups and advisory committees:

  • CIWQS Users Group
  • Operator Certification Advisory Committee

CWEA also participates in several industry workgroups and advisory committees, for example:

  • Tri-TAC, a technical advisory committee founded by CWEA, League of California Cities, and California Association of Sanitation Agencies.  Together with CWEA, these associations’ members collectively treat and reclaim more than two billion gallons of wastewater each day. Tri-TAC's mission is to improve the overall effectiveness and accountability of environmental programs that impact publicly owned treatment works (POTWs) in California by working with State and Federal regulatory agencies and interest groups on matters related to POTWs.
  • California Wastewater Climate Change Group recently started in order to explore and comment on the technical issues related to the scoping plan for AB 32 (Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006).

As a Member Association of the Water Environment Federation (WEF), CWEA is represented on federal issues such as stimulus funding and U.S. EPA Draft Strategy on Climate Change.  CWEA is a member of the Clean Water Exchange Network sponsored by WEF, the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, and the American Public Works Association. 

In good or bad economic times, CWEA is here for you.  It makes good economic sense that well trained staff means your compliance improves and your risk of fines and costly accidents drops.  Check out the value of CWEA membership for you and your employer at
Board Nominees Slate for 2009-2010

Board nominees for the 2009-10 slate are:

  • Jody Allen, Superintendent with South Placer Municipal Utility District., for Vice President from the North (becoming President in 2011-12); 

  • Gayle Tupper, Pre-Treatment and Pollution Prevention Supervisor with EBMUD, for WEF D elegate D irector from the North; 

  • Roanne Ross, Managing Engineer with Whitley Burchett & Associates,  for     Director-at-Large from the North (becoming Treasurer in 2011-12); 

  • Jon Hay, Engineering Manager with Black and Veatch, for D irector-at-Large from the South.

Additionally, incoming Southern Regional Committee Chair Debra Bogdanoff , and incoming Technical Certification Program Chair John Mays will be appointed to the 2009-10 Board following recommendations by their respective committees in April.  Debra is a Civil Engineer with the Los Angeles County Sanitation District.  John is a Sanitary Engineer Associate with the City of Los Angeles .

Leader Links:  
Check the Annual Business Meeting page for more info on nominees.

Updated Model for Local Section
and Bylaws now Available

At its February meeting, the Board approved a new model for local section constitutions and bylaws that reflects the constitution changes CWEA made a couple of years ago to comply with the California Corporations Code.  Several local sections have told us they are going to be revising and refreshing their constitution and bylaws…use this model as a template. 

Leader Links:  
Model Constitution & Bylaws:

Or send a message to [email protected] to get a Word version.

Young Professionals  Introductory Membership 
Offer Continued Indefinitely

The Board of Directors approved continuing indefinitely our introductory offer to Young Professional members of CWEA and WEF that includes half-off membership dues.  Local sections get $6 in annual dues for each YP on their roster. Right now we have about 75 YPs state-wide. A Young Professional is a water quality professional in any vocation with five years or less work experience in the industry and who is under the age of 35.  This program is valid for the first three years of WEF and CWEA membership. This program is available only to new WEF & CWEA member applicants and WEF & CWEA Student members.

Leader Links:  
CWEA Membership Page


STAFF CONTACTS - 510-382-7800


Latasha King x 110


Publications & Advertising

Chris Lundeen x 104


Local Sections & Committees

Chris Lundeen  x 104


SSO-WDR Training

Serena Miller x 115


Brian Murray x 102


Awards & Leaderlink

Jodee Schwan x 125



Leslie Carino x 107


Conferences & Exhibits

Marci Chase x 120




Leadership Calendar





March 23,25,30 Local Section Treasurers & Presidents Treasurers Training Webinars Chris Lundeen [email protected]  

April 9

Local section and committee leaders

Wastewater Professional articles due for July Issue.

Chris Lundeen [email protected]

April 20

Local section and committee leaders

E-Bulletin articles due for June issue.

Chris Lundeen [email protected]

April 28 - May1 All leaders welcome 81st Annual Conference Mary Chen
[email protected]

April 28

All leaders welcome

CWEA Board meeting, Palm Springs .

Victoria Rawson [email protected]

April 30

local section and committees

Annual work plan & budgets for FY 2009-10 due for local sections and committees.

Brian Murray [email protected]

May 2

All leaders welcome

CWEA Board meeting, Palm Springs .

Victoria Rawson [email protected]

July 31

local section and committees

FY 2008-2009 Annual Statement, Reserve Fund report, and Inventory Report due for local section and committee.

Chris Lundeen [email protected]

Leader Link: Linking Local Sections, Committees, Board Liaisons, and Past Presidents
For more info contact us at [email protected]