ANAHEIM, CALIF. -- The American Water Works Association’s Annual Conference & Exposition kicked off today, drawing an anticipated 11,500 water professionals to drought-challenged Anaheim to explore the latest water technology and take part in hundreds of professional development sessions.
Among Tuesday’s conference highlights is the Best of the Best Water Taste Test at 3 p.m. in the Exhibit Hall. Twenty-nine regional winners of tap water taste tests will compete for one-year’s possession of the giant traveling trophy.
The sessions – which cover water resources challenges, infrastructure renewal, water quality and more -- continue throughout Tuesday and Wednesday. Tuesday will also include an 8 a.m. keynote featuring Peter Grevatt, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s director of Ground Water and Drinking Water, and an 11:30 a.m. Water Industry Lunch featuring Laura Ling, the journalist who in 2009 was captured and held captive in North Korea after reporting on the trafficking of women.
Dr. Wallace “J” Nichols addressed a crowd of close to 3,000 water professionals at the Anaheim Convention Center Monday during Monday’s Opening General Session. Dr. Nichols is a leading biologist and New York Times bestselling author of Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, and Better at What You Do.
In his presentation, sponsored by HomeServe, a leading provider of home emergency repair service plans, Dr. Nichols examined the emotional, behavioral, psychological and physical connections that draw humans to water. Nichols told the water professionals gathered that the blue marbles provided at the beginning of the session represented planet Earth and are “for the underappreciated work of the people in this room. You don’t hear, ‘Thank you. The water came out of the faucet this morning and I had a nice bath.’ ”
In addition to Nichols, attendees heard from AWWA President John Donahue, CEO David LaFrance and Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait.
Media Note: Accredited members of the media may attend ACE15 at no charge. For media registration, please visit the Press Desk in the Registration Lobby at the Anaheim Convention Center.
Established in 1881, the American Water Works Association is the largest nonprofit, scientific and educational association dedicated to managing and treating water, the world’s most important resource. With approximately 50,000 members, AWWA provides solutions to improve public health, protect the environment, strengthen the economy and enhance our quality of life.