APWA eNews

APWA News Winter 2013 Vol. 49 No. 1                                   Download as pdf

In This Issue


From the President

BobPattersonGreetings Everyone,

This year is highlighted by our preparation for the Oregon Chapter’s 50th anniversary celebration in 2014. The number one goal of your board in developing our strategic plan update in late 2012 was to make the 2014 50th anniversary an event to remember and focus our support to everyone involved in organizing the celebration. An anniversary committee, headed by Peggy Keppler, is already at work targeting the 2014 Spring Conference in Seaside to host a celebration recognizing 50 years of service from Oregon Chapter members. I am chairing the 2014 Fall Conference in Pendleton as a follow-up celebration, and will have just turned 50 years old myself the month prior to the conference.

Several Board members recently attended a “Membership and Leadership Workshop” in Kansas City, headquarters for APWA National. On behalf of the attendees, we were pleased to see the national’s chapter website template evolve – it is almost in a format that would work for our Chapter and

committees. We will be spending more time in the coming months looking at this template and its future application for our Chapter. We also spent time discussing the generational issues as they related to workforce employment, especially with 10,000 baby boomers per month headed towards retirement. We hope all organizations are preparing themselves for this transition in the workforce.

We have two conferences coming up this year. The first is just a short time away at the Hood River Inn, April 3 through April 5. Just a quick reminder that information about the conference is available on our Chapter website: www.oregonapwa.org. We hope to see you there as Paul Shirey and company have been hard at work pulling this conference together. The fall conference will be held October 23 through October 25 at the Riverhouse Hotel and Convention Center in Bend. Peggy Keppler has graciously stepped up to head the conference committee. If you haven’t already, please place these dates on your calendar.

We are always looking for volunteers – whether you know of someone or have interest yourself, please do not hesitate to visit with any of our Board members or committee chairs – they are fairly easy to find at the conferences – and really easy to find on our Chapter website: www.oregonapwa.org.

Lookin’ forward to 2013,
Bob Patterson

OTAK Adverteising

Gregg Weston Nominated for Top 10 Public Works Leaders of the Year Award

Gregg WestonGregg Weston, Vice President of David Evans and Associates, Inc., and past president of the Oregon Chapter of the American Public Works Association, has been nominated by the chapter for the APWA National 2013 Top 10 Public Works Leaders of the Year Award
The award aims to inspire excellence and dedication in public service by recognizing the outstanding career service achievements of individual public works professionals and officials, from both the public and private sectors.

“Gregg led the Board of Directors through several difficult conversations that resulted in a sustainable budget while continuing the wide range of services provided by the Oregon Chapter to its members,” said Immediate Past President Mark Schoening in his nomination letter. “The sound financial health of the Chapter today can be traced back to Gregg’s leadership in 2009.”

In addition to being actively involved in his community and profession, Gregg has more than 40 years of experience in public works and civil engineering. His continuing education is extensive, and he is regarded as a knowledgeable mentor in the public works community. The nomination, unanimously endorsed by the chapter board, was prepared by Lucas Stewart from Allen Hall Public Relations at the University of Oregon, with great support from Barbara Blair at David Evans and Associated. View the nomination packet here.


SPEC Industries DitchMaint

Jones Nominated for Swearingen AwardEric Jones

Oregon APWA has nominated Eric Jones for the Harry S. Swearingen Award for outstanding chapter achievement and excellence in chapter service.
As the editor of the Oregon Chapter newsletter and webmaster of the Chapter’s web site, Jones has effectively been the voice of public works in Oregon for many years. In addition, he has been a regularly scheduled presenter at chapter conferences covering a wide range of public affairs topics. He has been on faculty for the Northwest Public Works Institute (NWPWI) since its founding where his presentations and lectures regularly receive top reviews. And he has shared his experiences on the national stage, having been selected to speak at the APWA National Congress & Exposition in 2003, 2004, and 2007.

“Eric (aka Bulldog) has been a tireless supporter of NWPWI, contributing his unique knowledge of public relations. Eric's presentations have helped many a public works practitioner prepare for the dreaded media interview and field reporters' questions with grace and diplomacy. “    
Jeanne Nyquist, NWPWI Instructor

Jones currently serves as a member and past-president of the board of directors of the Oregon APWA Scholastic Foundation where he instituted and led its first strategic planning process, the results of which are fully integrated with the goals and objectives of the Oregon Chapter. Jones makes it his business to get to know each of the dozen or so scholarship recipients each year, to reinforce with them the honorable calling of a public works career, and to get them involved at an early stage with chapter activities. 

Owen Equipment United Field Services

New Members 

Chris G. Bailey, Operations Manager, City of Albany,
541-917-7629, chris.bailey@cityofalbany.net

Kurt Budlong, Public Works Analyst, City of Wilsonville, (503) 570-1555, budlong@ci.wilsonville.or.us

Matthew Criblez, Environmental Compliance Mgr, City of Portland Environmental Svcs, (503) 823-9803, matthew.criblez@portlandoregon.gov

Deborah Dalenberrg, Training Coordinator, Washington County, (503) 846-7868, deborah-dalenberg@co.washington.or.us

Douglas W. Gabbard, Project Consultant, FCS Group, (503) 339-7582, dougg@fcsgroup.com

Dave Gehring, Wastewater Manager, City of McMinnville, (503) 434-7312, dave.gehring@ci.mcminnville.or.us

David A. Gilbey, Water Quality Program Coordinator, City of Lake Oswego Oregon, (503) 675-3999, dgilbey@ci.oswego.or.us

Brian Hemphil, Owner, Hemphill Water Engineering, (503) 522-9384, brianh@hemphillwater.com

Gary Irwin, Collection Systems Manager, City of Portland Environmental Svcs, (503) 823-3645, gary.irwin@portlandoregon.gov

Paul R. Jacobson, Administrative Services Supervisor, City of Albany, (541) 917-7677, paul.jacobson@cityofalbany.net

Matt M. Keenan, PE, Associate, KPFF Consulting Engineers, (541) 684-4902, matt.keenan@kpffcivil.com


Tim Kurtz, Sustainable Stormwater, City of Portland Environmental Svcs, (503) 823-5418, tim.kurtz@portlandoregon.gov

David W. Lee
, Customer Service Manager, City of Bend, (541) 322-6332, dlee@ci.bend.or.us

Nicholas P. Robertson
, Heavy Civil Division Manager, OBEC Consulting Engineers, (541) 683-6090, nrobertson@obec.com

Peter G. Slocum
, Senior Project Engineer, OBEC Consulting Engineers, (541) 683-6090

James C. Stouder
, Road Maintenance Manager, Benton County Public Works, (541) 766-6017, james.c.stouder@co.benton.or.us

Claudia L. Zahorcak
, David Evans & Associates Inc, (503) 449-0440, clza@deaninc.com

APWA Young Professionals

ROWA Trelleborg

Map Shows Oregon Chapter Membership Trends

APWA National prepares a membership map for each chapter that shows the distribution of the chapter’s membership across the chapter’s geographic boundary. It is not surprising that a good share of the Oregon Chapter members are located in the Willamette Valley. However, there are public works professionals across the state that would benefit from membership in APWA. Please take the opportunity to reach out to the public works professionals you may know in the underrepresented parts of Oregon and suggest they check out APWA  and the Oregon Chapter and the value of APWA to the public works profession.

Membership Map



In Touch with our History

Jeanne NyquistJeanne Nyquist has been an active member of the Oregon Chapter for many years. She led the chapter as president in 1997, chaired the education committee for a number of years and has served as president of the Oregon APWA Scholastic Foundation. In recognition of her great service to the chapter, she received the Bowes Award in 1999, and in 2000 was the recipient of the National APWA Donald C. Stone Award for Excellence in Education. She also got the Gizmo in 1995, which certainly signifies something. For many years, Jeanne’s “day job” was Maintenance Bureau director at the City of Portland Office of Transportation. A graduate of Marylhurst University, Jeanne also worked as a park ranger for Oregon State Parks. Jeanne is now a much-sought-after consultant with Innovative Growth Solutions, and she shares her deep knowledge and understanding of organizational design, leadership, facilitation and team building as a coach and trainer at the Northwest Public Works Institute. 

Q. Recalling the year of your presidency, what stands out in your mind?
I actually cannot recall my year of presidency – it was so long ago. I think this is an important point. Board accomplishments are usually not the result of any one individual’s accomplishments or leadership – the Board truly works as a team. Having said that, the following significant accomplishments during my time on the Board stand out:

  1. Growth of the Education Program -- In our strategic planning discussions, we determined that education is a key focus for the Chapter. We provided direction to the Education Committee and worked with them to do the following:
  2. Conducted a needs assessment of our members and member agencies through written surveys and focus group meetings. Survey info was compiled, shared  and discussed at conferences, resulting in focused priorities.
  3. Education Committee sponsored 12 – 15 workshops per year (in addition to conferences)
  4. Improved ‘marketing’ of educational offerings – Gordon Merseth came up with the tag line ‘If you think education is expensive, try ignorance’. The Board adopted the phrase, we worked with our event manager to design a consistent look for our workshop flyers, establish attractive price points, and to market to individual members, member agencies, and affiliated partner associations (such as AWWA, OWCPS, etc.)
  5. Developed mutually beneficial partnership with ODOT’s Technology Transfer Center to support APWA workshops.
  6. Formation of the Scholastic Foundation – The Board wanted to grow our scholarship offerings. We had a healthy balance in the Chapter’s funds. National APWA was in dire straits financially. We realized that if National ‘went under’, they could take all of the Chapter’s assets. We decided to seize the opportunity to create a scholastic foundation. We authorized Don Schut to find an attorney to write bylaws and set up a separate 501c(3) scholastic foundation. Don managed a very quick turn-around, we established the Foundation, and the Chapter Board voted to transfer seed money to begin the Foundation. All of this occurred in a few months.
  7. Re-inventing National APWA – The National Board made a number of critical decisions appropriate vetting process with the Chapters. Ultimately, the Chapters (Oregon was one of the first) called for the resignation of the Executive Director. A new Executive Director was selected and the Chapters worked with the National to redefine APWA. Oregon played a very active role working closely with APWA National President Ron Norris.


Q. Did you have a mentor in APWA? Who?

I had many mentors in APWA – too numerous to mention. If I have to mention to a few: Ron Norris, APWA National President, and Gordon Merseth, fellow Board member

Q. When did you first join APWA? Why did you join?
I don’t remember the year – must have been in the early ‘80s. I initially joined because my cohorts were coming back from conferences with valuable information. I became active in APWA when my boss – and mentor – Gary Pokorny, City Manager, encouraged me to get active in APWA committees and eventually participate on the Board.

Q. As a long-time member of Oregon APWA, what advice would you give to a person joining the chapter in 2013?
Get involved. Find something you are interested in and join in the discussion with your colleagues. From a common point of interest, you will:

  1. learn valuable information
  2. create powerful networks
  3. make life-long friends
  4. do something meaningful
  5. have fun!

Q. What didn't I ask that you'd like to talk about?
A colleague once asked me why I was so involved in APWA. He observed that I was just working way too hard – working at the agency and devoting time to APWA. I really had to think about this. In addition to the answers I listed above in question 4, I realized that APWA was the only place in my professional life that I could take an idea, find collaborators, and run with it to create something meaningful (like the education program and the foundation) in a fairly short time frame. 





Oregon Chapter of APWA About to Turn 50!

In October 1963 a group of public works officials met with Mark Westling, director of the Bureau of Municipal Research, to discuss the values that could be obtained from a formal organization of officials responsible for public works activities. As a result of the meeting a committee was formed to determine the interest of Oregon Public Works officials in a formal organization and to identify problems and other matters which were of common interest to the group.

Following the National APWA acceptance of the petition an organizational meeting of the Oregon Chapter APWA was held May 29, 1964, at the Imperial Hotel in Portland, Oregon. The by-laws were read and adopted by the group, formally acknowledging the beginning of the Oregon Chapter of the American Public Works Association.
Past President Peggy Keppler is heading up the charge for a years’ worth of celebrating. Major activities are planned for the 2014 spring conference in Seaside as well as at other APWA events throughout the year.

Mark your calendar to join in the celebration, and if you have any  anniversary ideas or would like to participate in the planning committee, please contact Peggy at Peggy.A.Keppler@ci.eugene.or.us. Or check out the 50th anniversary web page (still a work in progress) at www.oregonapwa.org/history.


Nominees Sought for APWA National Committees

APWA is soliciting nominations for technical committees, standing committees and others for presidential appointments by President-elect Ed Gottko for the August 2013–August 2014 year.

Any member may nominate themself or another member for service. Step forward and offer your expertise to your profession.

Information on appointments is available at  www.apwa.net/membersonly/nominations or by contacting Cindy Long at clong@apwa.net or (816) 595-5220. A brief bio must be completed online or through hard copy. Nominations must be completed by close of business April 1, 2013.


Rough Draft of 2015 Standard Specifications Update Available to View
The first draft versions of most of the sections of the 2015 Oregon Standard Specification manual along with the corresponding Boilerplate Special Provisions are now available for viewing on the ODOT web site at www.oregon.gov/ODOT/HWY/SPECS/Pages/2015-Draft-Specifications.aspx.

The 2015 Oregon Standard Specification Book draft only show the existing approved boilerplate special provisions that have been incorporated into the new book as well as errata to the 2002 book.  The Boilerplate Special Provision drafts only show what was included in the Standard Specification Book and what will remain a boilerplate special provision. These drafts do not include any of the "ODOT/APWA/AGC Process" subcommittee work nor does it include any of the "ODOT Change Process" items.
When complete in 2014, the 2015 update will be the product of revisions to the Standard Specs that ODOT has accumulated since publishing the 2008 manual, plus updates developed by committees working on the asphalt paving, erosion control, pipe lining and signals and illumination sections. These committees have been working since last year and include members from ODOT, APWA (cities and counties) and AGC. Following completion of committee work at the end of March, editing, legal review and FHWA will be performed, then final editing and printing. The 2015 version is scheduled to be available to purchase, or view on the ODOT spec webpage, around the first of July 2014.

 If you have questions or comments on the drafts described at the beginning of this article, contact Kit Leshk, 503-986-3759, Dan Anderson, 503-986-3136, or Paul Klope, 541-682-5246.

Last updated: March 15, 2013