PNCWA Awards Program

Award Nominations Period Closed

Know a person, project, or organization who accomplished something incredible this year? 
You can recognize great work and people – nominate your supervisor, peer, or employee. There are awards for nearly every type of position in the clean water industry and nominations from across Idaho, Oregon, and Washington are welcome! Please help us recognize the best in our industry by completing a simple online PNCWA Awards nomination form today. Award winners will be recognized at the PNCWA Annual Conference.

Acknowledging individual and system contributions is a key function of PNCWA.



Individual Awards:

  • Arthur Sidney Bedell (Extraordinary Service to PNCWA)
  • Laboratory Analyst Excellence
  • William D. Hatfield (Treatment Plant Operations)
  • Individual Distinguished Achievement
  • Lyman Ketcham (Collection System O&M)
  • Woman of the Year
  • Stormwater Professional Excellence
  • Outstanding Young Water Environment Professional
  • Operator of the Year Awards


Project and/or Facility Awards:

  • George W. Burke, Jr. (Facility Safety)
  • Innovative Stormwater Project
  • Municipal Water Protection
  • Sustainability/Excellence in Resource Recovery
  • Watermark Award


Nomination Process

  • You must be a PNCWA member to submit a nomination.
  • Click on awards below to learn more, review criteria, and see past winners.
  • Carefully review award qualifications to ensure your candidate is eligible.
  • Each award has a unique nominations form. Fill it out and attach supporting documents as requested.
  • Nomination forms require a Google sign-in

Note: Nominations may require nomination letters, supporting documentation of nominee accomplishments, nominee photo, etc. Please review carefully before beginning the nomination form. Once you start the form, you cannot save your progress to return later.

 Contact the Awards Committee Chair with any questions.


Individual Awards

Arthur Sidney Bedell Award (WEF–PNCWA Award)

The Bedell Award recognizes an individual who has contributed extraordinary personal service to a WEF Member Association.

Laboratory Analyst Excellence Award (WEF–PNCWA Award)
Recognizes individuals for outstanding performance, professionalism, and contributions to the water quality analysis profession.  

William D. Hatfield Award (WEF–PNCWA Award)
The Hatfield Award recognizes wastewater treatment plant operators who exemplify outstanding performance and professionalism. 

Individual Distinguished Achievement Award (PNCWA Award)
This award recognizes distinguished service contributing to the advancement of the industry. 

Lyman Ketcham Award
 (PNCWA Award)
The Ketcham Award recognizes a person focusing on wastewater collection systems who exemplifies outstanding performance and professionalism. 

Woman of the Year Award (PNCWA Award)
The Woman of Year award recognizes women who have excelled in their career, have forwarded water issues and/or have made a significant achievement to the water industry. 

Stormwater Professional Excellence Award (PNCWA Award)
The award recognizes individuals for outstanding performance, professionalism, and contributions to the stormwater profession. 

Outstanding Young Water Environment Professional of the Year
This award recognizes the contributions of young water environment professionals for significant contributions to PNCWA and to the stormwater or wastewater collection and treatment industry.

Project/Facility Awards

Burke Award (WEF–PNCWA Award)
Recognizes a municipal or industrial wastewater facility for establishing and maintaining an active and effective safety program. 

Innovative Stormwater Project Award (PNCWA Award) 
This award recognizes and encourages projects that showcase innovative stormwater elements.

Municipal Water Protection Award (PNCWA Award)
The Municipal Water Protection award recognizes municipality or group of municipalities that have contributed to the control or prevention of water pollution problems. 

Excellence in Resource Recovery & Sustainability Award (PNCWA Award)

Recognizes projects that showcase either sustainable design elements or substantial resource recovery (nutrient, energy, water, carbon recovery). 

Watermark Award (PNCWA Award) 

Recognizes PNCWA members who have produced top-quality education, public outreach, and communication programs or projects that encourage and promote the water resource industry.


Additional Awards

(Awards for which nominations are not submitted to the PNCWA Awards committee for review)

Operator of the Year (Regional PNCWA Award)
(Nominations do not go directly to PNCWA)

Operator of the Year and Collections Operator of the Year Awards are given in each Region—Oregon, Idaho, Western Washington, and Eastern Washington. Sections in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington nominate individuals within their Region, as outstanding Treatment Plant Operators and Collections System Operators to be recognized by PNCWA. Regional applications: Treatment Plant Operator and Collections System Operator

The award represents outstanding job performance of regular duties, and individual or collective accomplishments of an experimental, developmental or innovative nature.

The Regional Director coordinates the process for each Region, and the process may vary slightly for each Region. Contact your Regional Director or have your Section President do so. For Eastern Washington nominations, send application to PNCWA Managing Director, Marie Schmidt.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Must be a section member


President's Award (PNCWA Award)
This award is given to an individual by the PNCWA President in appreciation of outstanding contributions to PNCWA activities and to fulfilling its mission. Recipients are chosen solely by the president.

Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers (5 S)
The Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers is sanctioned by PNCWA but is directed by the members of the Society. The Society gives recognition to PNCWA members who have contributed to PNCWA but do not qualify for or have not received other honorary awards or have not served as PNCWA officers. Past receipt of other awards does not preclude membership in the Society. The Society supports PNCWA activities as deemed suitable by the Society, with the approval of the Board. Society members select the nominees. A nominee must be an active member of PNCWA. Honorary membership may be extended to non-members at the discretion of the Society for significant contributions to WEF and the profession of environmental engineering, i.e. a WEF Board member attending the PNCWA conference. The Chair or "pH7" of the Society conducts the induction of new Society members at the annual conference.

Stockholm Junior Water Prize (WEF-PNCWA Award)
The Stockholm Junior Water Prize (SJWP) is the world's most prestigious youth award for a water-related science project. The prize taps into the unlimited potential of today's high school students as they seek to address current and future water challenges.

Entries into the Stockholm Junior Water Prize competition are judged based on six different criteria: relevance, creativity, methodology, subject knowledge, practical skills, and report and presentation. Unlike other science competitions, this competition weighs the quality of the scientific research paper much more heavily than the poster presentation.


WEF Distinguished Honors and Awards

WEF is proud to present honored recipients with a variety of awards for their hard work in protecting one of the world's most valuable resources. Award recipients are individuals who contribute to the sustainability of water resources and make a profound impact on the future of the world's water through involvement with water professionals and education.

Quarter Century Operators’ Club

The Quarter Century Operator Club recognizes operators of wastewater treatment facilities for their service and dedication in a difficult and dangerous profession. The Club was created under the sponsorship of Frank Woodbury Jones, who served as the Clubs' first registrar. Check out the PNCWA members recognized in the Quarter Century Operator Club here

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Member of WEF for a minimum of five consecutive years immediately preceding application.
  • Significant, full-time participant in the water environment profession for a minimum of 25 years, 10 years of which must have been actively involved in the day-to-day collections, maintenance, operations, laboratory, or management of a wastewater transportation or treatment facility.

WEF Life Membership 
This distinction is for individuals who have been a member of WEF and one or more WEF Member Associations for 35 or more consecutive years, and are at age 65 or older.

WEF Distinguished Honors and Awards
The Water Environment Federation Honors and Awards Program provides an opportunity to recognize individuals and organizations that have made outstanding contributions to the water environment profession, WEF, and its Member Associations.

WEF is proud to present honored recipients with a variety of awards for their hard work in protecting one of the world's most valuable resources. Award recipients are individuals and organizations that contribute to the sustainability of water resources and make a profound impact on the future of the world’s water through involvement with water professionals and education

In addition to PNCWA awards, WEF has an awards program. Several PNCWA awards align with the following WEF awards:

  • Collection Systems Award (Ketcham Award)
  • Outstanding Young Water Environment Professional Award (same name)
  • WEF Project Excellence Award (Municipal Water Protection Award)
  • WEF Safety Award (Burke Award)

Previous PNCWA award winners in these areas are encouraged to consider applying for the corresponding WEF award. For more information visit WEF's awards website. WEF award nominations are due April 1st. 


Contact Info

Aaron Duke, Hazen and Sawyer
Awards Committee Chair