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Board of Directors

Executive Committee

President Jim Bell is Executive Vice President of Bio-Microbics, holds an M.S. in Sanitary Engineering from the University of Missouri and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Kansas, and a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of Missouri in Rolla, Missouri.  Mr. Bell has worked for 35 years as a Process Engineer for Smith & Loveless, Inc. designing wastewater treatment systems. In 2008, he joined Bio-Microbics as Executive Vice-President to provide process engineering and regulatory expertise. Mr. Bell is currently Vice-Chairman of the Joint Committee on Wastewater for the NSF, which develops the NSF standards for small onsite wastewater treatment systems. As an active member of the Small Community Committee for WEF (Water Environment Federation) and NOWRA (National On-Site Wastewater Recycling Association), he continues to pioneer the future of the onsite wastewater industry. As Chairman of the Captains of Industry (COI) - an affiliate organization of the State Onsite Regulators Alliance (SORA) and SORA member, Mr. Bell assists the promotion of States’ onsite solutions.Term expires December 1, 2016.

President-Elect, Vice President, Carl Thompson has been working in the onsite industry for 17 years at Infiltrator Water Technologies. Infiltrator is the manufacturer of onsite products including drainfields, tanks, risers, controls, and remediation devices. While at Infiltrator he has held technical, regulatory, marketing, and sales roles and currently serves as Vice President for Sales and Marketing. . Prior to joining Infiltrator he spent 9 years with a large manufacturer of site construction products. He has completed masters degrees in engineering and business and have been a licensed professional engineer (civil) for more than 20 years. In his role on the NOWRA Board, he wants to assist all commercial NOWRA members to grow their businesses through an effort to increase the overall market size on the onsite/decentralized industry. He believes that effort will be best accomplished through lobbying at the federal level to develop legislation or policies that will appropriately and favorably position the onsite industry for growth.

Secretary-Treasurer, Curtis Moore was elected in the Installer category and currently serves as NOWRA’s Secretary/Treasurer. He is a native of Virginia where he has worked in the onsite industry for over 25 years.  He is licensed as both a Professional Soil Scientist and Alternative Onsite Soil Evaluator in Virginia.  Curtis is the co-founder and managing partner of M&M Soil Consultants, Inc., a design and consulting firm specializing in onsite wastewater systems.  He is also a founding partner and principle of Ecoseptix Alliance which provides operation and maintenance services to onsite wastewater systems.  Curtis graduated from Virginia Tech in 1991 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agronomy, Soil Science concentration.  , Curtis has served on numerous professional boards, including.  President of the Virginia Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association, President of the Virginia Association of Professional Soil Scientists, and gubernatorial appointee to Virginia’s Chesapeake Bay TMDL Watershed Implementation Plan Stakeholder Advisory Group.  Currently, Curtis serves as a Board Member and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman for VOWRA and is an appointee to the Virginia Department of Health’s Sewage Handling and Disposal Advisory Committee. He is interested in helping NOWRA continue its efforts to become indispensable to both the state affiliate organizations as well as the individual practitioners that constitute the bulk of our membership. Curtis thinks the most critical issue to NOWRA members is a lack of consistency across our industry. Inconsistency creates different problems for different industry sectors. For example, manufacturers may be allowed to sell products in some states and not in others; installers and designers deal daily with regulatory requirements that change radically from locality to locality.

Past President, Gregory D. Graves, has been the General Manager for NORWECO, Inc., a manufacturer of water and wastewater treatment systems and chemicals for the last 12 years. His background is in Finance, Corporate Accounting and Operations Management. He worked in the Financial Services industry for Shearson/Lehman Brothers and KeyCorp before joining Norweco in 1996 as Controller. Active in the onsite industry, Greg is the Treasurer for American Decentralized Wastewater Association (ADWA) and os an active member of the NSF Industry Forum. He has served on the State of Ohio Department of Health Ad Hoc Committee for Rule Revision and participated in the rule writing process in Huron County. One important issue Greg would like to address during his term is membership retention and expansion, relying on the Board of Directors listening to the membership and taking action. Another critical issue for NOWRA is the increasingly important role that decentralized technologies play in our world. NOWRA has done a very good job in building awareness within the regulatory and design communities. NOWRA needs to continue to push for performance-based standards and uniform technology transfer to further increase awareness within the larger water and wastewater treatment industry.

Board of Directors

John R. Buchanan, Ph.D., P. E., is currently an Associate Professor of Biosystems Engineering in the Department of Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science at the University of Tennessee, and has been a faculty member since 2000. Prior to that, he served as a Research Associate in the Water Quality group within this same department.  His experience has largely been focused in two area, wastewater and stormwater.  Since the goal in both cases is to prevent water pollution, he feels that stormwater and wastewater are complimentary research and education topics.  From the perspective of domestic wastewater, he has researched low pressure distribution systems in very shallow soils, the use of drip irrigation for effluent dispersal, and the ability of various fixed-film systems to provide BOD and nitrogen reduction.  Since 2002, he has been active with the Consortium of Institutes for Decentralized Wastewater Treatment (CIDWT), and currently serves as the Chairman of the Executive Board for the CIDWT. Buchanan feels the onsite wastewater industry has failed to encourage new University faculty members to enter this field of study, and he would like to see more young scientists provided with the funding to conduct research and a venue to demonstrate scholarship. Term expires December 2017.

Edward Corriveau recently (2013) retired from his position as the Wastewater Planning and Finance Manager with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in the Department of Environmental Resources (DEP) in its South-central region. He had full responsibility for implementing the wastewater planning, project, funding, and program requirements of large, distributed or decentralized on-site and discharge systems within fifteen counties in South-central Pennsylvania. He has been working on onsite wastewater issues for the DEP since 1990, and his overall career with DEP extends back to 1974, virtually all of it in water and wastewater. Ed was a founding and charter member of NOWRA’s Pensylvania state affiliate, POWRA, and previously served on the NOWRA Board from 2008-2011. He has also been very active in the State Onsite Regulators Alliance since 1999, serving as chair of the Strategic Planning Committee. He has also written or been a contributor for several publications relating to onsite wastewater management and policy. Ed hopes to make a contribution in two areas. "First, I want to help support NOWRA’s efforts to advocate for greater funding for onsite wastewater treatment and to expand its use. I authored a white paper for SORA on the need for increased funding..... I would also like to help expand NOWRA’s and our industry’s opportunities within the public health and environmental protection regulatory sectors. Developing educational and outreach opportunities for both sectors so each can better understand the common opportunities we all have in a holistic watershed world is one specific area I will contribute. These opportunities include more managed on-site infrastructures, including performance based approaches, along with better and more integrated planning for more cost-effective opportunities in a friendlier watershed and sustainable water infrastructure." Term expires December 2018

K.R. "Trapper" Davis refers to himself as a “reformed” regulator.  He left the Virginia Department of Health where he worked as an Environmental Health Specialist Senior, specializing in the Onsite Environmental Health field. He formed Coastal Plains Environmental Group, LLC in August 2000 with the intent of providing management, operation and maintenance for small flow onsite wastewater treatment systems. The company currently services over 1500 single family residential advanced treatment systems in 33 counties of Virginia.    He was appointed by Virginia’s Governor Kaine to the Board for Waterworks, Wastewater Works Operators and Onsite Sewage System Professionals, where he has helped write the rules for licensure for onsite system evaluators, installers and operators.  He was re-appointed to the WWWOOSSP Board by Governor McDonald and was the Chairman of the licensing board through 2014.  He is a past Board member of the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association, and has recently been re-appointed to the Board of Directors of the Virginia Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association and is a member of the steering committee for the Virginia Center for Onsite Wastewater Training. Trapper was an industry reviewer of the Consortium of Institutes for Decentralized Wastewater Training (CIDWT) Operation and Maintenance Program and has trained service providers using this program in seven different states.  Trapper is carried as an “Adjunct Instructor” for the South East Virginia Community College (SVCC) for their wastewater training program(s) at Fort Pickett, Blackstone, Virginia. His term expires December 2019.

Karen Ferguson represents the vendor/manufacturer sector. Karen has been in the onsite wastewater industry since 1990 when she cofounded Geoflow with Rodney Ruskin and Alvaarao Sanjines, following the registration of its ROOTGUARD® technology by EPA. She currently serves as the company’s president, overseeing operation and sales activities. Geoflow‘s mission is to provide products, technology and know–how that will enable the agriculture, landscape and wastewater industries to use sound irrigation and dispersal practices that preserve the quality and quantity of valuable water resources. Karen earned an MBA from the University of San Francisco in 1990. She is interested in helping to ensure that NOWRA’s technical practices remain focused on activities which support the science and practice of onsite wastewater treatment, and that its educational activities provide a credible, unbiased platform for disseminating information about practices and policies. She would also like to work with the rest of the board in helping to better address the challenges faced by Western states due to the extended drought conditions, such as greywater reuse. Karen believes that it’s important that NOWRA bring as many state onsite organizations as possible into the association and to encourage the establishment of onsite associations in those states which currently don’t have any representation.She also wants the association to remain focused on its lobbying and advocacy efforts. If the industry is to continue to grow, more favorable policies regarding funding, research and development, training, management and oversight need to be developed and promoted at the federal and state levels. Term expires December 2018.

  Dr. Sara Heger is an engineer, researcher and instructor in the Onsite Sewage Treatment Program in the Water Resources Center and is an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering Department. For over 18 years, she has been providing education and technical assistance to homeowners, small communities, onsite professionals and local units of government regarding onsite wastewater treatment.  Sara coordinates the research program at the UMN and is currently, serving as the principle investigator on grants to create online owner’s guides and evaluate rest stops served by septic systems.  She presents at many local and national training events regarding the design, installation and management of septic systems and related research. Sara is Education Chair of the Minnesota Onsite Wastewater Association and the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association.  Sara serves on the NSF International Committee on Wastewater Treatment Systems.  She is also the chair of the Minnesota State Advisory Committee on Decentralized Systems.  She has BS in Biosystems & Agricultural Engineering and a MS and a PhD in Water Resource Science. Term expires December 2019

Michael Hines is the owner and Founding Principal of Southeast Environmental Engineering, LLC. (SEE) His company designs wastewater systems to serve individual properties, subdivisions, commercial developments, and small communities. He also owns and is President  Utility Capacity Corporation, Inc. (UCC), which builds these and other distributed wastewater systems. Both SEE and UCC operate and manage distributed wastewater systems for clients.He has been professionally involved with the distributed wastewater industry since 1966. He co-developed the recirculating sand filter treatment system with R.E. Favreau in the early 1970's and continues to foster its expanded use throughout theindustry. He has been active in NOWRA since the late 1990s and served on the National Model Performance Code Committee and Technical Practices Committee. He currently manages the operation and maintenance of 35 distributed wastewater systems in east Tennessee. These systems are owned by a Class V RME public utility and range in capacity from 1,000 gpd to 40,000 gpd. Mike believes NOWRA is at a decision point in its development. It will either become a leading voice of leadership and authority in the distributed wastewater field or it will become irrelevant and cease to exist. The disparate segments of the NOWRA membership - regulators, installers, service providers, designers, researchers, equipment manufacturers - must join together and work for some common goals that can be agreed on by all parties. Term expires December, 2017.

Joyce Hudson was appointed in June 2015 to fill an open Board of Directors seat and was elected to a full 3-year term in 2016. Joyce recently retired from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency following a 30+ year career. At her retirement, Joyce led EPA's Office of Decentralized Wastewater. She is a principal author of EPA's Voluntary National Guidelines for Management of Decentralized Wastewater Systems which was published in 2003 to assist state and local governments and others improve management practices which contribute to septic system malfunctions. Joyce led the implementation of a number of decentralized initiatives including a partnership with federal and state government officials and private industry, training and education for service providers and local officials, highlighting the needs of underserved communities and an awareness program targeting homeowners. Prior to her work with the Decentralized Wastewater program, she led the development of biennial surveys of needs for wastewater treatment, oversaw research efforts for the Office of Wastewater Management, and conducted an innovative and alternative technology evaluation program. Ms. Hudson received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering with water resources focus from Howard University in Washington, D.C., in 1980. Her term expires in December 2019.

Dwayne Jones is president of three companies involved in the onsite industry, Dwayne C. Jones Contracting Inc., Jones Pump Service and Bay Area Environmental. All are based in northern Maryland. He started in the onsite industry in 1983.and is currently involved in design, installation and service of systems for both residential and commercial systems. Dwayne has been a member of the MOWPA (Maryland Onsite Wastewater Professionals Association) board for the past seven years, and feels that the experience with the MOWPA board has prepared him for the next step as a member of the NOWRA board. Dwayne intends to focus on industry education. NOWRA is developing programs to be able to provide education to the onsite industry nationwide and and he looks forward to the opportunity to play a part in the development and implementation of these programs.  His experience locally in Maryland along with the experience of others from around the country will help to develop quality courses that can be used to better our industry as a whole. His term expires December 2018.

Tony Mendes has been in the Onsite industry for 25 years, primarily designing and installing systems and, for a brief 7 year period, owner of a small pumping business.  He sold the pumping business in 2013 due to health issues and recently transferred ownership of his design/insallation business to a family member. This semi-retirement allows him the time to continue to contribute to the industry that has gotten us to this point. He is a founding and current board member and past president of the Nebraska Onsite Waste Water Association. He serves on and has chaired the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality (NDEQ) Onsite Wastewater Advisory Committee, meeting and advising the state department regarding onsite rules and regulations (OWAC- 2004).  He also currently serves as the NOWWA Education Coordinator, working with the association, the NDEQ and the University of Nebraska Extension group, to develop and expand educational programs and opportunities in the state. His term expires December 2019.

Scott Rexroth works for Watermark Engineered Product Sales in Noblesville, IN. The company is a manufacturers representative serving Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Kentucky and Indiana with a wide range of wastewater products. His term expires December 2018

Kevin Sherman was appointed to fill an open board seat in early 2017. He has Bachelor of Science degrees in Biology and Civil Engineering, Masters Degrees in Biology and Public Health and a Ph.D. in Biological Oceanography.  Before becoming technical specialist for Presby Environmental, Inc., Kevin was Vice President of Engineering for Clearstream Wastewater Systems.  Dr. Sherman was also formerly the Director of Engineering for Quanics, Inc., executive vice president of the Florida Onsite Wastewater Association and before that worked for 14 years at the Florida Department of Health.  Kevin is past president of the Florida Environmental Health Association and the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association.  He is a professional engineer in twelve states and a registered sanitarian.  He has achieved the distinction of being named a diplomat of Water Resources Engineering. His term expires December 2017.

Denise Wright serves as a Regulator member of the NOWRA board and is the Division Training Officer for the Indiana State Department of Health, Environmental Public Health Division. She hasworked as a field representative in northeast Indiana for ~20 years before her job duties evolved into a statewide training officer role. She has extensive field experience with homeowners, onsite installers, service providers, designers, soil scientists, academia, and local/state level onsite regulators over her 27 year career. Denise is a member of the Indiana Environmental Health Association whereshe has served in several leadership positions, including president. She is also a member of the Indiana Onsite Wastewater Professionals Association, again serving in a variety of leadership roles. She is also a member of the Indiana Environmental Health Response Team, serving as a general environmentalist with that team. Denise loves serving the citizens of Indiana. In Indiana, onsite sewage systems are regulated in the context of the public health codes/laws versus an environmental protection approach. Her career has spanned several revisions to our residential and commercial onsite rule, and she feels fortunate to work with the group of professionals in Indiana that were present at the inception of the state's onsite program. Denise is most interested in contributing to NOWRA's education and training initiatives and is a strong advocate for NOWRA to become more involved in improving the quality of industry accreditation, certification and continuing education programs. Term expires December 2017.

Eric Casey has served as NOWRA's Executive Director since June 2010. He is responsible for the day-to-day operation of NOWRA, and works with NOWRA's volunteer leadership and committees, coordinating the association's advocacy, education and training, product development, external relations, communications and marketing activities. Eric's background is in association management and he has held senior executive positions for several membership-based organizations. Immediately prior to taking his current position, Eric ran an association management and marketing consulting firm. He earned his bachelor's degree from the University of Virginia and his MBA from The George Washington University.