Member Spotlight - Clarence Wittwer, Houston, Texas
September 26, 2018

Job title and employer: Assistant Director, City of Houston Water and WastewaterClarence Wittwer
Educational background: B.S. Environmental Science, University of Southwestern Louisiana
Job duties: Reducing sanitary sewer overflows, upgrading the City’s collection system infrastructure, and consolidating 39 wastewater treatment plants. One of the most rewarding aspects is protecting the public’s health and safety and knowing that what I do for a living quietly protects the health and wellbeing of more than 2.5 million people daily.
How did you get into the water industry? I went to work for the City of Seabrook, Texas, right out of high school as a laborer in the street department. A few months later another employee retired at the wastewater plant and I was transferred into the utilities department as a plant operator trainee.
What is one of the most interesting projects you’ve worked on? Years ago in Alvin, Texas, I managed a project from design through construction that involved converting an old surface aerator system into a modern fine bubble system using dissolved oxygen controls and high-speed turbo blowers. It was all new technology at the time and exciting to be involved in such a cool new system.
What is one of your biggest accomplishments? Seeing my investment of mentoring staff pay off as they move into key leadership roles.
How long have you been an AWWA member and in what way? I’ve been an AWWA member for nearly 20 years and involved in the Texas AWWA/WEAT Section. My favorite activity is assisting with the annual Texas Water Conference and especially Water for People events. 
 Clarence Wittwer in Shriners parade.
How have you benefited from your membership? The educational offerings and networking have been invaluable. It has been rewarding to grow an amazing network and friendships with other AWWA members. AWWA courses and publications have been key to me advancing through water and wastewater licenses over the years.
Hobbies and outside interests: During my spare time I enjoy playing the tuba in different venues, including churches and community symphonies around Houston. I also am a proud Shriner and volunteer at various Shriner’s Children’s Hospitals throughout Houston.
What is something that people would be surprised to know about you? Most people are surprised to learn that I have a degree in music and have taught piano and brass at several local middle schools.