California Urban Water Agencies focuses on affordable, reliable water supplies
July, 2022 – San Diego County Water Authority General Manager Sandra L. Kerl is taking the reins as board chair of California Urban Water Agencies (CUWA), a nonprofit corporation that supports development of sound water policy statewide.
The Water Authority is one of 11 member agencies of CUWA that are collectively responsible for serving drinking water to about two-thirds of California’s population. As the united voice for the state’s largest urban water purveyors, CUWA provides a technical perspective to promote common understanding and consensus-based solutions for urban water issues.
Kerl is joined on the CUWA Executive Committee by Anselmo Collins, Senior Assistant General Manager of the Water System at Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, as Vice Chair and Valerie Pryor, General Manager of Zone 7 Water Agency, as Secretary/Treasurer.
CUWA brings together the expertise and resources of its member agencies to advance reliable water supplies for the state’s current and future urban water needs in a cost-effective manner that benefits the public, the environment, and the economy. Learn more at: www.cuwa.org.
“I am honored to help lead this unique and respected statewide organization as we work to increase affordable, reliable water supplies for all Californians during drought conditions unlike any in modern times,” Kerl said. “Increasingly frequent and severe droughts are a grim reality of life in the Southwest, and we must work together to strengthen the reliability of our water systems to sustain our future economy and quality of life.”
In addition to drought, CUWA’s top priorities and the areas that Kerl will focus on during her term are providing technical assistance to struggling water systems across California and increasing the diversity, equity and inclusion work pioneered by CUWA and its member agencies.
Kerl has served as the Water Authority general manager since 2019. Her career highlights in the water industry include leading the effort to secure financing for the nation’s largest seawater desalination plant, a public-private partnership that was hailed as a model for other large-scale water works around the country. She has more than 35 years of progressively responsible experience in all aspects of municipal management. Before her career in water, she served as city manager of La Mesa, California, and has broad experience with city management, extensive knowledge of organizational issues, and a pragmatic understanding of capital project management and delivery.
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The San Diego County Water Authority sustains a $240 billion regional economy and the quality of life for 3.3 million residents through a multi-decade water supply diversification plan, major infrastructure investments and forward-thinking policies that promote fiscal and environmental responsibility. A public agency created in 1944, the Water Authority delivers wholesale water supplies to 24 retail water providers, including cities, special districts and a military base.