California Water Environment Association                                                           September  2010
Leader Link

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

In This Issue:

New Look for CWEA Web Site

Awards Season is Here!

Help Your New CWEA Local Section Members Experience The Value of Belonging

State of The Association Webcast on E-Bulletin

Tri-Counties Section Boosts Vendor Support With 'Vendor Walk Grand Prize Drawing' 

Start a Students and Young Professionals Committee at Your Local Section

CWEA Board Nominations

Staff Contacts

Leadership Calendar

New Look for CWEA’s Web Site 

CWEA has redesigned its web site with a fresh new look and easier navigation. A few new features have been added such as a dynamic quick links section on the home page, online credit card processing for job postings, and real-time updates on the member directory.

Under Ann Heil’s leadership, the Member Communications Task Force has put in countless volunteer hours redesigning the site based on member feedback and the forward-looking vision of the Task Force.  The new graphic design was even done by volunteers on the Task Force which allowed us to save on design costs.

With this shift, we have also moved to our new web host, Moonstone Interactive. They have taken our large and complex web site, along with the design specifications of our Member Communications Task Force, and guided our way to making our vision a reality.    

The Member Communications Task Force work isn’t over yet. A second phase of the web site upgrade is in the works with the Task Force considering improved navigation and site architecture, a single log on for the entire site, and an enhanced members-only area.  

The Task Force is also working on updating our Wastewater Professional member print publication. The Member Communications Task Force is very active and is involved in high profile projects that benefit all CWEA members. The Task Force is always looking for active members who care about CWEA’s member communications. If you are interested in joining the Task Force, you are encouraged to contact Member Communications Task Force Chair Ann Heil at [email protected].


Awards Season is Here

2010 CWEA awards forms are available on the web at Please make sure to use these forms as templates for your CWEA local section awards. This standard process will uphold the integrity and consistency of the program. Please forward comments and concerns to [email protected] so we can continue to streamline and improve the clean water awards.


Help Your New CWEA Local Section Members 
Experience The Value of Belonging

Every year many new members join CWEA because they attended a state-level or regional CWEA conference or have participated in CWEA’s certification program. Sometimes, these new members do not participate in any other activities (for example local section activities), and let their membership lapse after the first year.

Much of the time, these new  members don’t get a chance to experience the real value that CWEA can bring to their professional lives and are at risk of  just tossing their membership in the trash once that annual renewal reminder comes around. During any given month it is not uncommon for hundreds of new members to be taken off our CWEA member roster as they decide not to renew, or just decide to do nothing. Obviously, these members saw some value in CWEA and became a member when they joined, but for at least some of them that value eventually must have flickered and burned out. As you have probably have heard before, much less effort is required to keep a member than recruit a new member.

CWEA local sections are ideally suited to cultivating a sense of value for new members.  Members that participate in CWEA local section activities are more likely to be happy with their membership and continue to renew their membership because they have experienced the value of belonging to CWEA. They are also more likely to volunteer and work their way up the leadership ranks.  

There are probably as many ways to encourage members to experience the value of belonging to a CWEA local section as there are members. Here are a few ideas for your local section to get started:  

  • Make a personal welcome call from Board members or other local section leaders to new members.

  • Send a special welcome note or package including upcoming events and local section benefits to new members.

  • Offer new member orientations, receptions, and/or after work social events.

  • Make sure new members feel comfortable and included when they attend a local section event for the first time.  Assign a buddy to introduce them around.

  • Always have name badges at events to help new members learn names and make new connections.

  • Offer new members a discount voucher or coupon for a first time local section event.

  • Send new members a list of volunteer and leadership opportunities. 

If you have any other ideas to encourage checkbook members to become active member (things that worked, didn’t work, or just ideas) send them to Chris Lundeen [email protected] and we will share them in the next Leader Link.  

How do you identify new members? They are listed in your monthly membership roster that is sent to your local section president, treasurer, membership director, or other designated local section leader. You may also want to offer similar incentives to those listed as lapsed on your roster— it’s never too late!


State of The Association Webcast on E-Bulletin

Thanks to the irrepressible volunteer spirit of the talented Alec Mackie, we now have our May 4th State of the Association webcast posted in E-Bulletin!  Alec took the PowerPoint and the audio recording and merged the two together.  The results are not bad given we weren’t planning on posting this event as a webinar.  Check it out and let us know what you think by contacting Lola Dvorak at [email protected]


Tri-Counties Section Boosts Vendor Support 
With 'Vendor Walk Grand Prize Drawing'

The Tri-Counties Section (TCS) holds three training workshops per year and vendor support is the main way it is able to offer such great training at a bargain rate. TCS just tried out a brand new event at its September Workshop called the “Vendor Walk Grand Prize Drawing.” Participating vendors contributed an extra $20 dollars which went toward a grand prize of a flat screen TV (the TCS board voted to match funds up to $300 to ensure that it was a nice TV!)  The workshop attendees were given a list of participating vendors and if they learned from 15 of 20 participating vendors about those vendors’ products and got their signature, then their sheet went in the box for the grand prize drawing.   

A survey of the vendors revealed that they thought this was a successful event and it earned an overwhelming thumbs up! More about this event is planned to be published in the E-Bulletin soon. Meanwhile, if you would like to learn more about the TCS Vendor Walk Grand Prize contact TCS President Teresa Kistner at 805-967-4519 ext. 107, or [email protected].


Start a Students and Young Professionals 
at Your Local Section

Megan Yoo, CWEA SYPC Chair

Calling all CWEA local sections! The state-level Students and Young Professionals Committee (SYPC) of CWEA would like to help grow your outreach to the students and young professionals in your area. Our ultimate goal is to have a local section SYPC in each and every CWEA local section, and we can only do this with your help. As you may be aware, many of our local sections have had great success with their SYPCs, and we would like to build and establish a statewide network of CWEA local section SYPCs so that we can all help each other out.

To help out, the state-wide SYPC has created a handbook for CWEA local section SYPCs, and we are more than ready to help you start and build your own local section SYPC! All it takes is one person to champion the cause and start by serving as a local section liaison to the state-wide SYPC. We can help you from there! Please remember, a local section SYPC liaison does NOT have to be a "student" or "young professional" (YP) to be a liaison.

Anyone who is "young at heart" is a "YP for life," and anyone who supports the engagement and growth of students and young professionals is encouraged to email me, Megan Yoo , at [email protected] to help start your local section ' s SYPC today! If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at any time via email or telephone at 949-278-5761.


CWEA Board Nominations for the 2011 Election Due December 20

The CWEA Board of Directors and Executive Committee encourage you to nominate candidates for the following open CWEA Board positions:

  • Vice President from the North (will be President in third year of four-year term);
  • Director at-large from the South (three-year term);
  • Director at-large from the North (serves as CWEA Treasurer in third year of three-year term); and
  • Water Environment Federation (WEF) Delegate Director from the North (three-year term, starting in October 2011; however, attendance at Board meetings starts immediately after April 2011 elections).

Nomination to the Slate
All nomination packets must include a resume of CWEA activities, a recent picture of the nominee and a completed nominee questionnaire. The Executive Committee will review each nomination packet thoroughly, using the questionnaire and resume to select the best and most qualified candidates. Candidates for Vice President will also be interviewed by the Executive Committee, in addition to having their application materials reviewed.

Once that process is completed, the Executive Committee will submit a slate of candidates to the Board, to be voted on during the April elections. The pictures and questionnaire responses of these candidates will be posted on the CWEA web site, so that members have the opportunity to learn about each candidate before the April election.

Nomination by Member Petition Members can also nominate additional candidates for consideration, along with the slate of candidates presented by the Executive Committee. To nominate candidates through this process, be sure to submit petitions to the CWEA office by February 10, 2011 (to verify membership and to meet publication deadlines).


STAFF CONTACTS - 510-382-7800


Latasha King x 110


Publications & Advertising
Lola Dvorak
  x 114


Local Sections, Committees, Leader Link

Chris Lundeen  x 104



Brian Murray x 102


Lola Dvorak  x 114



Leslie Carino x 107


Conferences & Exhibits

Marci Donohoe x 120


Leadership Calendar      





October 14 Southern LS & Committee Leaders Southern Regional Committee Meeting-- Goleta Debra Bogdanoff
[email protected]
November 16 CWEA Leaders Annual Leader Planning Meeting-- Ontario Doubletree Hotel Victoria Rawson
[email protected] 
November 25-26 CWEA offices closed for Thanksgiving Day holiday
December 2 Northern LS & Committee Leaders NRC Meeting-- CWEA Offices, Oakland Rick Staggs
[email protected]
December 20 CWEA Leaders/Members CWEA Board Nominations Due Victoria Rawson
[email protected] 
Dec. 24-Jan.2 CWEA offices closed for holidays
January 15 LS Leaders and TCP Committee Members Kirt Brooks Memorial Water Environment Scholarship Application Deadline Connie Leonard 
[email protected]
January 28-29 CWEA Leaders CWEA Board Meeting
San Diego Catamaran Hotel
Victoria Rawson
[email protected] 
Full CWEA Event Calendar
Leader Link: Linking Local Sections, Committees, Board Liaisons, and Past Presidents
For more info contact us at [email protected]