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Jersey Water Works Conference

December 9-11, 2020

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Jennifer Gonzalez, AICP, CFM, LEED-GA, ENV SP, is the Director of Environmental Services and Chief Sustainability Officer for the City of Hoboken, New Jersey where she oversees public works including parks, public property, waste management, and green stormwater infrastructure projects. She advances asset management, sustainability in municipal operations across multiple departments, and resiliency projects such as ResilienCity Park. She also supports emergency management, the Hoboken drinking water utility, and coordination with energy and sewer utilities. Before joining the City of Hoboken, Ms. Gonzalez was a Principal Planner with Louis Berger and Environmental Planner with the County of Passaic, New Jersey. She holds professional certifications from the American Planning Association (AICP), National Assocation of Floodplain Managers (CFM), U.S. Green Building Certification Institute (LEED-Green Associate), and New Jersey Board of Professional Planners (PP). She earned her M.A. in Environmental Policy from Lehigh University.

Andrew Kricun is a Managing Director with Moonshot Missions, a non-profit focused on providing technical assistance to water utilities in underserved communities. Prior to that, he served as Executive Director and Chief Engineer of the Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority, operators of an 80 million gallon per day wastewater treatment plant in Camden, NJ. He has 35 years of wastewater and biosolids management experience. He graduated with honors from Princeton University with a degree in chemical engineering. He also holds a professional engineer’s license in civil engineering and is a board-certified environmental engineer as well.

Andy serves on the USEPA’s National Environmental Justice Advisory Council and also New Jersey Environmental Justice Advisory Council.  He previously served on the board of the National Association of Clean Water Agencies and as the chair of its Utility of the Future committee and the Environmental Justice committee. He was the recipient of the Praxis Award for Professional Ethics, the President’s Award from the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, the One Water Prize from the US Water Alliance, and Environmental Quality Awards from the United States Environmental Protection Agency. He was also chosen as governmental engineer of the year by the NJ Chapter American Society of Civil Engineers in 2018.

He serves as co-chair for the Jersey Water Works Steering Committee.

Rosana Pedra Nobre is the Water Quality Manager at the Hudson River Foundation and the New York-New Jersey Harbor & Estuary Program, where she works with partner organizations and agencies to manage water resources and improve water quality in the Harbor Estuary. She dedicates her time towards incorporating science, data collection, and community engagement into addressing water quality challenges and uses an educational lens to communicate science. Rosana has an Ed.M. in science education and a B.S. in environmental sciences from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey.

Donald C. Shields, PE, is Vice President and Director of Engineering for New Jersey American Water, the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater to approximately 2.8 million people. Shields oversees a staff of over 50 professionals including construction managers, engineers, planners and geographic information systems (GIS) specialists. He is directly responsible for delivering New Jersey American Water’s capital investment program of more than $350 million per year. In his role, he also provides oversight to engineering activities in the other Eastern Division states, which includes New York, Virginia and Maryland.

Shields has more than 25 years of industry experience, joining American Water in 2001. Prior to his current role, he served as Engineering Director of New Business Development for American Water’s Corporate Engineering Group. While there, he supported American Water’s regulated and market-based businesses, offering technical guidance and expertise for project development and execution, including large water, wastewater and solids digestion/management/handling/energy production.  

He also spent ten years at American Water’s former subsidiary, Applied Water Management, where he managed a team of 30 construction managers and engineers. He has significant experience with designing, building and commissioning membrane bio reactors, a key technology used in water reclamation and reuse. 

Prior to joining American Water, Shields spent ten years working for Bergen County Utilities Authority in Northern New Jersey, where he worked on capital improvement projects ranging from automated meter systems and force main rehabilitation, to wastewater treatment plant upgrades.

Shields is a licensed Professional Engineer in New Jersey, and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Villanova University.

Dr. Daniel Van Abs, is a Professor of Professional Practice for Water, Society & Environment at Rutgers University, School of Environmental and Biological Sciences. He has 42 years of experience in water resources and environmental management with Rutgers, the Highlands Council, NJ Water Supply Authority, NJ Department of Environmental Protection and the Passaic River Coalition.  He is a member of Jersey Water Works Asset Management and Finance Committee and Jersey WaterCheck’s Data Advisory Committee. He holds a Ph.D. in Environmental Science from SUNY-College of Environmental Science and Forestry, is a licensed Professional Planner in New Jersey and a Fellow of the American Institute of Certified Planners. See www.danvanabs.com for more details.

David Zimmer serves as the Executive Director of the New Jersey Infrastructure Bank, the State’s construction financing Authority which partners with the NJDEP and the NJDOT to provide low interest rate loans to government units and authorities for environmental and local transportation infrastructure projects respectively.

During his tenure, Mr. Zimmer has focused on introducing several new successful loan programs to broaden the reach and depth of financing program options and worked to overhaul the I-Bank’s credit policy to bring transparency and clarity to borrowers.  He has also improved the efficiency and effectiveness of the I-Bank by overseeing the development of two modern, web-based loan management systems that have greatly reduced paper work and minimized time and administrative costs for project sponsors.

Mr. Zimmer is a Chartered Financial Analyst and holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration with a concentration in finance from the University of Notre Dame and a Bachelor of Civil Engineering degree from the University of Dayton.

For more information on the NJ I-Bank, please visit: www.njib.gov.

Mr. Adeem, a Newark native, began working for the City of Newark in 1991 in the Department of Engineering. In 2013, Adeem was promoted to superintendent of public works, where he oversaw daily maintenance operations of the Department of Water and Sewer Utilities. In 2018, he received his certification as a Public Works Manager and was appointed to his present position. He was a key player in various municipal projects, including the Queen Ditch Restoration Project, which helped address chronic flooding along Frelinghuysen Avenue that has plagued the area for more than 30 years. Director Adeem is credited with helping to rebrand the Department of Water and Sewer Utilities and upgrading the city’s infrastructure as it works to replace every lead service line. He is a dedicated public servant who has, and continues to, give back to his native community.

Mami Hara is the CEO of the US Water Alliance, a national nonprofit organization advancing policies and programs that build a sustainable water future for all. 

The US Water Alliance brings together diverse stakeholders to identify and advance common-ground, achievable solutions to our nation’s most pressing water challenges. Water utilities, public officials, business leaders, agricultural interests, environmental organizations, community leaders, unions, and policy organizations comprise the diverse membership of the US Water Alliance. The Alliance educates the nation on the true value of water, accelerates the adoption of One Water policies and programs, and celebrates innovation in water management. The Alliance also manages the Value of Water Campaign, a coalition of leading water sector organizations that are building public and political will for investment in water infrastructure.

Mami brings over three decades of experience in land and water management, advancing sustainable practices through cultivating leaders and partnerships, workforce development, inclusive community participation, science-based decisions and planning, and knowledge sharing. In her public sector and private practice roles, Mami has guided the planning and implementation of award-winning green infrastructure, sustainability, economic development, and waterfront programs across the United States. 

Prior to serving at the Alliance, Mami was the general manager and CEO of Seattle Public Utilities, which provides solid waste, drainage, and wastewater services for Seattle residents and businesses, as well as drinking water for 1.3 million regional customers in 27 municipalities. Mami also served as first deputy commissioner of Philadelphia Water, where she helped shepherd the groundbreaking green infrastructure program, Green Cities, Clean Waters. Additionally, Mami worked as a principal with Wallace Roberts & Todd, LLC, leading seminal projects such as GreenPlan Philadelphia, and developing environmental justice-centered, open space, and infrastructure plans for underserved communities in the northeastern United States. Mami co-founded a peer-to-peer network for cities and utilities advancing green infrastructure programs to promote research, innovation, and implementation of green infrastructure, and she has been an advisor to several environmental, philanthropic, planning, and design advocacy organizations. Mami taught at PennDesign, Temple School of Architecture, and the Department of Urban Studies and Planning at MIT, and she holds degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and Harvard University.

Alyssa is the Program Manager of PowerCorps Camden. Her journey of service began 5 years ago when she came from New York City to be an AmeriCorps VISTA in Camden where she got the opportunity to manage a literacy program. From there, Alyssa grew a deep love and passion for the Camden community and quickly realized she could learn from anyone, particularly through their own stories and narratives. Camden became a home for her, where she could continue to learn and grow as a professional, taking the chance to engage with the community whenever she could either through her current role as the Program Director for PowerCorps or volunteering at community events.

Wynnie-Fred Victor Hinds, was appointed, by the Mayor of Newark, NJ and the Municipal City Council, to the Board of the Newark Environmental Commission in October 2015 and currently serves as Co-Chair. She is the Executive Director of Stepping Stones Resources. She’s a former Board Trustee with the N.J. Highlands Coalition. In addition, she’s a current Board Member of N.J. Clean Water Action and National Clean Water Action. She is on the leadership team of the Newark Water Group, a grassroots think tank and advocacy organization that advocates for better oversight of Newark’s Watershed, located in the Highlands and its Water and Sewer System. She is currently one of three candidates nominated by Governor Murphy for appointment to the New Jersey Highlands Council. She is on the Data Advisory Committee of Jersey Water Works’ new data dashboard Jersey WaterCheck. She is fluent in Spanish, French, and Haitian Creole. She has a B.A. in Economic/Management & Administration and M.S. in International Relations.

Gina Sullivan focuses on Business Development for the Engineers Labor Employer Cooperative, the Labor Management Fund of Operating Engineers Local 825 and works closely with the signatory contractors who employ their members. She advocates for policies that drive economic development, workforce development, and improve our infrastructure, concentrating on our state’s crumbling water systems. Gina previously worked as Policy Director for Assemblyman Conaway of the 7th Legislative District, where she focused on the environmental and health impacts of lead in New Jersey’s drinking water and water infrastructure. Gina holds a Bachelor’s as well as a Master’s Degree in Labor and Employment Relations from Rutgers University.

Randall Solomon is the Director of The Sustainability Institute at The College of New Jersey and the Executive Director of Sustainable Jersey. He has over 25 years of experience working in government, academia, and the nonprofit sector. He is one of the principals that founded and directs the Sustainable Jersey Certification program. Prior to his current position he was the founder and Executive Director of the New Jersey Sustainable State Institute at Rutgers where he worked to expand the capacity of public decision making to address sustainability. Mr. Solomon’s experience includes positions as a policy advisor on sustainable development for the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities integrating land use and energy policy, director of the States Campaign for the Resource Renewal Institute in San Francisco, and policy director for the non-profit New Jersey Future. Other jobs include a stint as a national Park Ranger and serving in the inaugural class of AmeriCorps volunteers. He has participated on advisory boards for federal and state government, civic organizations, and has advised major corporations. He writes and speaks frequently on sustainable development, energy, land use policy, using indicators in public decision making, and governance issues. Randy holds a B.S. in Biology from Rutgers University and a M.S. in Public Policy from Rutgers University.

Jahtieh Postell is a Crew Leader at PowerCorps Camden. His journey with PowerCorps started at the young age of 18 when he was a member of PowerCorps Philadelphia, he worked his way up the ranks of the program learning everything he could about Green Infrastructure. Jahtieh then moved on to a staff position at PowerCorps Camden, being the first former member to come on in a full-time staff role. Jahtieh is extremely knowledgeable on the world of green infrastructure and an example of someone who worked towards the goal of obtaining a job in the green world.

U.S. Representative Donald M. Payne, Jr. is a Democratic congressman from Newark, New Jersey. He has represented New Jersey’s 10th Congressional District, which covers portions of Essex, Hudson, and Union counties, since 2012. Rep. Payne, Jr. is a tireless fighter for New Jersey families and works to create jobs, grow the economy, protect children, promote education, and ensure the health and safety of our communities. As Chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Recovery, he introduced two bills that became the law under President Barack Obama to improve the safety and security of our country. In 2017, Rep. Payne, Jr. was appointed to the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. He also sponsored the TEST for Lead Act to protect them from lead-contaminated drinking water in schools.

Kendra F. Morris, Director of Business Development for SUEZ North America, partners with municipal leaders to bring sustainable and smart water solutions to communities across the U.S. and Canada. At SUEZ, she leads teams to develop and execute commercial strategy for long-term contract operations. Kendra has a background in infrastructure investment and is passionate about environmental protection, water quality and resilient public infrastructure. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Political Science and a Master of City Planning both from the University of Pennsylvania.

Mark Mauriello began his career with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) in May 1980. He was appointed as land use regulation director in 2002 and assistant commissioner in 2006, and in November 2008 he became NJDEP commissioner, replacing newly confirmed U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson. Upon his retirement from NJDEP in January 2010, he formed his own consulting firm, specializing in coastal zone management, floodplain management, land use regulation, and regulatory compliance. He then accepted a position as director of environmental affairs and planning with Edgewood Properties, where he is responsible for overseeing the company’s environmental programs and serving as an advisor on regulatory issues and property acquisitions.

Debbie was most recently the Deputy Commissioner at the NJ Department of Environmental Protection. While there Debbie provided leadership and direction for many of the DEP’s climate change, renewable energy, and environmental justice efforts. Previously, Debbie served as Baykeeper of the NY/NJ Baykeeper and as an environmental and energy policy adviser to former Gov. Jon S. Corzine. She is the former chair of the New Jersey League of Conservation Voters, former trustee of New Jersey Future, and currently serves as member of the Borough Council in Glen Ridge. Debbie has a certification from the International Association for Public Participation in Foundations in Public Participation.

Jane Kenny is founder and managing partner of The Whitman Strategy Group, an all-women firm specializing in environmental and energy issues and government relations. Previously, she served as a regional administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Ms. Kenny has been a top advisor to three governors of New Jersey and served as New Jersey’s commissioner for the Department of Community Affairs. She serves on the board of directors for New Jersey Resources. She is a trustee for New Jersey Future and a visiting associate at the Eagleton Institute at Rutgers University.

Charlotte Katzenmoyer graduated from the University of Akron with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering and graduated from Lehigh University with a Master of Science in Environmental Engineering. She has over 20 years of experience in the water industry and is the CEO for Capital Region Water providing wastewater, drinking water and stormwater services to the City of Harrisburg and portions of five surrounding municipalities. Before her current role, she served as the Director of Public Works with the City of Lancaster. While in Lancaster, she oversaw the modernization of its water and sewer infrastructure and developed a nationally recognized green stormwater infrastructure program.

Megan Glover is the Co-founder and CEO of 120Water. A data and software veteran, prior to founding 120Water she spent nearly 15 years as an executive building and scaling various software as a service product in the Midwest. With a passion and knowledge base for utilizing modern software technology to solve problems, 120Water provides modern software and tools necessary to solve our most complex drinking water challenges.

Marian Glenn completed the Green Infrastructure Champion program offered by Rutgers Cooperative Extension Water Resources Program. She applied what she learned at this training as a member of the City of Summit Environmental Commission and the Rahway River Watershed Association. In addition to promoting rain gardens, she has led three floodplain reforestation projects through Sustainable Jersey’s Roots for Rivers program.

Shadi Eskaf joined the Environmental Finance Center at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in 2004 and has worked on environmental finance projects in local, state, and national settings. Shadi works on a range of topics, including water and wastewater rates and rate-setting, financial performance and assessment, water consumption, infrastructure capital needs and funding, and utility partnerships. Shadi has a Master’s Degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Anthony Diaz is a Newark native and a co-founder of the Newark Water Coalition, an organization dedicated to raising awareness about the city’s lead water crisis and urging local officials to act. Through the Newark Water Coalition, Diaz attends city council meetings, hosts water filter giveaways and water distributions for residents, and hosts various teach-ins at multiple universities in New Jersey. The organization has been able to provide over 1,000 filters and over 70,000 gallons of water to the people of Newark. He has been actively involved in activism since starting his high school’s first student union. He is a steadfast believer that people’s power and the recognition of how all struggles are interconnected are the keys to achieving equity.

Councilwoman Ruby Cotton has received numerous awards and recognition including being named Volunteer of the Year by Senator John Girgenti’s Civic League, being hailed as “Unsung Hero” by the Passaic County African American Inc. and receiving the Florence Letcher Tom Community Service Award from Delta Theta Sorority Inc., Paterson Alumnae Chapter. She was elected Councilperson of the 4th Ward in Paterson during the 2012 municipal election. As a member of the City Council, she has served as the Chairperson for the Public Safety, Public Works, Street Naming, and Municipal Services/Statutory Agencies Committees. On July 31, 2015, Ruby retired from the Passaic Valley Sewerage Commission after working there for 22 years.

Stephanie is proud to lead two mission-driven organizations she co-founded; she serves as CEO for Rogue Water, LLC and Co-Executive Director for the nonprofit, Rogue Water Lab. She believes water is the catalyst for community transformation and that communication is at the core. With a decade of experience working for municipal water utilities, she seeks to empower water professionals with the power of comms to drive the impact required to design resilient water futures. Stephanie is one half of the H2duO, and you can find her co-hosting the Water in Real Life podcast and the Catalyst Mastermind Summit through Rogue Water Lab, which provides the water industry with resources designed to cultivate innovators in communication and public education.

Bill Cesanek, AICP, is a Vice President and practice leader for environmental and infrastructure planning at CDM Smith. With more than 30 years of experience, he works to advance interdisciplinary approaches to urban and infrastructure planning, including support for green infrastructure and source water protection initiatives in Philadelphia, and regional climate resilience projects. He chaired the American Planning Association’s Water Task Force from 2014 to 2017, and now Chairs the APA Water and Planning Network. He has been an adjunct professor in the Rutgers Bloustein Graduate School of Planning & Public Policy since 2012. Bill authored the Planning Advisory Service report “Planners and Water”, published in August 2017 by APA.

Isabella holds a joint position with the Pinelands Preservation Alliance and the Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions. She works on the South Jersey Landscape Makeover Program, which works with municipalities and homeowners to build green stormwater infrastructure projects and reduce non-point source pollution and flooding. Outside of work, she is working on a Master of Environmental Studies at the University of Pennsylvania.

Stephen Blankenship is the Executive Director/Chief Engineer for Hamilton Township MUA in Mays Landing, NJ, and an active member of the New Jersey Section of AWWA (AWWA NJ), the NJ Water Environment Association (NJWEA), the Association of Environmental Authorities of New Jersey (AEA) and the South Jersey Water Professionals Association (SJWPA) and JWW’s Asset Management Committee. Stephen has about 30 years of experience working for and with water and wastewater utilities. Stephen holds a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Rutgers University, professional engineering licenses in three states, a Certified Municipal Engineer certification and all 5 NJDEP operator licenses.

A native of Newark, Mayor Baraka’s progressive approach to governing has won him accolades from grassroots organizations to the White House under President Obama’s administration. With a forward-thinking agenda that reduced crime to its lowest levels in five decades, addressed affordability while maintaining steady growth, lowered unemployment, and returned local control of schools after more than two decades, Baraka has defied expectations since taking office in 2014. During this historic time, he is currently fighting for a myriad of social justice reforms while leading his city through the fight against COVID.

Kati Angarone has worked at the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) for more than 20 years and currently serves at the Associate Commissioner for Science and Policy. In this role she ensures policy cohesion across the Department in furtherance of the Department priorities (e.g., Climate, Water and Public Health). She also oversees the Division of Science & Research who provides scientific support to all programs of the Department. In addition, her office includes the Offices of Environmental Public Health & Safety and the Office of Economic Analysis, which work closely with the Department of Health on environmental public health issues and provide support for economic analyses performed during policy development, respectively.

Prior to assuming the role of Associate Commissioner, Kati spent many years assisting with the development of New Jersey DEP’s land use policies including stormwater management, habitat protection, flood hazard area controls and protection of the Highlands region. More recently she focused on drinking water policy, including the adoption of new maximum contaminant levels, management of harmful algal blooms and emergency response. Kati continues to work to develop policy that is protective of New Jersey’s environment and public health.

Dr. Jalonne L. White-Newsome is a senior program officer at The Kresge Foundation, responsible for the Environment Program’s grant portfolio on Climate Resilient and Equitable Water Systems (CREWS) and serves as a member of Kresge’s Operationalizing Racial Equity team. A native of Detroit, Jalonne earned a Ph.D. in environmental health sciences from the University of Michigan School of Public Health, a master’s degree in environmental engineering from Southern Methodist University and a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Northwestern University.

Jalonne has worked across many sectors. Before joining Kresge in 2016, Jalonne served as director of federal policy at West Harlem Environmental Action Inc. (WE ACT), where she led national campaigns to ensure that the concerns of low-income communities of color were integrated into federal policy. She is also an adjunct professor at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. As a researcher on climate, health, and equity, Jalonne was a lead author for the human health chapter of the Fourth National Climate Assessment. She provides leadership on various boards, including the National Academy of Sciences Board on Environmental Change and Society, an Associate Editor of the Environmental Justice Journal, and co-chair of Health Environmental Funder’s Network Steering Committee.

Jalonne has recently been recognized by Who’s Who in America, The Environmental Management Association’s Environmental Achievement Award, the Michigan League of Conservation Voters and is a 2017 PLACES Fellow alum with The Funders Network.

When she is not working, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two daughter’s Arielle and Jeannelyn.

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