President's Message

Kelly Zimmer
Baraboo, Wisconsin
June 2015

 By the time you receive this issue of the Clarifier, summer will be upon us.   It's mid-May, and right now we
have frost warnings for this evening.  I am ready for some warmer weather! This Clarifier message will be a bit longer than my last; I suggest you refill your cup of coffee before reading.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources has issued the Phosphorus Multi-Discharger Variance Economic Report.  I would encourage all of you to familiarize yourself with it.  Written comments are to be submitted by June 11th, 2015 and it can be viewed on-line at http://dnr.wi.gov/topic/surfaceWater/phosphorus/statewideVariance.html?utm_source=FeatureImage&utm_medium=Homepage&utm_campaign=20150505_Phosphorus

Upcoming training opportunities are listed on our WWOA website.  The WWOA training committee is once again working on a training opportunity that is centered on energy savings and evaluations at wastewater treatment plants. This training will be held in mid-August at Plymouth, Wisconsin.  Also, there are several CMOM workshops being held in various locations throughout the state.  If you have questions on WWOA training opportunities, please contact Directors Jeff Smudde or Don Lintner.

I have been attending Regional meetings this spring.  I want to thank the regional officers as they have to put in a lot of their time and energy to make these meetings successful. These meetings contain a wealth of information and are a great way to keep on top of pertinent issues.

We are still looking for nominations for our awards, people to run for the State Board of Directors openings, Operators' Competition teams, and submittals for our scholarships and college tuition aid reimbursement.  Now, I know it is quite typical for people to wait until the last minute, but we have over 2,000 members and I can't believe there is no one that is taking advantage of what we have to offer.  What are you waiting for?

Based on the decision made at the Operators Business Lunch last year, lifetime members will begin paying dues this year.  This will be reflected on the conference registration form just like all regular members that have to pay dues.  All lifetime members will have to pay dues at a 20% discount ($40.00) bi-annually.  Karen Harter, WWOA Executive Secretary, will be sending out letters this summer to those lifetime members who will have to pay dues.

Conference registration for everyone will open mid-June along with the unveiling of our new website.  We will be sending out an E-Newsletter announcing the new website and the Conference on-line registration.  All members will also receive the Annual Conference Program in the mail at this time.  With the new website, your membership number will become your "username" instead of your email address.  This change was made because many of our members use a common/shared email address and our current website does not allow duplicate email addresses as a username.  Everyone's membership number is unique to that individual, thus letting us accommodate duplicate email addresses.  If you don't know your member number, look on the address label of this issue of the Clarifier and you will find it listed by your name.  You may also contact the Executive Secretary or the webmaster and they can give it to you.  We hope you like the new site as much as we do. 

The Kalahari will accommodate 132 display booths this year.  Exhibitor registration is open and you can download an exhibitor application from the website.  The cost per booth is $425.00 with a sponsor fee of $125.00 per booth (included in the exhibit cost).  The Sponsorship fee is charged to all manufacturers and consultants attending the conference whether they exhibit or not.  Note that we have extended the end date for early registration for exhibitors to June 30, 2015. 

There will not be printed copies of the abstract.  It will be available on the WWOA website for downloading and viewing later this summer and during the conference.

In an attempt to increase attendance at the Operators Business lunch, we have reduced the cost of the business lunch to $15.00 per person.  This is our annual meeting and member participation is very important.  There is a lot of useful information provided and major decisions are made that affect all members of the WWOA.  Plus, our annual Board of Directors elections are held during this time and we need you there to exercise your right to vote.  In addition, we will be giving away a 50" flat screen television to a WWOA member who is registered for and present at the business lunch. 

Unfortunately, we will not be offering a Guest program this year.  The programs set up each year have been exceptional; however, the participation has declined substantially over the past few years. Please contact any Board of Director member if you have any comments regarding the Guest program for future conferences 

Our Keynote address "The Healing Power of Humor" will be given by Dr. Stuart Robertshaw from La Crosse, Wisconsin.  In 1987 Dr. Robertshaw read that "preschool children laugh or smile over 400 times per day, adults over the age of 35 - only15 times per day". That single quote started his personal journey to review scientific and medical research regarding the benefits of laughter and humor.  By mid-1990, he announced the formation of the National Association for the Humor Impaired.  Selected as a novelty, that very title would catch the attention of the national press and serve as a vehicle to teach others about the benefits of laughter.  Through conference presentations and articles, featured in magazines such as Family Circle and Mature Outlook, the Association has received national attention in over 144 newspapers and 180 radio stations.  Referred by the press as "Dr. Humor", Dr. Robertshaw currently serves as President and CEO of the Association and will share with us what he has learned about the psychological and physiological benefits of humor and laughter as they relate to taking care of ourselves, our friends and loved ones.  You can view his talents on-line at www.drhumor.com. 

The entertainment of card games and raffle prizes following the Awards Banquet for the past couple years has been popular.  As such it will be similar again this year.  However, this year we will be increasing the amount of cash raffle prizes given out. Please remember, all conference members are welcome and encouraged to attend the entertainment.

Sharon Thieszen, WWOA Vice-President and Technical Chairperson, informed me that there will be a bike ride again this year.  We hope that participation in this event continues to grow.  The decorated bikes on display at the end of the ride are great entertainment for all to see! 

I am now going to go out and cover my garden plants due to the frost warnings that are predicted for this evening.  By the time you read this, hopefully those plants will be in full bloom for the summer season.

Kelly L. Zimmer, WWOA President