2022 Management Conference Highlights

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On February 16-17, representatives from utilities around the state gathered in Bowling Green, Kentucky for Kentucky Rural Water Association’s (KRWA) 2022 Management Conference at the Holiday Inn University Plaza & Sloan Convention Center. This year’s conference was one of our largest to date, attended by over 400 participants who took part in presentations to provide our members with an awareness of the opportunities available for the advancement of the water and wastewater utilities in Kentucky and issues facing these utilities.  

Fifty-nine (59) tabletop exhibits enabled industry professionals to demonstrate the latest in supplies, materials, and services appropriate for utilities’ needs. We sincerely appreciate our conference sponsors for their generous contributions toward this successful event: Bell Engineering, Bennett & Williams Environmental Consultants, BL Anderson, Cannon & Cannon, JABO Supply Mineral Labs, Pace Analytical Services, Rustoleum/High Performance Products, S4 Water Sales & Service, Servline by Homeserve, Straeffer Pump & Supply, Trane, and Wet or Dry Tank Inspection. We also would like to recognize our Corporate Partners---Diamond Partners: Core & Main; Hawkins Water Treatment Group; Kentucky Engineering Group; Kenvirons; Raymond James; Thornton, Musso, & Bellemin; and Wascon.  Emerald Partners: ProSource Water Products and United Systems & Software.

Continuing education credit was available for up to twelve hours, with six hours of training offered on both Wednesday and Thursday for operators and water district commissioners.  Bob Cashion, S4 Water Sales and Service, kicked off Wednesday morning’s excellent lineup with “Embrace the Process” Controlling Your Three-Foot World. Sessions continued with Gerald Wuetcher, Stoll Keenon Ogden, discussing Ten Rules for Dealing Effectively with the Public Service Commission; Patrick Keal, Duke Energy Kentucky, wrapped up the morning sessions with Revisions to Kentucky’s Underground Facility Protection Statute.

Lunch was served in the exhibit hall allowing exhibitors time to meet with utility personnel to discuss new products and ideas for the water and wastewater industry.  During the luncheon, KRWA recognized three Water Systems Operations Specialists, KRWA Apprenticeship Program graduates. Congratulations to Corey Embry, Meade County Water District, along with Michael Allen and Chuck Thomason, Logan/Todd Regional Water Commission!  Hawkins Water Treatment Group, a KRWA Corporate Partner, has made a significant investment in the KRWA Apprenticeship Program and the future of our industry by sponsoring $8,000 total in scholarships to be used towards the cost of Related Technical Instruction, the curriculum that complements on-the-job training.  Further, Hawkins has pledged that this will be an annual sponsorship.

Great sessions continued in the afternoon. Mike Ricks, Water Solutions Unlimited, addressed the supply chain issue with Help! Where Did all the Chemicals Go? Joe Burns, KRWA, examined Disaster Response for Utilities in Kentucky. The afternoon sessions concluded with Jacob Puckett, United Systems and Software identifying network security threats with Cyber Security is a Team Sport!

As the first day of our Management Conference ended, attendees had time to relax and enjoy catching up with friends and colleagues and visiting with exhibitors during the Member Appreciation Reception, once again held in our Exhibit Hall.   

 A very interesting and entertaining agenda continued Thursday morning with Robert Mohon, The Neil Group, discussing Customer Service on a Small Budget. Heather Stevenson, KRWA, spoke next on Water Workforce: Valuing the Product and Those that Provide it; and Dustin Horn, Lebanon Water Works Company and Rusty Anderson, KRWA, finished off the morning sessions discussing the power of GPS with Asset Management Dashboards.

 The afternoon sessions continued with Paul Jackson, PACE Analytical Services, presenting PFAS and UCMR5; Arianna Lageman, KRWA, with input from Alicia Jacobs, DOW, continued with Drinking Water Compliance.  Thursday’s sessions concluded with Steve Roetter, The Sherwin Williams Company, providing an overview of Upcoming Changes to NSF Drinking Water System Components Program-(NSF 600)-No Need to be Afraid.