Mark Bennett

First Place
 Tri-Counties Section

Started with the Carpinteria Sanitary District in October 1988 as an OIT. Progressed to a grade 3 operator in 1992. Became the treatment supervisor in 1995 after district reorganization and a major plant upgrade. Working in operations primarily, laboratory duties on the weekend and collection system on call. Along with other certification I possess a Class B commercial drivers license and am a certified crane operator. In 2007 I became the operations manager in charge of the Plant as the CPO, collection system and the District’s ELAP certified laboratory. Obtained my grade 5 operator license in 2014. Joint the local section board of directors in 2015 as the member at large after serving as the operations committee chair for several years. 2021 was my last year on the section board as past president.


The Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers (5S) is used by water environment associations (i.e., those working with sewage and sewage treatment) to honour those who have made a particular contribution to the industry.

Pennsylvania started the High Hat Society in 1937 and used the words "Sludge Shovelers Society" in its initiation ceremony. Later, this became known as the Ted Moses Sludge Shovelers Society. The second Chapter of the Five S Society was formed in Arizona in October 1940, the idea being conceived by A.W. "Dusty" Miller and F. Carlyle Roberts, Jr. There are chapters in many of the United States and in Canada, as well as the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand.

5S chapters do not accept applications, but select potential members. Each inductee receives a badge in the form of a gold tie bar in the shape of a round-nosed shovel.

5S recognizes individuals active in protecting the water environment through participation in Local, State, and/or Federal sponsored activities. 

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