OCWD Board of Directors

Cathy Green
First Vice President
Denis R. Bilodeau, P.E.
Second Vice President
Philip L. Anthony
Jordan Brandman
Shawn Dewane
Jan M. Flory, ESQ.
Dina L. Nguyen, ESQ.
Roman Reyna
Stephen R. Sheldon
Roger C. Yoh, P.E.
General Manager
Michael R. Markus
P.E., D.WRE.

President's Message – Preparing for 2016

Director Cathy Green's Photo
The year 2015 has been one of the most challenging on record for California's water purveyors. The state entered its fourth consecutive year of mega drought, prompting the California State Water Resources Control Board to issue water conservation mandates—the first time ever.

Each city and water district has its own conservation goal (as compared to 2013) because some had been conserving while others hadn't.

Residents and businesses in the Orange County Water District's service area rose to the occasion and surpassed the state target of 23.6 percent for our area with an actual regional reduced consumption of 26.6 percent. However, some individual cities are just shy of reaching their goals.

Groundwater reliability during this historic drought was due in part to the manner in which OCWD has been managing this local resource for more than 80 years. Read More...

Welcome New Board Member Jordan Brandman

Jordan Brandman was appointed to the Orange County Water District by the Anaheim City Council to represent the city in Division 9, replacing Councilmember Harry Sidhu after his four years of service. Director Brandman retains his title as Anaheim City Councilmember.

"This important position helps guide the District in its mission to provide reliable, high-quality water to more than 2 million people in Orange County and we welcome Director Brandman," says OCWD General Manager Mike Markus. Read More...

Alamitos Improvement Project to Strengthen Seawater Barrier

The Orange County Water District (OCWD; the District) will soon begin construction on the Alamitos Barrier Improvement Project in Seal Beach. The project will strengthen the barrier infrastructure that protects the Orange County Groundwater Basin from seawater intrusion along the Los Angeles County-Orange County line. Seventeen injection wells and three monitoring wells will be constructed along the flood control channel west of the Leisure World active senior community and east of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power's Haynes Generating Station. In addition, one deep monitoring well and two shallow monitoring wells will be constructed within Leisure World. Read More...

Improved District Website Launches

The Orange County Water District (the District; OCWD) has recently redesigned its website with a new vibrant look, simple navigation and expanded information that features technically advanced and relevant content and tools for learning and helping visitors better understand OCWD management practices and decisions.

The website will retain the same web address, www.ocwd.com, and the OCWD and Groundwater Replenishment System (GWRS) websites will no longer be stand-alone sites. The GWRS material is now contained on the new OCWD site and has a prominent presence. Read More...

Groundwater Protection Plan Update: EPA Visits OCWD

Toxic industrial chemicals impact an area in the North Basin (near Fullerton, Anaheim and Placentia) and the South Basin (near Santa Ana, Tustin and Irvine) of the Orange County Groundwater Basin that currently supplies about three-quarters of the drinking water for 2.4 million people in north and central Orange County. Legacy contaminant plumes are spreading and threaten to impact the drinking water aquifer. Five water wells have already been removed from service. The Orange County Water District, which manages the basin, is proactively seeking ways to clean up the pollution in a united effort with local and national regulatory agencies. To date, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) is taking the lead in the North Basin. The Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC) and the Regional Water Quality Control Board (RWQCB) are taking the lead in the South Basin. OCWD is presenting a monthly update to inform readers of ongoing efforts for these and other potential threats.

EPA Provides Information About North Basin Contamination Cleanup

Representatives from the United States Environmental Protection Agency speak about the North Basin contamination cleanup at the Dec. 16 OCWD board meeting.
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in its commitment to protect the public health and the environment, will be working with local agencies, businesses, communities and residents in the cities surrounding the chemical contamination in the North Basin area of the Orange County Groundwater Basin. EPA representatives spoke at the Dec. 16 Orange County Water District (the District; OCWD) board meeting. At the meeting they outlined their new regulatory oversight role in the North Basin, their reasons for considering the problem serious, and their management plan and processes going forward. The loss of three production wells and one private well in the cities of Fullerton and Anaheim was an important factor for them while considering taking a leadership role.

"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has assumed lead responsibility for the cleanup of contamination impacting the North Basin area of the Orange County Groundwater Basin, which OCWD manages. The District supports the EPA's effort and will provide assistance to the agency as needed," says OCWD Board President Cathy Green.

The EPA's actions and oversight are expected to motivate responsible parties and agencies to focus on the remedial investigation and feasibility study (RI/FS) of remediation alternatives for this important source of water to Orange County. Ensuring utilization of all of the water from a fully functional groundwater basin not only protects public health, but also ensures the long-term economic viability of all of Orange County. Read More...

Out in the Community

H2Orange County's Logo
As part of its standard to forge and maintain long-term, positive and proactive relationships with members of the local community and greater water industry and to be transparent about its operations and programs, OCWD board members and staff speak regularly before civic groups and at events. We participated in the following during November:

Greg Porto (Kiwanis Club of Newport Beach-Corona del Mar Past President), John Kennedy (OCWD Exec. Dir. of Engineering and Water Resources, Diane Pinnick (OCWD Senior Communications Specialist), and Joel Carlson (Kiwanis Club of Newport Beach-Corona del Mar President)
  • President Cathy Green was interviewed by a student from Orange Coast College who is producing a documentary about the proposed Huntington Beach Ocean Desalination Project.
  • Director Sheldon and Executive Director of Engineering and Water Resources John Kennedy gave a presentation to the Kiwanis Club of Newport Beach-Corona del Mar about OCWD and its programs and projects.
  • Director Jan Flory and John Kennedy provided an overview of OCWD, the GWRS and ocean desalination at the monthly luncheon of the North Orange County Probus.
  • Director of Public Affairs Eleanor Torres provided a presentation to the National Water Research Institute (NWRI) Independent Advisory Panel about GWRS public outreach and media activities.
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OCWD in the News

OCWD continues to be recognized for its leadership in the water industry. Below are a few of the District's recent media highlights:

OCWD Employees

OCWD's employees are its most valuable resources. It is committed to recruiting the best and enriching their lives to grow within the water industry and the District family. The District welcomes the following new employee:

Jesse Cota
Health & Safety Specialist

November Tours

Thank you to the nearly 300 hundred guests that toured OCWD's facilities in November:

Westminster High School students enjoy their GWRS tour.
This month, tours of the GWRS and/or OCWD facilities were provided to delegates from Daegu Metropolitan City, Water Works in Korea; nursing students from California State University, Long Beach (CSULB), California State University, Fullerton (CSUF), and West Coast University; civil engineering students from CSULB; members of Encina Wastewater Authority; members of Raytheon; students from Citrus College, Mt. San Antonio College, Westminster High School, and Costa Mesa High School; members of the Mojave Water Agency and Metropolitan Water District; representatives from Membrane Development Specialists; delegates from Taiwan Water Corporation and Shanghai SMI Wastewater Treatment Company (China); and members of the public tour.

Public tours of the Groundwater Replenishment System are offered at
10 a.m. on the first Friday of every month; reservations are required. Tours may be scheduled for other days of the week, depending on staff availability. To schedule a tour or to request more information, please contact Becky Mudd at (714) 378-3362 or bmudd@ocwd.com. To schedule a speaker, please contact Rose Wilke at (714) 378-3206 or rwilke@ocwd.com. You may also visit www.ocwd.com to schedule these activities online.

18700 Ward Street
Fountain Valley, CA 92708
(714) 378-3200

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