We had two questions for Kelly to answer:

1) As the operations manager of WWU, you have a lot to accomplish in week. Can you provide a broad overview of your role?

After 20 years in the private sector as a consulting engineer, the opportunity arose for me to join the Waukesha Water Utility as their Technical Services Manager…that was five years ago. Time really does fly when you are at a great place with people you enjoy working with.

As Operations Manager of the Waukesha Water Utility, I report directly to Dan Duchniak, General Manager. In one sentence, I manage the Utility Operations Department which includes the water distribution system, water supply/treatment system, metering operations, and fleet maintenance functions.

In more detail my tasks include, managing the planning, operation, and maintenance of Utility buildings, grounds, pumping/treatment equipment, lab, water storage facilities, and supervisory control systems, managing the planning, operation and maintenance of Utility water mains, valves, hydrants, laterals, meters, and meter reading equipment in compliance with Utility rules, specifications, and administrative codes, enforcing Utility work rules and safety requirements, coordinating maintenance and replacement of fleet, tools, and equipment and managing the department capital and operations budget and monitor its implementation.

In addition, as one of the Utility’s certified waterworks operators, I am responsible for compliance with regulatory requirements, ensuring compliance with regulations and standards which apply to department operations, which include, but are not limited to DNR regulations, Utility specifications, Administrative Code, and Utility policy and procedures.

2) Will you share a story of a very gratifying moment on the job?

In March of 2017, when Jeff, the Operations Manager at the time retired, I was given the opportunity to switch from engineering to operations. Since the operations staff is a great group of guys who are very dedicated to the utility and our customers, I am confident the transition was the right one for me. It may seem rather odd, but the most rewarding part of my role as operations manager so far is when a customer takes a moment to call, or email, about one of the operations staff who went above and beyond their expectations; seeing the pride in ownership in the operations staff though a customer’s eyes makes all the responsibilities work the time and effort.