Meet a 5S Golden Shoveller: Gary Warren

Zaheer Shaikh, Jed Beyer, David Bachtel, Tom Falk(kneeling), Gary Warren, Jonathan Powell, Susan Hiestand, Amanda Bird, Debi Lewis, Vicki Conway (not pictured)

Gary Warren
East Bay Municipal Utility District
5s 2019

Gary Warren was recognized by his peers in receiving a 5S Award in April at the Annual Conference 2019 in Palm Springs.

His CWEA participation started simply, by attending various local dinner meetings and training seminars in the San Francisco Bay Area. These CWEA events provided him a great opportunity to meet other local wastewater professionals, find out what they were working on, and learn a bit about other key issues for the wastewater industry.

In 2007, Gary started supervising the East Bay Municipal District’sWastewater Design Section. This team works on a wide range of facilities, including the District’s main wastewater treatment plant, sewer interceptors and pump stations, resource recovery facilities, and recycled water treatment systems. The range of projects needed to maintain and upgrade these facilities has presented numerous challenges.

In order to provide more training opportunities for the engineering design team, he got involved with the San Francisco Bay Section’s Professional Development Committee(PDC). The PDCis well known for the great job they do providing local training events. They also have a wide range of volunteers and access to technical experts willing to share their knowledge and expertise.

The committee has provided Gary a fantastic opportunity to not only get to know these people, but to learn from them what types of training is needed most, and how to plan and run various events.

The level of involvement continued. After his first year on the PDC, Gary chaired a few of their seminars and enjoyed every minute of it. This was about the time that the chair of the committee, Arvind Alekla, asked Gary to join the committee board. Before he knew what happened, Gary was chairing the committee. Gary has continued to follow Arvind’s lead and his CWEA progression:

  • He joined the board of the local section, and is currently finishing his fifth year holding the past president position.
  • Last year, Gary started on the board of CWEA’s Engineering and Research Committee.
  • 2018 began Gary’s try at CWEA’s Annual Conference (AC18). With Arvind’s encouragement, Gary joined the committee, helping with the education planning team for both AC18 and AC19 and now serves as the chair for AC20. Time will tell if Gary follows Arvind in joining CWEA’s board next…

In summary, Gary has really enjoyed his involvement with CWEA. The level of enjoyment seems to increase exponentially with the level of participation. The opportunities to learn and to meet and work with such a great group of people, all committed to doing important work, are key.


Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers  (5S Society) recognizes individuals active in protecting the water environment through participation in Local, State, and/or Federal sponsored activities. Nominations are being accepted through Feb. 1, 2020. Please consider nominating your peers who have or are contributing to the advancement of the wastewater profession.  This is not a self-nominating award.  Your peers count on you to recognize their achievements and nominate them. Nominate your peers today.

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