Five Reasons to Get Excited About This Year’s PNCWA Conference

We’re less than a week away from the 2017 PNCWA Conference! We look forward to the conference every year, but this October we’re especially excited. Conference Chair Lara Kammereck and Technical Program Chair Corinne DeLeon have outdone themselves and have provided an inclusive program with a diverse range of events, activities, and tracks. Here are five reasons why this year’s conference is better than ever.

1. Tons of Networking Events

The annual conference is about learning new skills, celebrating each other’s hard work, and planning for the future. But it’s also one of the only times when folks from all over the Pacific Northwest are all in one place. This year, there’s something for everyone with networking events.

Starting at 4pm on Sunday, the First-Time Attendee and New Members Meet & Greet is a great way to meet other new attendees and committee chairs, followed by an All-Attendee Meet & Greet at 5pm. Later that night there’s an offsite Students and Young Professionals Meet & Greet. And that’s just day one!

On Monday, there’s a Women’s Networking Event from 4:30–5:15 for women in all sectors of the industry. After that is the Exhibit Hall Opening Reception. Later that evening, join attendees for the Monday Networking Event at the local Loowit Brewing Company.

2. Social Justice and Equity

Managing water resources has critical implications for people’s lives, economic development, and social prosperity. Any framework used to promote clean water management should adhere to principles that protect the environment and serve communities equitably. As PNCWA President John Phillips wrote, “This is not new to our industry; it is embedded in our work,” and it’s the theme of this year’s conference.

Our opening session, Equity and Social Justice, includes three outstanding speakers—Ben Duncan (Chief Diversity and Equity Officer for Multnomah County), Kim Powe (Climate Justice Director and Acting Deputy Director of Puget Sound Sage), and Eileen O’Neill (Executive Director of WEF)—who will talk about these issues.

For the technical program, PNCWA is proud to announce two new tracks: Diversity & Leadership on Monday and Equity & Social Justice on Tuesday. We’re embedding these values in our conference just as they should be in our industry.

3. Vendor Mobile Sessions

Our exhibitor hall is packed this year with vendors ready to tell you about the latest technology and products available for the job. This year, we’re offering something new and special with mobile vendor sessions in our technical program. These six sessions will be on the floor, and exhibitors will be demonstrating first-hand how to use new technology. You’ve seen it at WEFTEC, and now you can experience it at the PNCWA Conference too! Catch them Tuesday morning in the Exhibit Hall.

4. Donation to Vancouver Watersheds Alliance

The Vancouver Watersheds Alliance is a nonprofit in Vancouver, Washington, that educates and engages community members to be active stewards of the Vancouver area’s creeks, lakes, and other water bodies. Their programs comprise stormwater management, green stewardship, creekside restoration, and more. In place of a service project this year, PNCWA will be presenting this great nonprofit with a donation on Tuesday night. Learn more about the Alliance here.

5. My Water Legacy Booth

What does “My Water Legacy” mean to you? Inspired by WEF’s “My Water Legacy” video, we’ll be collecting attendees’ stories of what your work represents at a special booth. There’s no correct response—just a place for you to tell your story about what inspires you and how your work impacts the future. 

All these activities are on top of the technical program, innovative technology track, preconference workshops and treatment plant tours also in store for this year's conference! 

Thanks again to our organizers and Conference Champs:
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