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Speaker bios

SPEAKER BIOS

Jim Anderson
Jim Anderson, PhD; retired from the University of Minnesota as an emeritus Professor in the Department of Soil Water and Climate. He has worked in the onsite arena since the early 1970's.

Chris Antone
Chris Antone is a Principal in the Dallas, Texas, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He has been with the firm for more than 32 years and is Board Certified in Labor and Employment Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Mr. Antone has the distinction of being named one of the nation's top 100 labor lawyers by the Labor Relations Institute for five consecutive years. Recently, Legal 500 noted Mr. Antone as an “individual with distinction” in workplace and employment counseling. He is a frequent and highly sought speaker on hiring and other human resources issues. Chris has well-earned reputation for avoiding the "legalese" and explaining concepts in a clear, concise way which is easy for the layman to understand.

Tom Ashton
Tom Ashton has been an on site system active field practitioner / designer for over 30 years.  Tom has worked for over 20 years with American Manufacturing Co. Inc. (AMC) of Elkwood Virginia.  Tom has advocated the soil treatment unit and promoted the application of drip dispersal for soil based treatment. Registered Environmental Health Specialist, Licensed Professional Soil Scientist Licensed Alternative On Site Evaluator.  Mr. Ashton has a B.S. Environmental Health from Old Dominion University, Norfolk VA and a M.B.A. from Shenandoah University, Winchester VA.

Dick Bachelder
Dick Bachelder’s career in the onsite industry began in 1990 with PSA, Inc., a Maine company which developed the BioDiffuser line of plastic leaching chambers. When Advanced Drainage Systems, Inc. (ADS) purchased PSA, Inc. in 2000, Dick joined ADS. Instrumental in the development of the Arc line of plastic chambers and growth of the GEO-flow sand-lined system market while at ADS, his responsibilities for both PSA and ADS included management of all onsite-product-related approval issues. In 2013 Infiltrator purchased ADS’s chamber assets and Dick joined Infiltrator’s Science & Government Affairs Department, where he continues to focus on product approval development and management, as well regulation development. Dick’s industry involvement includes his past service on the Ohio Department of Health’s Technical Advisory Committee, and his present positions as a voting member of the Canadian Standards Association’s (CSA) B65 Technical Subcommittee on onsite wastewater system design and installation, a founding member of NOWRA, Director of the Massachusetts Association of Onsite Wastewater Professionals (MAOWP), and a member of the State Onsite Regulators Association’s (SORA) ad-hoc Committee on Sustainability.

Jim Bransfield
Jim Bransfield oversees Infiltrator’s Marketing, Customer Service, Inside Sales and International Sales departments, with responsibility for marketing and sales issues related to Infiltrator’s complete line of onsite wastewater system products.  Mr. Bransfield has 20 years of experience in the wastewater systems industry both domestically and overseas.  He received a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Rhode Island.                

Mary K. Clark
Mary Clark has worked in the onsite industry for 40 years, as a licensed designer working for engineering firms and on her own; as a regulator permitting onsite systems in VT in the 1980’s and currently as I/A program manager and staff hydrogeologist; and as a scientist evaluating impacts from onsite systems and developing community wastewater management plans. She has a B.S. degree from the University of Connecticut in Natural Resources Conservation, continues to hold a Vermont Designer License, was co-author of several technical papers and reports, and has presented on a local, regional and national basis. She is also a past member of the Board of Directors of NOWRA and YOWA.

Larry Earney
Larry Earney is an Area Sales Rep for Infiltrator Systems, Inc. covering DE, MD, PA and NJ. He has been in the water/wastewater industry for 18 years. Earney studied economics and engineering at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. After the Navy, he was employed by Anne Arundel County in MD as a utilities and infrastructure inspector dealing with commercial and public water, sewer, roads and storm drain projects. Earney has been an installer and designer of onsite systems in both MD and PA. He is a Pennsylvania DEP Certified Sewage Enforcement Officer and Pennsylvania Septage Management Association (PSMA) Certified Inspector for onsite wastewater systems. Earney instructs several onsite classes throughout Pennsylvania, including the PADEP approved septic installation course offered jointly through the Pennsylvania Association of Sewage Enforcement Officers and PSMA.

Sheryl Ervin
Sheryl Ervin, Director of Regulatory Affairs with Bio-Microbics, received her B.S. in Geology from Missouri State University and M.S. in Geology from New Mexico State University. Prior to joining Bio-Microbics, Ms. Ervin worked in the environmental and petroleum industries for 18 years; the last nine included source water protection planning and government regulatory work in onsite wastewater for the State of Kansas. She joined Bio-Microbics in 2013 to provide regulatory expertise. Ms. Ervin currently serves as treasurer on the Kansas Small Flows Association board, on the NOWRA Education Committee, the State Onsite Regulators Alliance (SORA) Conference Planning and Data Sharing Committees and assists with the Captains of Industry (COI), an affiliate organization of SORA. As a state regulator, she served on the SORA board and held the positions of President-Elect and President.

Heidi Faller
Heidi Faller is the program manager for EPA's Decentralized Wastewater program. She is a 20 year veteran of the agency, and previously served in the Office of Water, working directly for the three most recent directors of that office. She has also served as a special assistant to two of EPA's Chief Financial Officers.

Donna Fiorentino
Donna Fiorentino oversees Infiltrator’s Marketing needs including, print and video, website building and maintenance, social media, as well as supporting the sales team with in-field initiatives. Donna has over 25 years of experience in graphic design, publishing and marketing. She received a Bachelor’s degree from Central Connecticut State University..

Catherine Flowers
Catherine Coleman Flowers is the Director of Environmental Justice and Civic Engagement of the Center for Earth Ethics at Union Theological Seminary. She is the founder of the Alabama Center for Rural Enterprise Community Development Corporation (ACRE) which seeks to address the root causes of poverty by seeking sustainable solutions. She also serves as the Rural Development Manager for the Equal Justice Initiative serving the citizens of Lowndes County, one of the 10 poorest counties in Alabama’s Black Belt. Ms. Flowers has been able to bring significant resources to address its many environmental and social injustices. Specifically, her work at ACRE addresses the lack of sewage disposal infrastructure in Alabama's rural Black Belt, the legacy of racism and neglect stretching back to the time of slavery. Ms. Flowers is also an internationally recognized advocate for the human right to water and sanitation and works to make the UN Sustainable Development Agenda accountable to front-line communities.

Claude Goguen
Claude Goguen has more than 20 years of experience in the precast concrete and construction industry.  He holds degrees in Civil Engineering and is a licensed P.E. in Indiana and a licensed P.Eng. in Canada.  Prior to his role in technical services with NPCA, Claude was an operations manager at a precast concrete manufacturing plant.  Since starting with NPCA, Claude has focused on the onsite wastewater industry and served as the staff liaison to the NPCA Water and Wastewater Structures Committee.   Claude has presented courses and seminars relating to precast concrete septic systems at various federal, state and regional onsite wastewater meetings over the last 7 years.

Dave Gustafson
Dave Gustafson, PE; Currently is an Extension Educator working through the Water Resources Center at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. He has over 25 years of hands on experience in the design, installation, inspection and operation of onsite systems of all kinds. He has been using this experience to educate people both within and outside the industry and is recognized as one of the premiere educators in the country. Jim Anderson, PhD; retired from the University of Minnesota as an emeritus Professor in the Department of Soil Water and Climate. He has worked in the onsite arena since the early 1970's.

Dennis Hallahan
Dennis F. Hallahan, P.E., has twenty-six years of experience with the design and construction of on-site wastewater treatment systems. He has authored several articles for on-site industry magazines and has given numerous presentations nationally on the science and fundamentals of on-site wastewater treatment systems. Dennis also is responsible for product research and testing at Universities, test centers and private consultants.  His department develops system sizing charts for national and international approvals and assists customers and field representatives in the planning and review of large commercial decentralized systems. Many of these systems are in excess of a million gallons per day. He received his MS in civil engineering from the University of Connecticut and his BS in civil engineering from the University of Vermont.  Dennis is a registered professional engineer in Connecticut.  He has been with Infiltrator Systems for 17 years and holds the current position as Technical Director.  Dennis also holds patents for on-site wastewater products and is a member of the Water Environment Federation and of the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association and has served for several years on the NOWRA Technical Practices Committee, the Educational Committee and also serves on NEWEA’s Small Communities Committee.

Tracy Hammond
Tracy Hammond manages the day-to-day lobbying activities for NOWRA at Polsinelli, LLC, NOWRA's Washington-based lobbying firm. He brings a strong and varied experience in marketing, politics, and advocacy to his clients. As a member of the firm’s National Public Policy group, he assists clients interested in shaping energy and environmental legislation and regulation. He advises both individual companies and coalitions with strategic planning and tactical implementation through advocacy with fellow industry members, elected officials, and other key decision makers. He also updates clients on current and potential public policy impacts of federal legislation and regulatory actions and helps guide interaction with policymakers to take advantage of opportunities and avoid possible threats. Tracy has worked extensively with clients on issues including smart grid deployment, traditional and renewable energy development, petroleum and bio-based transportation fuels, chemical regulation, energy efficiency, and tax policy. Tracy has more than a decade of direct interaction and representation before the U.S. Congress and many government agencies. He entered politics by serving as an aide to the Minority Floor Leader of the Missouri General Assembly in Jefferson City, Mo. After arriving in Washington, D.C. He soon became an account executive for the Campaign Media Analysis Group (CMAG), providing political media activity analysis to both electoral and issue advocacy campaigns. Prior to joining Polsinelli, Tracy served as Vice President at Dutko Grayling (formerly Dutko Worldwide), where he was responsible for advising clients with the firm’s Energy, Environment and Sustainability practice. He holds an undergraduate degree from Southwest Missouri State University and a Masters from The George Washington University.

Sara Heger
Dr. Sara Heger is a research engineer and instructor in the Onsite Sewage Treatment Program in the Water Resources Center at the University of Minnesota. Since 1998, 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 evaluate the impacts of sodium chloride from water conditioning on the environment and to 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 and the Chesapeake Bay Onsite Wastewater BMP Expert Panel and is the chair of the Minnesota State Advisory Committee on Decentralized Systems.  She has BS in Biosystems & Agricultural Engineering and a MS and PhD in Water Resource Science.  

Mike Hines
Michael Hines has over fifty years of experience in the field of wastewater design, construction, operation, management, and regulation.  He holds a BS in Engineering from Southern Illinois University and a MS in Environmental Health Engineering from Kansas University.  He served 14 years as Sanitary Engineer with the Illinois Department of Public Health, 14 years as Manager of Environmental Compliance with TVA, and 22 years to date as Founding Principal of Southeast Environmental Engineering, LLC.  Mr. Hines designed, constructed, operated, and managed over 30 large, decentralized wastewater systems in east Tennessee owned by a regulated public utility.  In Illinois in the late 1960s, Tony Favreau, P.E. and Mr. Hines developed the recirculating sand filter treatment systems now used throughout the wastewater industry.  Mr. Hines is on the NOWRA Board of Directors and serves as Chair of the Water Environment Federation Small Communities Committee.

Josefin Hirst
Josefin E. Hirst is an environmental engineer with over 10 years’ experience in water and wastewater engineering. Mrs. Hirst is an Associate with Hazen and Sawyer, P.C. Since joining the firm in 2005, she has worked on a wide variety of wastewater treatment design, planning, pilot testing and construction projects.  Josefin holds a B.S. degree in Biosystems Engineering from Clemson University and a M.S. degree in Soil and Water Science from the University of Florida.  She was the project engineer for the Florida Onsite Sewage Nitrogen Reduction Strategies project initiated by the Florida Department of Health.

Anish Jantrania
Dr. Anish Jantrania is an Associate Professor/Extension Specialist in the Biological & Agricultural Engineering Department at Texas A&M University. Dr. Jantrania has over 25 years of experience working in the wastewater industry, in the public and private sectors, with a focus on On-Site Sewage Facilities, and decentralized wastewater systems.

Kevin Johnston
Kevin Johnston grew up in a family run septic system business working in the industry around his school schedule. Kevin is a recent graduate with a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Oregon Institute of Technology in Klamath Falls, Oregon. Kevin will be starting graduate school in fall 2016 at University of California, Davis focusing on onsite wastewater systems. He has assisted in the design, installation, and maintenance of residential and commercial onsite wastewater treatment systems with Acorn Onsite, Inc. based in Livermore, California.

Michael Keleman
Michael Keleman currently serves as Manager of Environmental Engineering for InSinkErator, the world’s leading manufacturer of food waste disposers. He has nearly 20 years of experience as a wastewater treatment professional, starting at a laboratory in Lafayette, IN and progressing to supervision and management of Indiana facilities capable of treating from .3 MGD to 40 MGD, including treatment plants required to address combined sewer overflows. Mr. Keleman obtained a Bachelor of Science from Purdue University in Environmental Health Science and has a Master’s of Science in Environmental Engineering from the Milwaukee School of Engineering. He holds various certifications and licenses for water and wastewater treatment operations and is a Registered Environmental Health Specialist with the National Environmental Health Association.

Paula Kehoe
Paula Kehoe is the Director of Water Resources with San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC). She is responsible for diversifying San Francisco’s water supply portfolio, including conservation, groundwater, and recycled water programs. Paula spearheaded the landmark legislation allowing for the collection, treatment and use of alternate water sources in buildings and districts. She worked for the SFPUC General Manager and assisted with the planning the $4.6 billion capital improvement program to rebuild the third largest water delivery system in California. She served as Public Education Director for the SFPUC’s Water Pollution Prevention Program receiving six state and national awards.

Russell G. Martin
Russell Martin is a graduate of the University of Maine and is a licensed Professional Engineer and licensed Site Evaluator in the state of Maine.  He has over 41 years of experience relative to subsurface wastewater treatment and dispersal between private and public sector service, and was formerly the Director of the Subsurface Wastewater Program, Division of Environmental Health, Maine Department of Health and Human Services.  He is currently the owner of Public Health Solutions, PLLC providing both training and design services relative to onsite wastewater dispersal. Mr. Martin is active in several professional organizations including the Maine Society of Professional Engineers, the Maine Association of Site Evaluators, and the Massachusetts Association of Onsite Wastewater Professionals, a state affiliate of the National Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association.  He recently concluded a three year term on the NOWRA Board of Directors and is currently the chair of the NOWRA State Affiliates Committee.

Michael B. McGrath
Michael B. McGrath, P.E., P.L.S is the principal partner at Holmes and McGrath, Inc., a land surveying and civil engineering firm in Falmouth, MA. He is a Professional Engineer (Civil) and Professional Land Surveyor. He is a member of Massachusetts Association of Land Surveyors and Civil Engineers (MALSCE), the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE), Water Environment Federation (WEF) and of Soil Science Society of America (SSSA).  In 1984, Mr. McGrath and his partners designed, permitted, built and operated the first alternative, innovative denitrifying septic system, a RUCK system in Massachusetts. The design of Residential Ruck Systems have evolved through three different typical designs. Today in Massachusetts, Innovative RUCK Systems, Inc. guarantees 80% minimum removal of dissolved nitrogen in water passing through a residential RUCK system. From 2002 to 2004, Mr. McGrath was a founder and part-time employee of Environmental Operating Solutions, Inc., (“EOSi”), the manufacturer of the MicroCTM family of carbon products designed for denitrification.  In 2013, Mr. McGrath cofounded with others, a firm called Ground Penetrating Carbon, Inc. which has invented a process where a special carbon is added to already treated water before discharge to the ground.

Chris Mohart
Chris Mohart’s value-oriented thinking and approaches enable him to deliver effective solutions that align with clients’ business objectives. Chris represents owners, design professionals, general contractors, subcontractors, and sureties and has negotiated and drafted numerous contracts and handled a variety of claims relating to: Breach of contract, Insurance coverage, Design errors and omissions, Bid protests, Payment and performance bonds,  Mechanic’s liens, and an array of federal and state statutory violations. As a litigator, Chris has successfully represented clients in arbitration, as well as state and federal courts, both at the trial and appellate levels.

Jeff Pringle
Jeff Pringle is an Account Manager for the Western US Region at Orenco Systems, Inc., a wastewater equipment manufacturing firm based in Sutherlin, Oregon. In his role, he works to manage and grow customer accounts in California, Nevada, Arizona and Hawaii. Since joining Orenco in 2005, Jeff has become a frequent presenter for Orenco, providing training for regulators, engineers, installers, service providers, and electricians, as well as other Orenco customers. Jeff has an Associate of Applied Science degree in digital systems technology from Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon.

Danna Revis
Danna Revis majored in Geology at the College of William and Mary and obtained a Master of Arts in Learning Technologies through Pepperdine University.  During her undergraduate and shortly thereafter she worked at a small hydrogeologic consulting firm in Newport News, VA, on groundwater remediation, groundwater supply, and onsite sewage projects.  She then worked in Manassas, VA, for 14 years at the Prince William Health District as an Environmental Health Specialist, evaluating, permitting, inspecting, and repairing conventional onsite systems and wells.  She also managed the septic tank pumpout database and reviewed plans for treatment systems and pressure dispersal systems.  In 2001 she took a short break from state employment to work for HealthSpace USA, Inc., the company that provides the environmental health database for Virginia.  In 2002 she returned to state employment as the Training Coordinator for the Office of Environmental Health Services. In her current position, she conducts training for new environmental health staff in onsite sewage systems and private wells through Southside Virginia Community College among her other training duties.  Danna also serves as a board member for the Virginia Onsite Wastewater Recycling Association.

Kit Rosefield
Kit Rosefield has 30 years of industry experience in operation and maintenance of onsite technologies and served as executive director of the California Onsite Wastewater Association (COWA).

Andrew Sawyers
Andrew D. Sawyers is the Director of the Office of Wastewater Management at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, DC, where he oversees the management of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES), the Clean Water Act’s mechanism for the permitting of municipal and industrial discharge into surface waters of the U.S.  In his role as the Director of OWM, Andrew is also responsible for multiple technical and financial assistance tools for the development and maintenance of the country’s wastewater infrastructure, including the Clean Water State Revolving Fund. Previously at EPA, Andrew was the Deputy Director of the EPA’s Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water.  In that capacity, he worked with the Director to manage the implementation of the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act.  Prior to EPA, he was the Deputy Director for the Maryland Water Quality Financing Administration, managing the State’s Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds and Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fund.  Andrew has a Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University in Geography and Environmental Engineering.

Kevin Sherman
Kevin Sherman 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.

Robert Siegrist
Dr. Robert L. Siegrist (a.k.a. Dr. Bob) is a faculty member at the Colorado School of Mines where he is a University Professor Emeritus of Environmental Science and Engineering, a Professor in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, and Director of the Small Flows Program. From 2001 to 2010, he also served as Director of the Environmental Science and Engineering Division at CSM. Before joining CSM in 1995, Dr. Siegrist held academic and research positions with the University of Wisconsin, Norwegian Institute for Georesources and Pollution Research, Ayres Associates Inc., and Oak Ridge National Laboratory.  He earned his B.S. (High Honors) and M.S. in Civil Engineering and his Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering at the University of Wisconsin working within the Small Scale Waste Management Project. Dr. Siegrist is an internationally recognized expert in onsite and decentralized systems for wastewater treatment and in situ remediation of contaminated soil and groundwater. He has published 300 technical papers and 3 books and holds 2 patents. His most recent textbook, “Decentralized Water Reclamation Engineering” is being published by Springer-Nature.  He has given invited lectures at more than 100 workshops and conferences in more than 30 countries worldwide. He has also served as a science and engineering advisor to government agencies in the U.S. and abroad and has been a Fellow with the NATO Committee for Challenges to Modern Society.


Wilf Stefan
Wilf Stefan has a Mechanical Engineering Degree and an MBA. He has worked in the decentralized industry for over 10 years. Initially with a packaged water and wastewater treatment plant equipment manufacturer, and more recently with Clearford Water Systems providing full collection and treatment solutions for decentralized applications.

John Thomas
John Thomas is the Executive Director for the Washington Onsite Sewage Association and has been in this role for the last 15 years. Among other duties, he manages the NWOTC training center and the WOSSA online distance learning center that provides education to over 600 industry service providers . He is the lead instructor for safety related classes on Pathogen Exposure to Service Providers, Safety Management Principles for Small Business owners and also teaches Confined Space Entry and program development for the association to industry service providers. He holds a B.S. degree in Environmental Earth Sciences from Northern Michigan University.

George Tchobanoglous
George Tchobanoglous, a professor emeritus in the UC Davis Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, worries about how to deal with what we leave behind. Tchobanoglous — affectionately known by colleagues and students as “George T” — is an international authority on wastewater treatment, management and reuse. He’s widely recognized for promoting the use of new technologies in four key areas: the construction of wetlands for wastewater treatment; the application of alternative filtration technologies; ultraviolet (UV) disinfection for wastewater reuse applications; and decentralized wastewater management. His ground-breaking work on the use of aquatic plant systems for wastewater treatment led to the first national conference on this topic, back in 1979. At that point, he was nearly a decade into a 35-year teaching career at UC Davis, which had begun in 1970. As chair of the National Water Research Institute’s UV committee, he helped draft the first UV guidelines for water reuse. His recognition as an expert on decentralized wastewater management systems led to his being drafted as a keynote speaker at numerous conferences. Tchobanoglous has written more than 375 publications, including 14 textbooks and five engineering reference books. The textbooks are used in hundreds of college and universities throughout the United States, and by engineers in the States and abroad. He also served as editorial consultant for the McGraw-Hill book series, Water Resources and Environmental Engineering. Tchobanoglous was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in early 2004, in recognition of his contributions to engineering education, engineering practice and public service in the field of environmental engineering. This honor followed numerous earlier accolades, such as the 2003 Athalie Richardson Irvine Clarke Prize for Excellence in Water Research, given to outstanding research scientists who have implemented better water-science research and technology. Wanting to encourage those following in his footsteps, in 1999 Tchobanoglous and his wife established the George and Rosemary Tchobanoglous Graduate Fellowship: an endowed fund designed to recognize outstanding graduate students in environmental engineering. According to the Tchobanoglous’ wishes, the fellowship is reserved for students studying toward a master’s degree, who are not considered candidates for a doctoral degree. Recipients are selected each year by faculty members in the Department of Environmental Engineering.

Nick Weigel
Nick Weigel is a Senior Civil Engineer and partner, specializing in the design of decentralized wastewater collection, treatment and dispersal systems. For the last 14 years, Nick has focused his energy on onsite wastewater system design, permitting, construction, and operations.

June Wolf
Dr. Wolfe is involved in research investigating erosion and sedimentation caused by land disturbance. He manages and directs the Water Science Laboratory at Texas A&M AgriLife Research’s Blackland Research and Extension Center in Temple, Texas.  The laboratory conducts basic research in water resource conservation and management.