Sept. 26, 2019
By Brandon Anderegg
Waukesha— The Waukesha Water Utility received the Gimmicks and Gadgets Award while a water utility staff member received the George Warren Fuller Award from the Wisconsin section of the American Water Works Association.
The water utility was the recipient of the Gimmicks and Gadgets Award for engineering a “pipe loop apparatus,” which allowed staff to test how the chemistry of water would impact Waukesha Water Utility infrastructure.
Water Utility General Manager Dan Duchniak said the apparatus was instrumental in testing how Lake Michigan water would impact Waukesha’s water distribution systems as Waukesha transitions to a new source for water. Duchniak added that engineers developed the apparatus inhouse, which led to substantial savings for water ratepayers, he said.
“The really cool part about this is that our guys took it upon themselves to build that apparatus,” Duchniak said. “Not only saving ratepayers money but taking ownership of that apparatus to make it a safe transition for our customers.”
Water Utility Operations Manager Kelly Zylstra received the George Warren Fuller Award for “her distinguished service to the water supply field in commemoration of the sound engineering skills, the brilliant diplomatic talent and the constructive leadership which characterized the life of George Warren Fuller,” according to the American Water Works Association’s website.
Duchniak said the Fuller Award is the highest level of recognition that can be achieved at the state level through the American Water Works Association, adding that Waukesha Water Utility is fortunate to have Zylstra as manager of operations.
“It’s an honor and privilege to be working with someone of that caliber here and we are thrilled that she is receiving the award and really proud of her accomplishment,” Duchniak said.