NEIWPCC Executive Director Poltak Receives NACWA Public Service Award
Award recipient Ron Poltak (second from right) at the NACWA Awards Ceremony, with (left to right) Ken Kirk, NACWA executive director; Marian Orfeo, NACWA president; and Philip Friess, chair, NACWA Awards Committee.
At the National Clean Water Policy Forum Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C., on May 4, 2009, New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission Executive Director Ronald F. Poltak received a Public Service Award from the National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA). The award recognizes officials at the federal, state, and local levels who have displayed particular and continuing awareness of the challenges facing the clean water community.
“Ron Poltak was honored with NACWA’s National Environmental Achievement Award for State Public Service for his exemplary commitment and service to his community, the environment, and to NACWA,” said Philip Friess, head of technical services at the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County, Calif., and chair of NACWA’s Awards Committee. “Under Ron’s leadership, NEIWPCC has expanded its outreach on water quality and sought to find common ground between municipalities and states to advance infrastructure funding initiatives. We are pleased to recognize Ron with this prestigious honor.”
In selecting Poltak for the award, NACWA also pointed to his work to help New England garner a strong leadership role on issues of national scope, and to significantly expand NEIWPCC’s focus to encompass activities in areas such as stormwater, nonpoint source pollution, and underground storage tanks. NACWA recognized Poltak for advocating not only for infrastructure funding but also for a paradigm shift to a watershed approach to resource protection.
“It has been my pleasure to work closely with NACWA over the years, and it is truly an honor to be recognized in this way,” Poltak said. “I would like to thank NACWA and everyone on its awards committee, as well as my team at NEIWPCC and all of our partners in the pursuit of clean water. Doing what we do requires hard work, commitment, and perseverance. But we have no intention of slowing down. Today’s water and wastewater challenges are different than in the past, but no less significant – and no less in need of our attention.”
The NACWA award is just the latest recognition of Poltak’s accomplishments. In 2006, he received a Lifetime Achievement Merit Award from EPA New England in honor of his efforts to preserve the region’s environment. Poltak has served as NEIWPCC’s executive director since 1983. Prior to joining NEIWPCC, he held various senior environmental positions with the State of New Hampshire, including director of parks and recreation.
For more on the NACWA award, and a complete listing of the other 2009 recipients, visit NACWA’s website.