On Track for Continued Success

By Eileen O'Neill 

July 29, 2013 

 

WEF’s former Executive Director Jeff Eger was committed to the development and implementation of a new strategic direction for our organization. Jeff was instrumental in ensuring that we laid the groundwork for WEF to move forward in a way that will help water professionals around the world do their most important job of protecting and sustaining the world’s water resources. It’s a job that grows more challenging every year, with burgeoning population growth, an expanding list of pollutants, and concerns related to climate change and wet weather issues.

 

WEF and its members already have defined exciting new initiatives and hit impressive milestones inspired by our new strategic direction. And, as Jeff departs, WEF is well positioned to work with the sector and its members, not just to meet clean water challenges, but to seize new opportunities through innovative practices and approaches. I am honored to be appointed Interim Executive Director, working with our talented volunteers and staff alike, to ensure that this momentum continues.

 

I first got to know WEF through our research journal when I was a graduate student in Scotland more years ago than I would care to admit. As a longtime member as well as a member of staff in various capacities for more than 20 years, I know enough about this organization to say that when goals are set, goals are met, because my colleagues are devoted to this organization, its mission, and its members. We are passionate about water and want to be part of helping water quality professionals be successful, and the strategic direction shows us how. Moreover, our Board of Trustees recently approved the 2013–2014 budget and business plan, defining priorities and initiatives to support our strategic direction.

 

Partnerships continue to be essential in working toward achieving strategic objectives such as increasing awareness of the value of water. And they are essential in driving innovation and helping to position wastewater treatment facilities as water resource recovery facilities, a more accurate reference given the critical role of utilities in sustainable water resources, renewable energy, and more. Partnerships also are crucial to enriching the expertise of water professionals; for example, WEF is working closely with the Water Environment Research Foundation (Alexandria, Va.) to implement the Leaders Innovation Forum for Technology initiative that will accelerate use of innovations in water treatment and water reclamation facilities while reducing risk and conserving resources.

 

WEFTEC® 2013 will be a showcase for many initiatives that further advance our strategic direction, and the Stormwater Congress is just one great example. This inaugural WEFTEC event will maximize networking opportunities for stormwater professionals and facilitate participation in the kind of high-quality technical program WEFTEC is known for worldwide.

 

In short, WEF has much to be proud of, and even more to look forward to. As WEF President Cordell Samuels said, “The Board joins the staff, and some 36,000 WEF members, in thanking Jeff for his leadership and commitment to clean water over the past two and a half years.”

 

On behalf of the WEF staff, we wish Jeff all the very best for the future and offer our thanks for his leadership on behalf of water quality professionals everywhere.

 07/26/2013Permanent link

On Track for Continued Success  ()
 

On Track for Continued Success By Eileen O'Neill  July 29, 2013    WEF’s former Executive Director Jeff Eger was committed to the development and implementation of a new strategic direction for our organization. Jeff was instrumental in ensuring that we

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On Track for Continued Success

 Permanent link

On Track for Continued Success

By Eileen O'Neill 

July 29, 2013 

 

WEF’s former Executive Director Jeff Eger was committed to the development and implementation of a new strategic direction for our organization. Jeff was instrumental in ensuring that we laid the groundwork for WEF to move forward in a way that will help water professionals around the world do their most important job of protecting and sustaining the world’s water resources. It’s a job that grows more challenging every year, with burgeoning population growth, an expanding list of pollutants, and concerns related to climate change and wet weather issues.

 

WEF and its members already have defined exciting new initiatives and hit impressive milestones inspired by our new strategic direction. And, as Jeff departs, WEF is well positioned to work with the sector and its members, not just to meet clean water challenges, but to seize new opportunities through innovative practices and approaches. I am honored to be appointed Interim Executive Director, working with our talented volunteers and staff alike, to ensure that this momentum continues.

 

I first got to know WEF through our research journal when I was a graduate student in Scotland more years ago than I would care to admit. As a longtime member as well as a member of staff in various capacities for more than 20 years, I know enough about this organization to say that when goals are set, goals are met, because my colleagues are devoted to this organization, its mission, and its members. We are passionate about water and want to be part of helping water quality professionals be successful, and the strategic direction shows us how. Moreover, our Board of Trustees recently approved the 2013–2014 budget and business plan, defining priorities and initiatives to support our strategic direction.

 

Partnerships continue to be essential in working toward achieving strategic objectives such as increasing awareness of the value of water. And they are essential in driving innovation and helping to position wastewater treatment facilities as water resource recovery facilities, a more accurate reference given the critical role of utilities in sustainable water resources, renewable energy, and more. Partnerships also are crucial to enriching the expertise of water professionals; for example, WEF is working closely with the Water Environment Research Foundation (Alexandria, Va.) to implement the Leaders Innovation Forum for Technology initiative that will accelerate use of innovations in water treatment and water reclamation facilities while reducing risk and conserving resources.

 

WEFTEC® 2013 will be a showcase for many initiatives that further advance our strategic direction, and the Stormwater Congress is just one great example. This inaugural WEFTEC event will maximize networking opportunities for stormwater professionals and facilitate participation in the kind of high-quality technical program WEFTEC is known for worldwide.

 

In short, WEF has much to be proud of, and even more to look forward to. As WEF President Cordell Samuels said, “The Board joins the staff, and some 36,000 WEF members, in thanking Jeff for his leadership and commitment to clean water over the past two and a half years.”

 

On behalf of the WEF staff, we wish Jeff all the very best for the future and offer our thanks for his leadership on behalf of water quality professionals everywhere.

Posted by Blaine Menelik at 07/26/2013 11:24:04 AM | 


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/uploadedImages/Blogs/Authors/Eileen O'Neill.jpgPosted by:
Eileen O'Neill, Ph.D.
Executive Director, Water Environment Federation
 

Eileen O’Neill is the Executive Director of the Water Environment Federation (WEF), an international organization of more than 36,000 water quality professionals headquartered in Alexandria, Va.

Most recently WEF's deputy executive director, Dr. O’Neill has worked with the Federation for just over 20 years in a variety of positions including with responsibility for oversight of WEF’s technical, international, and communications programs and served as the organization’s chief technical officer before becoming deputy executive director in late 2011.

Before joining WEF she worked as an academic and in environmental consulting in the US and in Europe.  She has a B.S. in Soil Science from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne (UK) and a Ph.D. in Soil Science from the University of Aberdeen (U.K.) and undertook a postdoctoral traineeship in Environmental Toxicology at the University of Wisconsin at Madison.