WWEMA 115th Annual Meeting

November 8-10, 2023

The DeSoto, Savanah, GA

Schedule of Events

We are pleased to welcome you to the WWEMA 115th Annual Meeting. This year’s theme is Advancing Operational Excellence Through Inclusive Practices, Adaptive Strategy and Sustainable Solutions. The water sector has been experiencing an evolution where many factors are playing a role in changing it.  From the Circular Economy to the impacts of climate change – change is the single most impactful aspect! Our theme this year sets up a broad facet of topics influencing the water sector – from inclusion to sustainable practices and how they are related – and to the understanding of how water solutions are technology and human related due to the workforce relationships driving them.

Wednesday, November 8th — Committee Meetings, New Members, Board Meeting, Welcome Reception

8:00 a.m. — 5:00 p.m. Registration (Foyer)

8:00 — 9:30 a.m. WWEMA Executive Committee Meeting (Lafayette Suite)

9:30 — 10:30 a.m. Welcome Coffee for New Members & First Timers (Sapelo Room)

10:30 a.m. — 12:00 noon Marketing & Member Services Committee Meeting (Cumberland Room)

12:00 noon — 1:30 p.m. Lunch on Your Own

1:30 — 3:00 p.m. Legislative & Regulatory Committee Meeting (Cumberland Room)

3:00 — 5:00 p.m. WWEMA Board of Directors Meeting (Sapelo Room)

5:30 — 6:30 p.m. Welcome Reception (Harborview Room)

Thursday, November 9th

8:00 — 9:00 a.m. Networking Breakfast (Madison Ballroom)

8:00 — 9:00 a.m. WWEMA Manufacturers Representative Council Breakfast Meeting (Council Members Only) (Ossabaw Room)

All General Session Speakers (Cumberland Sapelo Room)

9:00 — 9:15 a.m. Welcome & Introductions from the Meeting Chair

Bill Decker, Vice President Water and Wastewater Treatment Technologies, Fuel Tech, Inc.

Meeting Chair and 2023 WWEMA Board of Directors Chairman

9:15 — 10:00 a.m. Innovation and Sustainability in Small Communities – The Present and the Future

Co-Keynote Speaker, Matthew Holmes

Chief Executive Officer, National Rural Water Association

With a career spanning leadership role in rural water associations and expertise in community-based planning and environmental public policy, Matt Holmes explores the pivotal role small communities play in shaping the water sector. The session will focus on infrastructure development, future funding models, and local resource utilization.

10:30 a.m. — 2:00 p.m. Spouse/Guest Event – Port City Food and History Tour (Advanced Registration Required)

10:00 — 10:30 a.m. Break

10:30 – 11:00 a.m. Sustainability and Equity – Engaging Communities

Co-Keynote Speaker, Dionne Delli-Gatti

Associate Vice President, Community Engagement

Environmental Defense Fund

Dionne Delli-Gatti brings her first-hand experience with community engagement and environmental justice to this eye-opening session. She will unveil community-driven strategies to mitigate environmental issues, especially those arising from petrochemical operations. She draws from her experience with the US Environmental Protection Agency, a Cabinet level senior staff at the State of North Carolina and her long tenure at the Environmental Defense Fund.

11:00 a.m – 12:00 noon Inclusion, Diversity and Sustainability – A Dialogue on What It Means

Ifetayo Venner, PE, ENV SP, Senior Vice President of ARCADIS’ Water Business,

Past President of the Water Environment Federation (WEF), and

 Dionne Delli-Gatti, Associate Vice President, Community Engagement, Environmental Defense Fund

Moderated by Rachael Seiler, Environment One Corporation

Ifetayo Venner, immediate past president of the Water Environment Federation (WEF) and North America Wastewater and Water Sustainability Leader at Arcadis, joins Dionne Delli-Gatti in this essential dialogue. With professional engineering credentials and degrees from McGill, Stanford, and the University of South Florida, Ifetayo brings a unique blend of academic and practical experience to the panel. The session, focusing on the critical importance of inclusion and diversity in sustainable water management, will be moderated by Rachael Seiler, outgoing Chair of WWEMA’s Marketing & Member Services Committee.

12:00 noon — 1:30 p.m. Networking Lunch (Madison Ballroom)

1:30 — 2:15 p.m. Wastewater Surveillance – How Monitoring Wastewater for Disease is Changing Public Health – The Role of Technology in this Evolving Space

Dr. Amy Kirby (Invited), National Wastewater Surveillance System Lead

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

With credentials in Microbiology and Epidemiology, Dr. Amy Kirby will delve into the long existing field of wastewater surveillance and its recent revolutionary impact on public health and the role of innovative technology. Her perspective is enlightening of what is to come in the future of technology in Waterborne disease early detection.

2:15 — 2:30 p.m.  Break

 2:30 — 4:00 p.m. Where Do We Stand Right Now on Build America, Buy America?

Michael Deane, Chief, Clean Water State Revolving Fund

Office of Water, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and

Deirdre Finn, Executive Director, The Council of Infrastructure Financing Authorities

Moderated by Catlin Berretta, Director, US Government Affairs

Evoqua Water Technologies | Xylem

Michael Deane, with a background in water policy and infrastructure financing, joins Deirdre Finn, an expert in environmental infrastructure funding, to focus and discuss on the status and future impact of Build America and Buy America policies on the water sector. Michael brings the federal perspective and Deirdre the state perspective – both, essential to the implementation of BABA and OMB’s Implementation Guidance. Caitlin will moderate this panel as the Vice Chair of WWEMA’s Legislative/Regulatory Committee where BABA is addressed on behalf of its members.

 6:30 — 7:30 p.m.  Chairman’s Reception (Foyer and Back Porch)

 7:30 — 9:30 p.m. Chairman’s Award Dinner (Madison Ballroom)

Friday, November 10th

8:00 –8:45 a.m.  Networking Breakfast (Madison Ballroom)

All General Session Speakers (Cumberland Sapelo Room)

8:45 — 10:15 a.m.  Insider Threat – From Onboarding to Offboarding:

Mastering the Art of Employment Lifecycle Management

Shawnee Delaney, Founder and CEO of the Vaillance Group

Drawing from her experience in the Defense Intelligence Agency (ie, spy) intelligence and cybersecurity, Shawnee Delaney will explore employment lifecycle management and its impact on organizational security. Shawnee will discuss how important onboarding of new employees and the offboarding of employees leaving your organization, whatever the reason, is to avoid insider threats and minimize risk to your businesses.

10:15 — 10:30 a.m.  Break

10:30 — 11:00 a.m. 

The Water Tower – Transforming the People, Future and Sustainability of Water

Melissa Meeker, CEO, The Water Tower

With over 30 years in water resources management, Melissa Meeker will discuss how The Water Tower is spearheading innovation, sustainability, and presenting collaboration opportunities.  As a hub for collaboration, The Water Tower is poised to impact workforce in the water sector including increasing hands-on experience with technologies – established and new. WWEMA and The Water Tower are ready to learn more about each other and explore how they may work together.

11:00 a.m.—12:00 a.m. The Funding Discussion- A Dialogue – What You Need to Know About Where the Money for Your Projects Are Coming From – SRF, WIFIA, And All the Rest!!

Michael Deane, Chief, Clean Water State Revolving Fund, Office of Water, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Claudio H. Ternieden, Executive Director, Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Association

 12:00 a.m.—12:15 p.m.  Closing Comments, Passing of Gavel, and Adjournment

Bill Decker, Meeting Chair and

2023 WWEMA Chairman

Henk-Jan van Ettekoven, President

HUBER Technology, Inc.

Incoming WWEMA Chairman



The WWEMA 115th Annual Meeting registration is now closed!

Hotel Reservations

This WWEMA 115th Annual Meeting will be held at The Desoto, 15 East Liberty Street, Savannah, GA 31401. WWEMA has a block of rooms reserved for the meeting for the nights of Tuesday, November 7 through Friday, November 10 (although there are a limited number of rooms blocked for Friday).


Aquamarine ($3,000), Emerald ($2,500), Diamond ($2,000), Platinum ($1,500), Gold ($1,000), Silver ($750), Bronze ($500), and Manufacturers Representatives and Associate Members Co-Sponsorship of Welcome Reception ($200) sponsorships will be available as soon as the registration opens.

WWEMA offers an opportunity for sponsorships to help create a dynamic and successful Annual Meeting. Sponsors are recognized in promotional materials, through social media platforms, the onsite program, from the podium, and on the meeting video screens as well as on the WWEMA website, in the WWEMA Update and News Releases, and in the post-meeting summaries and documents. Information is available through the registration process.