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AWWA and the Partnership's partner organizations offer timely, relevant and in-depth knowledge and information about the optimization of drinking water treatment plants and distribution systems. Visit this page regularly to access valuable news, media releases, features and insights that help utilities improve operations and performance.

Winter 2017 

Letter from Partnership Staff

 “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” – Peter Drucker

As 2017 draws to a close, Partnership programs are thriving.  As a result of the vision and action of engaged volunteers, subscribers, and staff, a future has been created for Partnership programs that bring the Partnership’s optimization benefits to a growing number of utilities, worldwide.  

The Partnership continues to pursue new frontiers in optimization.  Volunteers are actively developing a corrosion control application document for treatment plants, to complement existing distribution system guidance.  A program is also being developed to meet the specific needs of small systems, funded, in part, by a grant from USDA.  Watch for this exciting program to be launched in 2017.  I think the founding partners would be pleased with the work underway “for utilities, by utilities” to provide resources that help utilities improve water quality and protect public health.

Partnership staff shares Holiday cheer at AWWA.

Access the full letter to learn more about how Partnership programs encourage teamwork among utility staff and program volunteers, alike.


News, Features & Media Releases

Read about recent news and happenings from the Partnership, and access the full archive of articles below:


DENVER, CO – January 25, 2018 – The Orange Water and Sewer Authority (OWASA) in North Carolina recently received the prestigious Presidents Award for Distribution System Operation from the Partnership for Safe Water. OWASA is only the third utility in the United States, to date, to achieve this award. The Partnership is a...

Over the past several years, the Partnership for Safe Water has continued to support the water sector with programs that focus on optimizing operations and performance at drinking water utilities.  This has resulted in a growing number of drinking water utilities able to benefit from Partnership for Safe Water program participation.  Access the Winter 2017 letter from Partnership for Safe Water Steering Committee Chair, Mike Barsotti of Champlain Water District (VT), to learn more about exciting new plans to help the Partnership better meet the unique needs of small drinking water systems.
Treatment in the winter, especially for a plant treating high-quality surface water, can almost seem like the plant can be switched to "auto-pilot".  Colder water temperatures mean lower levels of organics and more consistent raw water quality - the plant just cruises.  Therein lies the risk - complacency.  Read the Winter 2017 letter from Partnership for Safe Water PEAC-Treatment Chair, Kevin Linder from Aurora Water, to learn more about steps that can be taken to present complacency and help ensure the production of high-quality water.
In 2017, the Partnership for Safe Water’s Distribution System Optimization Program received a great amount of interest and attention from utilities across North America. Interest about the program may be related to a series of factors - including a desire to better manage underground assets and pipelines, to identify factors influencing main break occurrence, to better understand pressure fluctuations so that they may be addressed appropriately, or to evaluate distribution system water quality data relative to Partnership or utility-specific optimization goals.  Access this article to learn more about the program's benefits - and to find out more about updates to the distribution system self-assessment guidance, due to be released in early 2018!
This summer, Partnership for Safe Water staff and subscribers were fortunate to benefit from the contributions of summer intern, Catherine Bacon.  Catherine served AWWA this summer as a Water Data Specialist, where she supported the Partnership for Safe Water, Partnership for Clean Water, and AWWA's Buried No Longer tool.  As an August 2017 Environmental Engineering graduate from the University of Colorado, Boulder, interning for AWWA provided her with the opportunity to apply her educational background to real world projects in the water and wastewater industry.  Access this article to read about Catherine's experiences at AWWA this summer, as described in her own words.
A positive aspect of a utility's Partnership for Safe Water subscription is the valuable press and media exposure that Partnership programs receive. By extension, participating utilities also receive favorable press for their affiliation with the Partnership and for their efforts in protecting public health and optimizing drinking water utility operations and performance. Access the full article to learn about the Partnership's unique PR initiatives.
Since 2004, AWWA has been conducting an annual State of the Water Industry Survey (SOTWI) to identify key water industry challenges, critical concerns and emergency opportunities.  The information collected through this survey helps AWWA better understand the most important issues impacting the water sector and support utilities by providing relevant resources to help address these challenges.  Partnership for Safe Water Utilities are encouraged to consider completing this survey to ensure their voice is heard and to help contribute to this critical compendium of water sector knowledge.


Learn about Partnership for Safe Water awards and congratulate the Partnership's newest award recipients!

Utilities receiving new awards from May to December 2017 are listed below.  For a full list of award winners, including longevity awards presented at ACE17, visit the Partnership Awards page.

Presidents Award – Treatment
Reading Area Water Authority, PA
Maidencreek Filter Plant

Municipal Authority of the Township of Robinson, PA
Groveton Water Treatment Plant

Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, MD
Potomac Water Treatment Plant

Presidents Award – Distribution
Orange Water and Sewer Authority, Carrboro, NC

Directors Award - Treatment
Aqua Pennsylvania, Inc.
Ridley Creek Water Treatment Plant

Contra Costa Water District, CA
Brentwood Water Treatment Plant

Denver Water, CO
Marston Water Treatment Plant

Elizabethtown Area Water Authority, PA
West High Street Plant

City of Longmont, CO 
Nelson-Flanders Water Treatment Plant

Directors Award - Distribution
American Water Military Services - Fort Polk, LA

City of Raleigh Public Utilities, NC  

D.C. Water, Washington D.C.


Welcome to the recent new & returning Partnership for Safe Water utility subscribers:

California American Water - Monterrey District (Groundwater Treatment)
Coastside County Water District (Treatment)

City of Glenwood Springs (Treatment & Distribution)

American Water: Accoma Aqua/ Tampa Bay Desalination Facility

WaterOne (Distribution) 

Easton Utilities (Distribution)

City of St. Cloud (Treatment)

North Carolina
City of Durham Department of Water Management (Treatment)

Avon Lake Regional Water (Treatment)

Shamokin Dam Borough Water Treatment Plant (Distribution) 

South Carolina
Easley Combined Utilities (Distribution)
Joint Municipal Water & Sewer Commission - Lexington (Distribution)

South Dakota
City of Yankton (Treatment)

City of Kingsport Water Services (Distribution)

Trinity River Authority - Tarrant County Water Supply Project (Treatment) 

City of Lander (Treatment)

Veolia Water Canada (Treatment)


Visit the Partnership's resources page (or the links below) for case studies, tech-tips, webinars, the Getting Optimized series, newsletter archives and more:

partnership resources

April 2017 Tech-Tip:
Springtime Prompts Review of Treatment Plant Operations
April's Tech-Tip discusses common water treatment plant operational activities that can help treatment plant operators be prepared for seasonal changes and maintain water quality throughout the year.

Filter profiles are a helpful tool for the assessment of individual filter performance.  Created by graphing turbidity at regular, frequent intervals over the course of a filter run, regularly creating and reviewing filter profiles can help operators evaluate and understand filter performance.  Visit the Partnership Resources page to view an informative video, describing how to create filter profiles using simple software tools.    

April 2017 News (above)
Newsletter Archive

Plus, a wealth of additional information is available on the resources page - learn about:
AWWA Journal
AWWA Opflow - Getting Optimized Series
AWWA Events Calendar
AWWA Store
Partnership Contacts


AWWA Events Calendar

Sustainable Water Management - An Introduction (online)
September 01, 2017 / Milwaukee, WI

Pond Design, Management and Maintenance
April 20, 2018 / Hillsborough, NJ

Texas Section Annual Conference
April 22, 2018 / San Antonio, TX

Search All Events

Partnership Contacts

Michael Barsotti
Partnership Steering Committee Chair
Tel: 802.864.7454 Ext. 102

Kevin Linder
Partnership  PEAC-Treatment Chair 
Tel: 720.859.4701

Brian Haws
Partnership  PEAC-Distribution Chair 
Tel: 512.972.0158
Partnership for Safe Water/AWWA
6666 West Quincy Ave.
Denver, CO  80235-3098

Barb Martin

Partnership Program Sr. Manager
Tel: 303.347.6220

Tom Schippert
Partnership Program Sr. Coordinator
Tel: 303.347.6169


Send us an email and we'll add you to the distribution list to receive a quarterly email wrap-up of Partnership News.


Call us at: 303.347.6169

Fax us at: 303.794.6303


The Partnership for Safe Water is an alliance of six drinking water organizations:

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Utilities subscribe to the Partnership for Safe Water to ensure delivery of safe, high quality water.

Partnership awards promote system excellence with the public and regulators; and materials let utilities create connections with the media and officials to share their outstanding achievements.

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