Streamline - Fall 2012 - (Page 9)

FromTheExecutiveDirector BY MYRICA W. KEISER, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Happy Birthday, VRWA! IT WAS EARLY spring of 1987 when the thought of bringing a rural water association to Virginia lingered in the air. Soon a gentleman named Sam Wade (National Rural Water Association) headed to Virginia to meet Jerry Oakes from Grottoes to start the development of “Virginia Rural Water Association.” Yet, still in the mind of Jerry Oakes, was “just what is this organization all about?” names of members of our team who worked for the same mission and the same goals. The mission, the goal and the needs today are much the same as they were 25 years ago, sometimes a little more. It appears that more regulations have been placed on the systems no matter how large or small they are. Budgets due to today’s economy are being stretched as lean as they can be, cuts are being made and systems are facing the fact that few graduates of the next generation desire to work in a water or wastewater plant. The tasks of moving around the state, making introductions and checking the needs of the systems are no different than they were 25 years ago. Just the names and faces have changed (except for one) but the dedication to the association is the same. The pride in the accomplishments of the staff, the pride in the service provided by the staff and the pride in the acknowledgement of the staff are still here. Next April we will be celebrating our 25th annual conference. Plans are to make this the one you will never forget. As we start our planning, we would like to put together a memory scrapbook of the past 25 years. If you have a picture you would like to share or a story you want us to remember, then send them with all the information to Myrica Keiser at We would love to share them at our 25th Annual Technical & Exposition, April 22-24, 2013, at the beautiful Hotel Roanoke and Conference Center. So be sure and mark your calendars now – and plan to celebrate with us. Let me end with saying that, on a personal note, this August marks my own 25 years with the association. It has been 25 wonderful years, ones in which I have been able to raise my children, grown myself and developed many friendships all over the state and the U.S.A. Twenty-five years of being proud to be part of an association that cares who it represents, who is representing and its mission. Thank you for allowing me to share these 25 years with you. I look forward to sharing more with you. Next an office location needed to be chosen. It was decided that it needed to be centrally located. This meant that there would be about the same amount of time to get to any location in the state, including the state capital. So Buena Vista was selected. Next Bob Foster from Florida was hired for the water circuit rider position. Then in August an office manager was selected – me – Myrica Keiser! Of course! The original incorporators were selected, Articles of Incorporation and bylaws were written, IRS status applied for and information gathered for water and wastewater systems under 10,000 population. Decisions were made to divide the state into five regions, requirements for membership, cost of membership and fees and, then, where to start. Soon Jerry and Bob were off and running around the state, introducing themselves and learning the needs of the operators. We had no equipment (leak detectors); there were no cell phones, no computers, just Jerry, Bob and Myrica. Who remembers the computer programs “multi-mate” or “lotus”? Did you know that the first magazines were written and printed (on the copier) in-house? So the adventure, the development, the birth of Virginia Rural Water began … Twenty-five years later, we reflect and let out a little smile and a laugh. Looking back to the beginning brings back fond memories, interesting stories, laughter and, yes, some tears. As the membership grew, so did not only the needs of the systems, but also friendships. Today we wish that a running total of all the field staff miles driven, hours spent, systems visited and training held were kept. It would be a tremendously huge number and one that we can all be proud of. Let’s take a quick walk down memory lane. Do you remember Jerry Oakes, Bob Foster, BJ Blessing, Bob Bryant, Bill Mosley, Steve Childress, Dennis Wanless, Rick Obenshain, Albert Crigger, Eric Short, Linda Capach, Kim Hunt, Andy Crocker, or Don Layne? These are just a few 9

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Streamline - Fall 2012

From the President
From the Executive Director
A Day ( or Two) in the Life of a Circuit Rider
The Necessary Evolution of Water and Wasterwater Utilities
Craig-New Castle PSA: One Small System's Giant Leap into the Future
Poor planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on our part
Extra Highlights from 2012 VRWA Conference
Virginia Department of Transportation Work Zone Traffic Control Update
FOG (Fat, Oil and Grease): Sewer Public Enemy No.1
The Inspector Found What?
EXPO Coverage
Ergs, Joules & Such
Understanding your Job as a Board or Council Member?
Wastewater Math
Throwing My Loop
eLearning Benefits
Membership Application
Do You Know What Your VRWA Benefits Are?
VRWA Mailbag
Welcoming New Members
Training Calendar
Board Of Directors
VRWA Committees
Index to Advertisers/

Streamline - Fall 2012