Safe and Sustainable Water for Illinois
Greg Swanson, Vice Chair
It has been said that "When the well is dry, we know the worth of
water.” However, it is too late to act when "the well runs dry”. We
must be proactive. Fortunately, ISAWWA
is dedicated to providing resources for the management and advocacy of safe and
sustainable water in Illinois. Advocacy to promote knowledge and appreciation
of the value of water is of particular importance at the present time. Let us
embrace the challenges of public, political and professional water outreach and
expand our collective efforts in these areas, before "the well runs dry.”
Water is the essence of life.
From the microscopic cellular level to the macroscopic planetary level, water is
constantly at play in a myriad of processes throughout the entire hierarchy of
life. However, water is grossly
under appreciated and undervalued in our country. Most people think water comes
from the faucet and have no idea of its source or treatment. Likewise, few care
to think about what happens to water after they flush. Indeed, the growing
concerns associated with safe and sustainable water are not recognized by a
vast majority of the citizens in Illinois.
ISAWWA members are well versed in
the complexities of the water world and the technical, scientific,
environmental and economic issues it entails. We recognize the importance of
water and water systems to the well being of Illinois communities and citizens.
Actually, we are uniquely qualified to elevate the public’s understanding and
appreciation. This work begins on the frontlines of water treatment and distribution,
continues through the offices of utility managers and consulting engineers on into
interactions with municipal, state and federal governments.
A Hopi proverb states "One finger cannot lift a pebble.” This
idea underscores the importance of our collective action through ISAWWA
involvement to ensure safe and sustainable water for Illinois. Certainly, our
individual efforts in the communities and projects we are involved with matter.
But our participation in ISAWWA programs, committees and activities multiplies
our contributions in an exponential fashion. Together, we have a truly powerful impact.
Together, we can elevate public awareness of the value of water and water
infrastructure. Together, we can give water a voice in Springfield and
Washington DC. Together, we can create opportunities for students and young
professionals to explore and to embrace water-related careers on all levels.
ISAWWA members should be aware that
there are a great variety of opportunities to participate in the Association.
Whether you are an operator, a YP, or an engineer, we need your energy and
insights. Please contact a committee chair or board member to explore these
opportunities, which are personally and professionally rewarding. As the ISAWWA
community continues working together to provide resources for the management
and advocacy of safe and sustainable water, our efforts serve to promote
knowledge and appreciation of the value of water throughout Illinois.
I extend my sincere respect and
appreciation to all who choose to contribute to the ISAWWA mission. Each and
every contribution is of crucial importance and is truly valued. Thank you. I
look forward seeing you at Watercon 2014, if not sooner. Enjoy the beauty of