Diversity & Inclusion Award

Diversity & Inclusion Award

2023 Recipients

Nicole Brown

Individual Award Winner: Nicole Brown (pictured)

Organizational Award Winner: Toho Water Authority

Award Criteria


Purpose of the Award: Recognize an individual, group, or organization that has created, promoted, and maintained diversity and inclusion by establishing an environment that recognizes, encourages, and effectively utilizes each individual's talents.

AWWA recognizes the role of diversity and inclusion as being essential to the growth, structure, and continued success of any organization. Diversity and inclusion should be an inherent trait of any organization and is manifest in the mosaic of people who bring a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, values, and beliefs as assets to a group or organization in which they interact. The Diversity and Inclusion Award is not given to an individual, group, or organization on the basis of who they are, but because of their achievements and accomplishments.

The Award: An exquisite sculpture that embodies the essence of accomplishment and serve as a testament to the recipient's dedication and contributions. Each Diversity and Inclusion award is accompanied by a personalized inscribed nameplate to honor and preserve the recipient's name and accomplishment.

Frequency of the Award: One award annually or as deserved at the discretion of the AWWA Diversity and Inclusion Award Committee.

Eligibility for the Award: An AWWA individual, group, or organizational member who has promoted or demonstrated excellence and leadership in most or all of the following areas:

a. Bringing a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, values and beliefs as assets to a group or organization with which they interact.

b. Establishing an environment that recognizes and encourages the effective use of each individual’s talents and other contributions to the cause of diversity.

c. Promotion and fostering of diversity programs such as mentoring, support networks, internship programs, co-op programs, work study, diversity training, or other opportunities.

d. Development of management accountability/tracking methods as means of quantifying the impact of the efforts to increase and maintain diversity.

Entry Requirements: AWWA entry form along with full name, address, and biographical information (for individuals) of each nominee, and a detailed yet concise description of how the nominee meets the eligibility criteria. Self nominations are accepted

Nomination Procedure: A nomination for the award may be submitted by any AWWA member (individual or organization) or Section to American Water Works Association, Attn:  Executive Dept., 6666 W. Quincy Avenue, Denver, CO 80235 and will be transmitted to the Diversity Award Committee for consideration.  Current nominees may be reconsidered for one year.  Updates to the nomination for reconsideration may be requested by the committee.

Nomination Deadline: November 1

Award Committee Membership: The committee shall consist of the AWWA President, the Chair of the Diversity & Member Inclusion Committee, one Board member and two non-Board members of the Diversity & Member Inclusion Committee appointed by the Chair.

Method of Selecting Award Recipient: The Diversity and Inclusion Award Committee selects a candidate from the list of nominees for the award and submits the selected nominee to the Executive Committee and Board of Directors for approval at its winter meeting.

Presentation of the Award: The award will be presented at the Opening General Session of the American Water Works Association Annual Conference and Exposition.


Past Recipients
  • Individual Award Winner: Stephen J. Welch, Contra Costa Water District
  • Organizational Award Winner: Black & Veatch
  • Individual Award Winner: Cathy Bernardino Bailey, Executive Director, Greater Cincinnati Water Works
  • Organizational Award Winner: Xylem, Inc.
  • Individual Award Winner: L'Oreal Stepney, Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
  • Organizational Award Winner: AECOM Technical Services, Inc.
  • Individual Award Winner: Don Jones, Cuyamaca College
  • Organizational Award Winner: Stantec
  • California Water Service
  • California/Nevada Section
  • Kimley-Horn and Associates Inc., Fort Worth, Texas
  • Minneapolis Water Treatment and Distribution Services Division
  • Minnesota Section
  • Dallas Water Utilities
  • Texas Section
  • Ronald K. Tamada, Texas Section
  • Las Vegas Valley Water District, CA/NV Section
  • Central Arkansas Water
  • Southwest Section
  • The Metropolitan Sewer District of Greater Cincinnati
  • City of Seattle
  • Pacific - Northwest Section
  • City of Fort Worth Water Department
  • Texas Section
2007 - 2009
No award given

  • South Central Connecticut Regional Water Authority
  • Connecticut Section
  • City of San Diego Water Authority
  • California - Nevada Section
  • Yasser M. AbouAish
  • Minnesota Section