A new In Memoriam update was recently published on the WEF Highlights page and can be found here: Ken Kerri, CWEA Past President and WEF Leader.
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of CWEA Past President, Dr. Kenneth D. Kerri on December 15, 2014, mentor and friend to so many in our field.
Dr. Kerri was recently inducted into the WEF Fellows Program for his impact on our profession and his long tenure as a professor at the Office of Water Programs at California State University, Sacramento. His contribution to the “Ken Kerri books” for providing critical training for wastewater professionals, and his analogous series of texts for water supply systems have been critical to wastewater education. As Professor Emeritus from Cal State Sacramento, he continued his efforts to promote wastewater treatment and to reduce water pollution worldwide.
He was active in leadership roles of CWEA and WEF for decades. He was CWEA (then California Water Pollution Control Association) President from 1983-84, was a member of the WEF (then Water Pollution Control Federation) Executive Committee from 1986-87, and was active on the WEF Collections System Committee since the early 1980s. He remained active with WEF and CWEA training events, both via presentations and in networking activities. His professional association mentoring included work with student groups, as he inspired new generations of wastewater professionals.
Ken Kerri’s work for WEF was recognized with numerous honors and awards, including honorary WEF (then WPCF) membership, the Gordon Maskew Fair Medal Award, the Arthur Sydney Bedell Award, and Collections Committee awards. His long-term work with CWEA also garnered special recognition and numerous awards.
Dr. Kerri’s contributions to professional associations and to overall advancement of the water environment went beyond the wastewater field. He received awards from and honorary membership in the American Water Works Association. He was also given the President’s Award for Outstanding Service by the Association of Boards of Certification.
His support for CWEA’s mission to enhance the education and effectiveness of California’s wastewater professionals through training and certification was inspirational. As a mentor to generations of new leaders, a role model of professional achievement and contribution to WEF and CWEA, and an icon for his invaluable series of books for wastewater professionals, he will be greatly missed.
Services are scheduled for December 27 at 11:00 am at the Fremont Presbyterian church, Carlson and H street, Sacramento, California.
If you care to share your memories and condolences, please do so in the comments section below or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will share with Dr. Kerri’s family.
The Office of Water Programs is sharing the following obituary at the request of the Kerri family.
Kenneth Donald Kerri, Ph.D., age 80, passed away suddenly after a brief illness with his beloved family at his side. He is survived by his loving wife Judy, son Chris (Anne), daughter Kathy Krizl (Norman), two grandchildren, Justin and Sarah Kerri, brother Richard Kerri, and devoted dog Angel.
Ken Kerri was born April 25, 1934, in Napa, California. He graduated from Napa High School in 1952, attended Napa College, and Oregon State College (BSCE, 1956); University of California, Berkeley (MS in Sanitary Engineering, 1958); and Oregon State University (Ph.D., Sanitary Engineering, 1965).
He started working as a professor teaching civil and sanitary engineering classes at Sac State in 1959. He became an emeritus professor in 1997. During his teaching career Ken mentored hundreds of civil engineering students and received several awards, including the Distinguished Faculty Award.
In 1968, he started working on operator training programs, establishing the CSUS Office of Water Programs in 1972. He served as the Project Director for projects that developed and implemented training programs for the operators of water treatment facilities, water distribution systems, wastewater collection systems, municipal and industrial wastewater treatment and reclamation facilities, pretreatment facility inspection, and utility management. In 2005, over 1 million operator training manuals had been sold and more than 250,000 operators from all over the world had enrolled in the training programs. The manuals have been adopted as textbooks in over 300 colleges and universities and have been translated into 12 different languages. The operator training programs provided Ken and Judy the opportunity to travel all over the world. Most recently, he was the senior advisor on a project to train and license operators of water and wastewater plants for the country of Jordan; this project has been expanded throughout the Middle East.
As a professional consulting engineer he provided professional consulting services for cities, counties, special districts, states, federal government, universities, industries, and consulting engineering firms. Throughout his career he received many awards, including the top honors by the Water Environment Federation and the American Water Works Association.
He enjoyed hunting, fishing, skiing, walking his dog by the American River, hiking, playing bridge, and spending time with his wife, children, their spouses, and grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, December 27, 2014, at 11:00 a.m. at Fremont Presbyterian Church, 5770 Carlson Drive, Sacramento, CA 95819.
In lieu of flowers, Ken requested that donations be made to the Ken Kerri Endowment Fund, which was established in 2009 to build a foundation for the education of future engineers.
Checks may be sent to:
Department of Civil Engineering
Attention: Ms. Neysa Bush California State University, Sacramento
6000 J Street
Sacramento, CA 95819-6029