Connecticut Commissioners

Robert Klee
NEIWPCC Executive Committee Member
In January 2014, Robert Klee was named commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP). Previously, he served for nearly three years as DEEP’s chief of staff, supervising the agency’s operations and serving as a key advisor to former DEEP Commissioner Daniel Esty. Before joining DEEP, Klee was an attorney with Wiggin and Dana, LLP, in New Haven, where he specialized in appellate work and energy and environmental law. He holds a J.D. from Yale Law School, a Ph.D. in Industrial Ecology from Yale’s School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, and a bachelor’s degree from Princeton in Geology and Environmental Science.

Yvonne Bolton
Representative of Robert Klee at NEIWPCC Executive Committee and Commission Meetings
Yvonne Bolton has worked at Connecticut DEEP since 1985 and is currently chief of the Bureau of Materials Management and Compliance Assurance. She oversees a wide variety of program areas including regulation and legislative development, coastal permitting and enforcement, solid and hazardous waste permitting, agency data integration and information management, and water quality management. Bolton is responsible for the bureau’s industrial, stormwater, and subsurface discharge programs; materials management programs; and emergency response and spill prevention programs. She has a J.D. and an M.A. in Environmental Law from Vermont Law School and a B.S. in Environmental Conservation from the University of New Hampshire.

Denise Ruzicka
Representative of Robert Klee at NEIWPCC Executive Committee and Commission Meetings
As director of Connecticut DEEP’s Water Planning and Management Division, Denise Ruzicka is responsible for oversight and funding of municipal wastewater treatment plants and water quality assessment, standards, and protection programs. She is a licensed professional engineer in Connecticut and has 30 years of experience in water resources management and public water supply planning. Ruzicka serves as chair of the State Board of Examiners of Environmental Professionals (LEP Board) and as the governor’s appointee to the Interstate Connecticut River Valley and Thames River Valley Flood Control Commissions. She is a graduate of Dartmouth College.

Raul Pino
Dr. Raul Pino is commissioner of Connecticut’s Department of Public Health. Prior to his appointment in February of 2016, Dr. Pino served as deputy commissioner and then acting commissioner of the agency. Previously, Dr. Pino served as director of the City of Hartford Department of Health and Human Services and as an epidemiologist for Connecticut DPH’s STD Unit. He graduated from the University of Havana with a Doctorate in Medicine, and from the UConn School of Medicine with an M.A. in Public Health.

Suzanne Blancaflor
Representative of the Connecticut Department of Public Health Commissioner at NEIWPCC Commission Meetings
A Connecticut DPH employee since 1997, Suzanne Blancaflor has served as the public health section chief for the environmental health section since 2008. She oversees a staff of 52 and manages eleven environmental health programs including private wells, environmental engineering, environmental laboratories, lead-poisoning prevention, and licensing of environmental practitioners. Blancaflor holds an M.S. from Eastern Connecticut State University and an M.P.H. from Southern Connecticut State University, and serves as an adjunct professor at both.

Arnie Bevins
Arnie Bevins has more than four decades of experience in water pollution control operations and management. He retired as assistant director and plant superintendent of the Water Pollution Control Department in Vernon, Connecticut, a role he held since 1988. In addition to his municipal experience, he simultaneously acted as a private contractor and technical advisor to a large industrial waste treatment facility.  Over his career, Bevins gained extensive expertise in municipal wastewater facility planning, design, and construction as well as industrial wastewater treatment. He serves on the board of directors of the Connecticut Water Pollution Abatement Association and was president of the New England Water Environment Association. Bevins is a graduate of Tunxis Community College.

Mark Zessin
Mark Zessin is cofounder, president, and principal owner of Anchor Engineering, a civil and environmental consulting firm. Previously, he worked for the Connecticut Department of Transportation, the state’s Solid Waste Authority, and a private consulting firm. Zessin has been a member of the Glastonbury Water Pollution Control Authority and the Connecticut Transportation Institute, and is a long-time member of the American Society of Civil Engineers. His professional work has focused on the development of controversial projects and the development and operation of materials handling facilities. Zessin is a licensed professional engineer in four states and holds an M.S.S. from Trinity College and a B.S. in Engineering from the University of Connecticut.