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November 23, 2010

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NAWC On the Move

Water is Your Business Series Hosted in Cambridge, MA

On November 15, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Water Companies (NAWC) and the Cambridge Chamber of Commerce hosted a forum at the Sheila Doyle Russell Youth and Community Center in Cambridge, MA, and discussed water infrastructure and local economic vitality. Participants at the “It’s Clear – Water is Your Business” program heard presentations on the importance of safe and reliable water from national experts, representatives of Chamber member organizations and City staff.

The program opened with greetings from Chamber President & CEO Kelly Thompson Clark and Cambridge Mayor David Maher. Mayor Maher described the city’s continued investment in water and sewer systems, and in community facilities including the youth center where the event was held. Participants were also greeted by event partners, Erika Berlinghof from the National Association of Water Companies and Janet Kavinoky from the Let’s Rebuild America program of the US Chamber of Commerce. Erika announced that Cambridge is the third community to host this co-created program and that the Water is Your Business series raises awareness of the significant economic and ecological impacts of water provision, use and disposal on communities everywhere. Janet said that the US Chamber recognizes that water infrastructure is a critical part of the physical platform of the U.S. economy and that this program helps to raise awareness of the needs and potential solutions to deliver sustainable water systems.

Other presenters included Rick Mattila from Genzyme and David Reilly from the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research, who discussed the importance of water to the life science industry, as well as Sam Corda, Director of the Cambridge Water Department, and Owen O’Riordan, City Engineer with the Cambridge Public Works Department. The program concluded with comments from Carol Rego, Vice President at CDM , who discussed how Cambridge is ahead of many communities in continuing to invest in the water system, as well as NAWC member Bill Ames from United Water who discussed his company and an award-winning public-private partnership that they’re involved with in Holyoke, Massachusetts.

A tour of the cutting-edge Walter J. Sullivan Water Treatment Facility took place immediately following the forum.