44th Annual Conference
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44th Annual Conference - February 18 - 20, 2019


Presenters and Speakers

Ball, Pat—Gross-Wen Technologies
Mr. Ball is Vice President of Operations for Gross-Wen Technology.  He is also an instructor for the Des Moines Area Community College.  He has 40 years’ experience in Water and Wastewater Systems with a Grade 4 Wastewater Operator Certification.  In the past he worked for the City of Cedar Rapids for 34 years and Stanley Consultants for 4 years.

Bidar, Taroon—IDNR/Environmental Protection Division
Taroon has been with the department since 1996, working in the Water Supply Engineering Section.  He has a B.S. in Civil Engineering and MS in Civil/Environmental Engineering from Iowa State University with emphasis on Water and Waste Water Treatment.  He is a registered professional engineer in the State of Iowa.

Bilek, Tony—Mc2 Inc.
Tony has 25+ years in water and wastewater business, specializing in Sales, Consulting and Service of water and wastewater systems.

Brons, Gary—McClure Engineering Company
Gary graduated from UNI in 2005 with a Bachelors in Earth Science and completed his Masters of Business at the University of Iowa in 2014.  He began his career in the water industry with IRWA mostly as the Water Training Specialist.  In 2013, Gary joined McClure Engineering Company. He is a project manager on the water and wastewater team.  He has 13 years of water and wastewater industry experience.

Brush, Steve—Ferguson Waterworks
Steve has been with Ferguson Waterworks for the past 13 years most recently as the North Central IT Manager.  He has been in the water industry since 1985, initially with a public water utility managing many of the operations including the meters and meter reading systems.  The past 20 years has been in the private sector with the metering industry serving as a meter systems specialist and sales representative.  Steve earned his BA from Simpson College in Business Administration and his Masters of Public Administration from Drake University.

Campbell, Bob—Iowa DNR Water Supply
Bob has worked 15 years in the Iowa DNR Water Supply Engineering Section, and is a Grade II certified water treatment operator.  He is a licensed professional engineer in Iowa.

Carmichael-Stanley, Sara—Iowa Department of Public Health
Sara’s background includes over 10 years of public health and water quality work.  Currently, she serves as the Water Fluoridation Coordinator for the Iowa Department of Public Health.  She is dedicated to providing the most up-to-date scientific information on water quality and water fluoridation.  She monitors fluoride levels throughout the state, creates and disseminates education materials, and acts as the state liaison on water fluoridation for water operators and the general public.

Coburn, Chad—Poweshiek Water Association
Chad is not only the longtime director of the Poweshiek Water Association but is a writer, videographer, marketer of various endeavors, bow hunting mentor and archery coach.  He also guides 5th grad students to improve their life skills utilizing a positive mindset, improved emotion control and being present in the now. 

Coburn, Joshua—Brownells
Joshua Coburn is a speaker, mentor, host, author, world traveler, 5% athlete and social media engagement professional.  His work impacts millions of people all over the world daily and you’ve probably seen him on television networks such as MTV, VH1 and Fox News.  He has spent his life and career redefining stereotypes, living his passions and assisting others in living their best lives!

Contag, Jonathan—FOX Engineering
Jonathan Contag is a Project Engineer with FOX Engineering.  He is involved on both the water and wastewater side of consulting.  Jonathan has written three nutrient reduction strategies ranging from complex activated sludge systems to single SBR systems.

Dangel, Chrissy—U. S. EPA
Chrissy Dangel is an Environmental/Public Health Scientist with the USEPA, currently working for the Water Security Division in the Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water.  Her primary responsibility is leading the Public Health/Healthcare Interdependencies work, along with promoting the Community Based Water Resiliency Outreach for the active and Effective team of the Water Security Division.  Prior to her work with the Water Security Division at the USEPA, Chrissy worked with the Department of Defense onboard Camp Pendleton, California. 

Elsinger, Joe—MSA Professional Services, Inc.
Joe is a Municipal Engineering Team Leader with MSA Professional Services, Inc., based in the Cedar Rapids office.  His experience includes a broad range of water and wastewater applications working with clients across eastern Iowa.

Enright, Theresa—Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Theresa is the DNR's State Revolving Fund (SRF) Coordinator. She oversees the operating agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, provides coordination between programmatic and financial functions of the Clean Water and Drinking Water SRF programs, and develops new uses for the SRF programs. Ms. Enright has been with the DNR since June 2018. Her previous experience includes financial and programmatic administration of multiple Homeland Security and Emergency Management Program Grants issued through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Theresa is a Certified Grants Manager and has a B.S. in Health Sciences from the University of Iowa.

Erlitzki, Ronit—AdEdge Water Technologies
Ronit has more than 20 years of experience in biochemistry research, operations management, and business development. As a research scientist she performed basic scientific research, and published articles in peer-reviewed journals before she started a career in CleanTech business development, focusing on water and water technology, in 2009. She has been involved in assisting technology companies to promote their products by initiating and establishing business opportunities and collaborations with governmental and private organizations.
Ronit’s approach to water treatment is based on identifying true customer needs, and matching and implementing suitable and innovative solutions to resolve water quality issues in an environmentally friendly and cost-effective manner. Ronit believes that honesty and complete transparency is the key for sustainable and trustworthy business relationship and is proud to be a team member of AdEdge, working with a knowledgeable, agile, and integrous team of water professionals. Ronit was born and raised in Israel, where water scarcity lead to technological innovation and effective management of water supply, and earned her Ph.D. in Medical Sciences from The Technicon, Israel Institute of Technology. She is fluent in English and Hebrew.

Evans, Kelly—ISG
Kelly Evans, PE is a water and wastewater operator and licensed environmental engineer for ISG.  Kelly has extensive experience working with municipalities and industries in water and wastewater design and construction administration.  She also helped to lead the design for the Prestage/Eagle Grove project.

Fields, Chad—Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Chad Fields is an Iowa DNR groundwater hydrologist and modeler for the Water Use and Source Water Protection programs.  Chad received his MS degree in Environmental Science from the University of Northern Iowa in 2004. Since then he has worked for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources for numerous surface and groundwater projects. Chad’s main areas of interest include tracking Iowa’s public wells, accurately modeling groundwater movement, and building new geospatial datasets from historic records.

Freking, Doug—Hawkins Water Treatment Group
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Gastineau, Janet—Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Janet earned a BS in Animal Ecology from Iowa State University and an MS in Environmental Studies from Southern Illinois University.  She has been employed with the IDNR since 1991.  She was originally hired to perform stream use designations, waste load allocations and to issue Section 401 Water Quality Certifications for dredge and fill projects.  She moved to the Field Office # 5 in 1995 and her current responsibilities are in complaint investigations and inspections/compliance in wastewater treatment, water treatment, underground storage tanks and emergency response.

Golab, James—Regional Water
James received a B.S. in Geology from Mercyhurst University, a M.S. in Geology from the Colorado School of Mines and a PhD in Geology from the University of Kansas.  He has worked as a geologist for the U. S. Geological Survey and as a Postdoctoral Researcher Associate with the Kansas Geological Survey.

Halls, Cassandra—2 The Top
Cassandra Halls founded 2 The Top in 2007 offering a wide variety of business consulting services to corporate, non-profit and local governmental entities.  Areas of specialty include: strategic planning, project management, research services, training facilitation, workforce development, succession planning and operations process improvements.  Halls spent 10 years of her career in public administration in Iowa and has also served in the Vice President role in both non-profit and corporate operations.  Halls utilizes her broad perspective to drive solutions to the challenges encountered in many work cultures and environments.  She earned a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration from William Penn University.

Harger, Jon—Vessco, Inc.
Jon has been in water and wastewater treatment equipment designs and sales since 1985, at General Filter and Vessco Inc.  He has an associate Degree in Applied Science in Mechanical Engineering from Kirkwood Community College.

Helmers, Matt—Iowa State University
Dr. Helmers is a Professor in the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering and the Director of the Iowa Nutrient Research Center.  He is actively engaged in research and extension on nutrient reduction efforts.

Hill, Patrick—Triplepoint Environmental
Patrick Hill is a Lagoon Specialist with Triplepoint Environmental.  Triplepoint are the lagoon experts who believe that “Lagoons Do It Better” – focusing exclusively on helping lagoon owners across North America to meet any effluent limit in a way that’s cost effective and low maintenance.

Johnson, Chris—Gurney and Associates
Chris has over 25 years’ experience in the Water/Wastewater industry as a consultant and manufacturer’s representative.  He is currently President of Gurney and Associates.  His experience includes design and equipment and technology supply for wastewater and water treatment facilities, pumping stations, and flow measurement systems.  He has a Bachelor of Science-Civil Engineering degree with University of Nebraska.  In the past, Chris has served as president of the Nebraska Water Environment Association.  

Korman, Michael—Environmental Dynamics International Inc
Mike has almost 30 years in the wastewater industry including experience with construction, manufacturing, product development and customer service.  His current post includes system evaluations, trouble shooting and optimization (energy, operational and maintenance).

Law, Cathy—Iowa Rural Water Association
Cathy has been with the Iowa Rural Water Association for over 17 years.  She is currently the Member Services and Events Coordinator and works on various projects promoting Iowa’s water quality and the water and wastewater industry as a whole.

Lawrence, Martin—AdEdge Water Technologies, LLC
Martin received a degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Florida.  After graduating, he spent years as a Process Engineer designing, starting up and troubleshooting drinking water and wastewater treatment systems.  Today his role as a Technical Sales Engineer for AdEdge Water Technologies allows him to continue to focus on the technical aspects of drinking water treatment while also presenting AdEdge’s innovative offerings to the water treatment community.

McCusker, Julia—CoBank
Julia McCusker is a Senior Relationship Manager in CoBank’s Electric Distribution, Water and Community Facilities Division. In that role, she works with the bank’s rural water and wastewater customers.  Ms. McCusker started her career at CoBank in 2000 and has worked as a portfolio analyst in Risk Management as well as in credit and relationship roles in the Power Supply and Electric Distribution divisions before joining Water Services in 2012.  Ms. McCusker has a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Texas and a Graduate School of Banking degree from the University of Colorado.

Menner, Bill—Iowa Rural Development Council
Bill Menner is the founder of The Bill Menner Group, a consulting firm focused on community development, rural partnerships and economic vitality.  Previous to the creation of that small business, Menner served the Obama Administration as Iowa’s state director of USDA Rural Development.  In that position, he oversaw an organization that provides housing, community facility, energy and business support across Rural Iowa.  Between 2009 and 2017, Rural Development invested more than $5 billion in loans and grants in rural communities and businesses in Iowa.  Prior to his White House appointment to USDA, Menner served as executive director of Poweshiek Iowa Development, a county-wide economic development organization based in Grinnell.  In addition to acting as the county economic development director, he led downtown development, historic preservation and tourism efforts in the City of Grinnell.   Menner also spent 14 years as a public radio reporter, seven covering government and politics – including the 1992 and 1996 Iowa caucuses.  A native of the Cleveland, Ohio-area, Menner is a graduate of Ohio State University with a BA in journalism and an MA in political science.  

Metz, Shane—City of Dike
Shane Metz is the City of Dike Utilities Superintendent.  He has been with the city since late 2010.  Shane has worked on the cities treatment plant improvement project for the past few years.  You can also find him volunteering his time towards many community events such as the town’s annual Watermelon Days celebration.   Shane has also participated in his church mission trip to Haiti.

Miller, Angie—Professional Computes Solutions LLC
Angie Miller is the Business Services Manager at Professional Computers Solutions LLC and has worked in the utility industry for twenty-seven years.  At PCS, Angie directs all aspects of the CIS/Billing solutions including all customer facing solutions, i.e., web customer portals and mobile phone apps.  She has an accounting degree from the University of Northern Iowa and has obtained her CPA designation.

Narber, Dan—Iowa Economic Development Authority
Dan is a Project Manager for the Iowa Economic Development Authority responsible for the general administration of the State Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program to assist communities with financing to meet their infrastructure needs.  He has served in this capacity for 21 years.  Dan also serves as the Labor Standards Specialist for the IEDA’s federal programs.

Nemeth-Harn, Julie—Harn R/O Systems, Inc.
Julie Nemeth-Harn is the Vice-President for Harn R/O Systems, Inc.  Prior to employment at Harn R/O she worked in consulting engineering for nine years.  In her current position she has supervised the design, fabrication and start-up of over forty membrane treatment plants. She has also been involved in numerous pilot studies, including micro and ultrafiltration technologies.  Ms. Nemeth-Harn has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering and is a registered professional engineer in the State of Florida.  Julie was the American Membrane Technology Associations Member of the Year in 2015 and is a current AMTA Board Member.

Peters, David—Iowa State University
David Peters is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Extension Rural Sociologist at Iowa State University.  His primary research areas include social and economic change in rural communities, rural demography, rural poverty and inequality, rural crime, and adoption of agricultural and other technologies.  Previously, he was an Assistant Professor of Agricultural Economics at the U. of Nebraska.  He has worked as a senior researcher for the Missouri Department of Economic Development; and the Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI) at the U. of Missouri.  He holds a B.S. cum laude from the University of Minnesota; and an M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Missouri.

Rowden, Bob—Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Bob has served as a Hydrologic Technician and Geologist with the Iowa Geological Survey from 1986 to 2014.  In 2014 he moved to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources in the Source Water Protection Program.

Sand, Kate—USDA Rural Development
Kate Sand, Iowa’s Community Program Director, began her career with USDA Rural Development in 2004.  During the past 15 years she has held a variety of positions within the agency while working in the Le Mars, Humboldt and Indianola Area Offices as well as the Iowa State Office.  She has assisted in rural Iowans, communities and businesses through the administration of USDA Rural Development’s Housing Programs, Business Programs and Community Programs.  Sand is a native of Joice, Iowa, in rural Worth County.  She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Administration from Buena Vista University and a Master’s degree in Political Science from the University of Iowa.

Schnieders, Adam—Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Adam has worked in various roles for water quality programs within the Iowa Department of Natural resources for the past 18 years, including a role coordinating the state’s water quality standards efforts, and serving as the NPDES program supervisor. Adam was a leader in the development of Iowa’s Nutrient Reduction Strategy that brings the point and nonpoint source sectors together in a common statewide plan to reduce nutrients in Iowa’s waters and those of its downstream neighbors. Schnieders now serves as Water Quality Resource Coordinator, which involves working across Iowa state government to affect improved water quality, especially in the area of nutrient reduction. Adam plays an active role in a number of workgroups, including the Gulf of Mexico Hypoxia Taskforce, the EPA/state Nutrient Working Group, and began serving as Co-Chair of the Association of Clean Water Administrators Nutrients Policy Committee in 2014 and Chair of the Water Quality Executive Committee for the Upper Mississippi River Basin Association in 2017.

Shawver, Gary—Shawver Well Co. Inc.
Gary has a degree in Business from Upper Iowa University (1972) and has spent 36 active years in the water well industry.  He owned and operated Shawver Well Co. Inc. of Fredericksburg, IA until 2013 at which time he retired and sold his business to his employees.  He attained his Master Certification in Well Drilling form the National Groundwater Association and spent 3 years as the NGWA Director.  Since retirement he writes columns for the Water Well Journal, plus he does some consulting and hobby farming.  He is marred with 4 children.

Shoup, Mike—Bartlett and West
Mike Shoup currently works for Bartlett & West as an Engineering Specialist focused on helping communities with their wastewater collection and treatment issues.  He has worked in the water and wastewater industry for the past 19 years.  Mike has a B. S. in Civil Engineering and a M. S. in Environmental Engineering, both from the University of Iowa.

Sievers, Julie—Iowa Department of Natural Resources 
Julie is the Environmental Specialist Senior at the IDNR Field Office 3 at Storm Lake.  She works in the drinking water program area and on special projects.

Skogerson, Amy-The Law Shop by Skogerson McGinn LLC
Amy Skogerson has served as general legal counsel for Southern Iowa Rural Water Association (SIRWA) for the past 15 years, handling a broad spectrum of rural water utility legal issues such as easements and land acquisitions, financing through USDA – Rural Development and private lenders, public construction bidding, open meeting sand open records issues, customer disputes, inter-government al agreements and more.

Snodgrass, John—Viking Industrial Painting
Mr. Snodgrass has worked in Iowa over the last 20 years working with cities and utilities to help with the inspection and maintenance of their water towers.  He currently is a NACE Level 3 Coatings inspector.  He also sits on AWWA National Committee for both the D101 (Tank Inspection standard) and the M42 (Steel Water Storage tanks).  He has conducted hundreds of inspections and trainings throughout the country training water professionals on Water Towers.  He is now co-owner of Viking Tank Company that focuses primarily in the upper Midwest.  

Sroka, Jeremy—Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management
Based in Johnston, IA at the Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management Operations Division, Jeremy Sroka is currently the state Critical Infrastructure Protection Coordinator. Jeremy also worked for the Iowa National Guard in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Infrastructure Information Collection Division. He served in the Iowa National Guard and retired in 2015. Jeremy is the State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial Government Coordinating Council Chair and he serves on multiple national level critical infrastructure working groups. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Emergency and Disaster Management at Upper Iowa University.    

St. Pierre, Tina—SUEZ Advanced Solutions
In 2007, Tina joined GE (formerly ZENON) as a commissioning representative.  In the commissioning group, Tina started up drinking water, waste water and industrial water plants across North America and on overseas assignments in Scotland, New Zealand and Spain.  In 2010, Tina joined the North America Process Team as a drinking water process support specialist.  In her current role as a Regional Lifecycle Manager, Tina supports municipalities across the US and Canada to maintain their existing SUEZ facilities.

Tell, Russell—Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Russ Tell works with Iowa DNR Water Supply Engineering in Des Moines, Iowa.  He manages the Private Well Program and provides technical assistance on a variety of water well related topics for WSE, local county health departments, well contractors and the general public.  He is a former NGWA Master Groundwater Contractor with over 25 years of field experience in the drilling industry.  For the past 16 years, he has worked with local, county, and state groundwater related programs.

Van Langen, Dan—City of DeSoto
Dan is the Public Works Director for the City of DeSoto.  He has been employed there for 14 years.  DeSoto is located 1 minutes west of West Des Moines and serves a population of 1045.  Dan has 3 daughters, 12-17 years old and a 9 month old son. 

Wilken, Keith—Iowa Department of Natural Resources
Keith is an Environmental Specialist Senior with Field Office 4 of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.  He has been employed with the IDNR since 2001.  He was previously employed at a municipal water and wastewater facility and a private consulting firm.

Willers, Daniel—FOX Engineering, Inc.
Daniel is a Graduate of Iowa State University with a degree in chemical Engineering.  Over the last 20 years, he has worked for Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufactures and at FOX Engineering.

Zieg, Roger—R. Zieg LLC
Roger Zieg is an electrician with 30 years’ experience including residential, agricultural and industrial settings.  His work was done in the State of Iowa.  He now resides in Arkansas.