Kudos

George Hawkins is the most enthusiastic public servant I have ever met!  Washington, DC Mayor Vincent C. Gray, Green Infrastructure Award Event, Winter, 2014

It’s wonderful to see someone who has that kind of commitment to clean water.  I don’t think I’ve ever heard anybody talk with that level of enthusiasm about flushing a toilet, about watching the water go down the drain, about the thrill of turning on a spigot.  All of those things are things we take for granted.  George, I want to thank you for what you do every day for our folks.  Washington, DC Mayor Vincent C. Gray, Fall, 2012

If I had to pick someone I wanted to work for, there’d be no one higher on my list than George Hawkins. As a manager of 30,000-some people, I put this as his number one asset. I think his ability to support, inspire and marshal the troops and appreciate the role of the front-line worker is second to none.  Washington, DC Mayor Adrian M. Fenty, September 3, 2009

Thank you for taking time out of your incredibly busy schedule to travel to Detroit to participate in the Middle Market CEO Summit.  Your willingness to share your honest perspective provided attendees with first-hand examples of leadership guiding the team to solutions.  Tammy J. Carnrike, CCE , Chief Operating Officer, Detroit Regional Chamber, November 29, 2016

On behalf of the Energy Secretary Leadership Group, I would like to thank you again for the time you spent with us and the very interesting tour at DC Water.   The group commented many times in the days that followed about the innovation and the commitment to mission we observed.  As we work to envision and enable a sustainable future for water and energy, it was both inspirational and informative.  Nancy Haegel, National Renewable Energy Lab, October 2016

I can’t say thank you enough for everything you did for us yesterday. You were roundly rated as our best dinner speaker ever but beyond that people got the message I wanted them to get. You definitely laid the groundwork for me to build from. For this I am truly grateful. I hope I can continue to turn to you for advice as I shape IL’s agenda for water in the coming year. Your story, insights from so many perspectives, and creative out of the box solution oriented design thinking inspire me to do the same. I’d be grateful to have a mentor of this mindset.  Carol Hayes, Executive Director, Prairie Rivers Network, Illinois, Gala Dinner, October 2016

Thank you for taking the time to speak to our community leaders.  I received many favorable remarks about the afternoon.  It was eye opening to hear about the public relations opportunities with green infrastructure.  I don’t think anyone had considered that aspect before.  I’m very grateful to you for providing such a compelling and informative speech.  C. Eliana Brown, Sea Grant Illinois-Indiana, Meeting on Green Infrastructure with Municipal Leaders, October 2015

You were listed as the motivational speaker which I was a bit confused thinking I was simply going to hear about DC Water. Well excuse me, you were motivational and you fired everyone up. We are all so used to being quiet and in the background with all our stuff underground or thinking no news is good news, but we really do have a lot to be proud of and what we do really does matter. We know it but we don’t ever say it.  Chuck DiLaura, Neptune Meters, Joint Meeting of the Alabama and Mississippi AWWA, October, 2016

Learning about the inspiring work you’re all doing at DC Water was incredible and served as a powerful example of servant leadership. The work you’re all doing is not only pioneering but notable for the culture of innovation that you’ve instilled.  The other important and powerful lesson you conveyed was the importance of communicating the mission both internally and externally.  As up-and-coming leaders, you gave them a lot to think about and take back home.  Teeb Al-Jamarrai, Inaugural Class, Energy Sciences Leadership Group, US Department of Energy, September 2016

Thank you so much for your excellent talk on disadvantaged communities in September.  We really appreciated you insights and the attendees were engaged.  In fact, we have never received as many questions until you spoke!  Water Smart Team, WEFTEC, September 2016

I would like to personally thank you for your presentation to the KWEA and KsAWWA  Conference this week.  Your years of experience, research, and depth of understanding in the water industry allowed you to present the water topic in such an interesting way.  Your enthusiasm was contagious, we hope to maintain that kind of energy throughout the year in our section.  Lester Estelle, President, Kansas Water Environment Association, Joint Annual Meeting, August, 2016

You certainly hit a grand slam at our Water Summit!  Look forward to sharing the stage in New Orleans.  Dean Amhaus, President and CEO, The Water Council, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, July 2016

I want to thank you for taking the time out of your very busy schedule to participate in the Nitsch Engineering’s Client Seminar on Green Infrastructure.  Your Keynote made the session.  I love your energy and passion for what you do!  Much appreciated, Lisa Brothers, Nitsch Engineering, Spring 2016

Thank you very much for your participation in our congressional briefing yesterday on water.   Your perspective on regulation and infrastructure was extremely useful for the staff members.  Thanks Again. Marilyn Serafini, President, Alliance for Health Reform, May, 2016

What an absolute pleasure to have you join our event.  I am so grateful because I know what a “rock star” you have become and how crazy your schedule is, so it is an honor to have you with us.  Thank you so much for sharing.  Bernadette Conant, Canadian Water Network, May, 2016

You knocked it out of the Park!  A complete grand slam. You’re a water utility all star!  Our guests were more impressed with you than the view out the windows of the CEB Conference Center…not an easy task.  Thanks for giving up a Thursday night to help us continue to empower a local movement for clean water.  I look forward to continuing to collaborate with you to improve the nation’s river.  Hedrick Belin, President, Potomac River Conservancy Gala, May 16, 2016

…I wanted to add my own sincere thanks for your thoughtful participation.  We’ve received very positive feedback from many meeting participants about the panel discussion and that was due in such large part to the high technical quality and excellent engagement from the three of you.  Elizabeth A. Eide, Ph.D., Water Science and Technology Board meeting, The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, Medicine, April 2016

I am indebted.  You knocked it out of the park last night.  Steve Woods, Executive Director, The Freshwater Society  That was amazing.  Plenty of rave reviews and people are still talking about it.  Darrell Gerber, Research and Policy Director, Freshwater Society.  April 2016

We want to thank you for being a spectacular keynote speaker at the Smarter DC Challenge’s The Future of Water: Sustainability Stewardship & Leadership event.  You helped make it the success it was.  I was not surprised by the numerous comments we heard from people who were inspired and energized by your presentation.  I recently read a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson and it made me think of you and your great skill in public speaking, “Speech is power: speech is to persuade, to convert, to compel.”  You are one of the few people I know who can tell a personally passionate and truly engaging story about a city’s infrastructure.  Patty Rose, Sustainability and Leadership Event, Washington, DC, April 5, 2016

A few years ago, I heard the then newly appointed General Manager of DC Water George Hawkins speak at a meeting of the Federation of Citizens Associations.  George may be the BEST public speaker I have ever heard.  Interested, interesting.  Succinct.  Forthright.  Well prepared.  Entertaining.  Truly a gifted speaker.  Don’t miss it – you will wish we had more public servants like him. List Serve comment before the Ward 3 Town Hall in Washington, DC, April 2016

Thank you for your time and valuable insights shared with the Metropolitan Council Environmental Services Staff in April.  Your energy, message and leadership were inspiring to say the least!  We are having great conversations as a result, with work already underway better connecting our region to collectively do better, together.  Sam Peske, Metropolitan Water Council, St. Paul, Minnesota, April 2016.

It was wonderful meeting you last week at the US Water Partnership event at the US Institute for Peace.  I attend a lot of conferences in my current role, and I have to tell you — your comments and insight made for one of the most interesting, transparent and entertaining conversations I’ve heard in a long time!  Sara Steele, Lead Manager,  Sustainability, The Dow Chemical Company, March 31, 2016

I wanted to thank you for organizing the Georgetown MBA tour.  George’s talk absolutely stunned the students and was…perfect for the last day of class.  The students were truly inspired.  One who works on Wall Street told me he is going to shift the focus of his finance.  Another who is a former reporter for The Economist told me it was the highlight of his entire MBA career.  Mark Giordano, Director, Program in Science, Technology and International Affairs, Georgetown University, March 2016

Just wanted to say that I really enjoyed you “Change Leadership” episode on the Water Values Podcast…twice!  I listened to your podcast this time for guidance on how to help turn around an enterprise by inspiring pride in the work being done, then improving the external communications.   James Woddenberg, PE, CCM, Resident Engineer, March 12, 2016

George, what can I say!  George, your talk was great, and it truly inspired and rejuvenated our members.  Lots of energy was generated and more good ideas followed.  Mary Barry, Executive Director, New England Water Environment Association (NEWEA)  I did not want to let another day go by without a note of thanks for the efforts you made to speak to the NEWEA Conference in Boston.  Your determination to make the trip despite a record setting snow storm was as impressive as your talk.  The attendees that I spoke with could not get over the passion and energy you conveyed.  Mike Bonomo, NEWEA Past President, Boston, February 1, 2016

Thank you for infusing so much insight into the last day of our Summit.  You are a tremendous role model for all of us.  Michael, Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District, January 2016

On behalf of the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Committee on Sustainability, we would like to thank you for speaking recently at the ASCE Sustainability Summit.  Your presentation was both impacting and motivating.  Your expertise inspired attendees to think more broadly about the sustainability challenges we face.  Thomas W. Smith III, EVN SP, CAE, F.ASCE, ASCE Executive Director, January 2016

On behalf of all of the MWRTBA members, I wanted to thank you very much for speaking at yesterday’s annual Holiday Luncheon.  We appreciate you taking the time out of your schedule and your incorporating what all of our members do into your talk.  Michael Sakata, Executive Director, Metropolitan Washington Regional Transportation Business Association, December 17, 2015

Thank you so much for taking the time to attend and speak at our event “The City: Upstream and Down” at Wingspread.  It was invaluable to have someone with your  background and experience participate.”  Gary Belan, American Rivers, November, 2015

I wanted to thank you for taking time out of your hectic schedule to speak to EPA staff.  It was such a pleasure to meet you and hear about all the innovating things you are doing at DC Water.  More importantly, thank you for all you’ve done to advance sustainability in the water sector.  We need more champions like you!  I hope our paths continue to cross.  Adriane Koenig, ORISE Research Fellow, US Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Science and Technology, October 2015

Thank you for spending time with a room full of people who discovered, as they listened to you, that they are fascinated by sewer systems.  I, for one, was quite dazzled that DC, which has often landed on lists of troubled cities in the past, has embarked on a series of nationally significant innovations, giant tunnels underneath the sewer system, giant and fast digesters, and now large scale green infrastructure.  Mary Procter, Past President, Capital Hill Village, May 23, 2015

You were terrific yesterday…and how terrific as you said it was to see how much progress there has been.  If we can set up something to help our Ph.D. student,  Theo, who is working in this area, that would be great.  Also, I would personally love to see more of what you are doing in Washington, DC.  Susan Wachter, Professor, Penn Institute for Urban Research, Forum on Stormwater Management, May 20, 2015

A quick note of thanks & congrats again.  You are a hero with the work you do for the city and region.  Thank you for our leadership and support on so many fronts.  Sean C. Cahill, Chair of the Board, DC Business and Industry Association, May 11, 2015

Thank you again for serving as the keynote speaker at the Leadership Greater Washington (LGW) Class of 2015’s Environmental Sustainability Day…You help LGW make an impact in the lives of our members.  We appreciate your energetic contribution as our keynote speaker because it set the right tone for an incredible day.  The class emphasized how your presentation gave them a deeper insight and a unique understanding into this region’s water systems and the progress that your program is making.  Mioshi J. Moses, COO and VP for Membership, Leadership Greater Washington, April 24, 2015

Thank you for sharing your time and appearance on The Water Values Podcast.  Your insights on communication — internal and external — were fantastic and it would serve leaders for US, or anywhere, for water utilities to heed that advice.  David McGimpsey, The Water Values Podcast, April 20, 2015

Thank you so very much for being part of the CSAWWA/CWEA [Chesapeake section of the American Water Works Association and Water Environment Association] Career Fair!  It was wonderful meeting you, and hearing your inspiring Keynote Address.  A number of students told me what a wonderful opportunity it had been to meet with you, and also to get some insight into this field.  Radhika Wijetunge, Brown and Caldwell, Chesapeake Career Fair, Baltimore, MD., February 14, 2015

Thank you so much for participating in the YP (Young Professional’s) Summit.  We got ore feedback about your speech than anyone – in fact you may have reached Rock Star status.  We really appreciate all your time and efforts.  Nancy Sullivan, Young Professional’s Summit and the Utility Management Conference, Austin Texas, February 17, 2015

Thank you so much for your participation in last week’s Making Connections event.  The extraordinary work you have done throughout your career to protect the environment and now, to revitalize the Anacostia, is a huge contribution and was evident throughout your inspiring presentation.  While we have a long way to go, the progress that’s being made is a demonstration that it can and will be done,  Roger Sant, Chairman of the Board, the Summit Fund of Washington, at the “Making Connections” capstone event about the Anacostia River, November 2014

Many thanks for speaking to the (Johns Hopkins School of Engineering) group last Thursday.  Your talk – all you do and have done is really inspirational.  The enormity of the DC operation and the ingenuity among other things to run an organization and make it work is something people were not aware of.  Professor Grace Brush, Johns Hopkins University, November 10, 2014

George! It was a pleasure meeting you last night at Georgetown University’s Speaker Series! Your candid conversation opened my eyes even more about why we should care about infrastructure in our cities! As a City Planner who is currently enrolled in the Master’s of Urban and Regional Planning program, I have made argument to focus more on infrastructure to attract the right type of development. Thank you!  Jonathan Bush, Georgetown University Graduate Student, at “Planning Big Investments in Big Cities,” November 3, 2014, Georgetown University Speaker Series

I just got the information that the DC Chamber of Commerce has chosen you as the Business Leader of the Year! Wow! Congratulations!  From all the public Utility leaders I’ve met, you are in my view, with no doubt, the most business minded one, in the best sense of the term.  While having a strong sense of the public mission, you share a vision for the whole water business, promoting fiscal responsibility and management capability.  I think it is great that a Private Sector body such as the Chamber of Commerce publicly recognizes what you’re doing.  David Alexandre, Appia Consulting, on DC Chamber of Commerce Business Leader of the Year Award, October 2014

I wanted to offer sincere thanks for your taking the time to address our group at the AAEES breakfast at WEFTEC.  Your remarks were enlightening, refreshing, and obviously heartfelt.  You have a great story to tell and do a great job of telling it.  Add to that the pioneering work that DC Water is doing, and we have the makings of a dynamic success story that more people need to be aware of.  I wish we had been set up to record your talk.  Burt Kalweit, Executive Director, American Academy of Environmental Engineers and Scientists, October 2014

Your luncheon presentation was the best I have ever heard, but every time I hear you speak it is a new best.  Thank you for sharing your genius with the water community.  Robert C. Renner, Executive Director, Water Research Foundation, on plenary on Innovations in Finance, Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies, Environmental Management Conference, October 2014

I enjoyed your presentation during the Governing conference and I learned some things that I think can help us here at home.  Be safe and call if I can be of help.  Adrian Garcia, Harris County Sheriff, Houston, Texas, “The Cost of Resiliency: Infrastructure Planning and Resource Management,” Governing Magazine Forum, Newseum, September 24, 2014

Thank you! You got the crowd on their feet and excited about the River!  I’m glad and honored to work with you on these complex issues going forward.  Jim Foster,  Executive Director, Anacostia Watershed Society 25th Anniversary Celebration, September 22, 2014

Thank you for speaking at our BUGC (Building Up Greater Cleveland) Annual Meeting!  Your passionate talk on the importance of water & sewer investments was exceptional.  We are very appreciative!  Your friends at the Greater Cleveland Partnership, July 21, 2014

Thank you for speaking at our meeting and participating in the discussion!  You have not lost your touch – every time you opened your mouth, it was such a big help in terms of advancing our effort. I think the group really “gets it” now, in no small part due to your clear and convincing remarks.  Pete and I know how busy you are, and we both really
appreciated your taking the time.  Thank you!!  Chris Sturm, Senior Director of State Policy, NJ Future, Developing an Agenda for Change for NJ Urban Water Systems, Jersey City, New Jersey, May 21, 2014

On behalf of the National Wildlife Federation, thank you for joining us at our 2014 Annual Meeting and speaking to our organization.  Your address embodied the meeting’s theme, “Water: It connects us all,” and was inspiring to hear.  Deborah Spalding, Chair, NWF Board of Directors, May 3, 2014

On behalf of all who attended the recent CIFA Federal Policy Conference, I want to thank you for getting the day off to such a great start.  We have received quite positive feedback on the conference this year and most of it was centered on you.  I don’t think we have ever had a speaker who got folks so excited about what they do and who made them see the vital importance of their mission to bring clean water to communities across the country.  We learned a lot and enjoyed every minute of it.  Rick Farrell, Executive Director, Council of Infrastructure Financing Authorities, April 22, 2014

Thank you for your help in helping securing Mr. Hawkins as an Institute for Regional Excellence Lunchtime Guest Speaker today! The IRE Cohort 12 greatly appreciated having him as a guest speaker.  The class was inspired by his energy and leadership lessons!  Janet Ernst, Director, MWCOG, Institute for Regional Excellence, April 11, 2014

It was great to see you and get caught up at dinner Wednesday evening.  George,  your impact at DC Water and on our industry is truly transformational.  I am proud as heck to be able to work with you and your great organization!  Thank You!  Darin Thomas, Director of Management Consulting, Raftelis, Utility Management Conference Panel on Gaining Buy-in for Change, February 27, 2014

On February 11th, I had the opportunity to hear Mr. George Hawkins speak at the annual TN Society of Professional Engineers banquet…and I’ve never heard a more eloquent address. He emphasized the importance of water and how it’s truly undervalued in today’s society. Everyone in the audience was captivated by his address. I loved learning about the various crises (ie, Constitution Ave under 3 ft of water!) and how the engineers working for the city stepped in and saved the day.  I am studying biological engineering at the University of Tennessee, and as a young female engineer and I found his speech especially inspiring. I wish his speech was recorded so I could share it with my classmates. I didn’t realize just how “high-up” Mr. Hawkins was within the DC Water organization, but if this message can somehow be relayed to him I would really appreciate it. One day, I hope to work with someone who shares such a passion and love for what they do.  Alysse Ness, Student Engineer, Tennessee Society of Professional Engineers, February 11, 2014

The only mistake was I never saw your picture/ who you were and also was scared to ask who you were., due to what I went through at the first security entrance ( great security work), DC was obviously different from Warrensburg, MO. After my co-op I moved back to MO and in AZ now and only realizing NOW after seeing your picture( reading an article about your works in DC ) that our paths have crossed many times, You were too humble and down to earth to imagine you as the General Manager. Great Job Sir.  David Blighton, past contract employee, DC Water, email to GM about The Eagle Agenda, February 2014

Here is the really cool part of our meeting!  George Hawkins, who is General Manager of DC Water and Sewer Authority and is known nationally and actually, probably, worldwide, as an industry champion for water quality issues, is going to be our keynote speaker.  George has a unique ability to simply, but concisely, convey our message of water quality  to the public like no one I have ever heard before.  Mark Koester, President, New York Water Environment Association, 86th Annual Meeting, New York New York, February 4, 2014

I just wanted to thank you, once again, for such a tremendous presentation yesterday.  I had heard you speak before and knew what an electrifying speaker you are, but my colleagues were really blown away.   You are definitely a tremendous advocate for our industry, and for environmentalism as a whole.  We were very lucky to have you as our keynote speaker!  Andrew Kricun, P.E., BCEE, Executive Director, Chief Engineer, Camden County Muncipal Utilities Authority, SMART Stormwater Forum, Camden, NJ, January 30, 2014

It was very worthwhile for Commission members to learn firsthand of the challenges facing DC Water in handling the tremendous volumes of wastewater generated during storm events. The way you have embraced those challenges and turned them into opportunities, with unique wastewater storage and on-site energy generation was intriguing. The advancements you are making are commendable and the members were very impressed and fully engaged with all that you shared. We certainly left that afternoon with a greater appreciation of how human ingenuity can overcome seemingly insurmountable problems. You left us all energized!  Ann Pesiri Swanson, Executive Director, Chesapeake Bay Commission Meeting, January 9, 2014 

I wanted to extend my personal thanks to you for speaking at our event.  I don’t think our guests could have heard from a more informative speaker and I know you got some people thinking in new ways about DC Water.  I look forward to working with your team and you in the future.  Lynn Thorp, National Campaigns Director, Clean Water Action, Annual Meeting, December 2013

Thank you so much for coming all the way to Pittsburgh to participate in our Post Agenda hearing.  Your enthusiasm and leadership are fantastic and I think you really inspired our City Councilors.  We are so grateful for your support.  Jenny Rafanan Kennedy, Campaign Organizer, Pittsburgh United, November 21, 2013

Thank you again for presenting to our Network of Emerging Leaders in Sustainability group on Tuesday. It was insightful to hear about the work of a progressive water utility and some of the exciting projects under way at DC Water. Water is a key component to sustainability and it is vital to incorporate sustainability thinking into water projects.  Marina S. Moses, MS, DrPH, The National Academies, November 12, 2013

I came away from the event feeling pretty upbeat about the future, largely thanks to the site visit to DC Water’s Blue Plains wastewater treatment plant we had arranged for delegates at the end of the conference. It is a monster plant which is in the process of a $1 billion upgrade, which will include enhanced nutrient removal and sludge hydrolysis/anaerobic digestion.  The highlight of the visit was not so much the plant itself but DC Water’s innovation chief Sudhir Murthy. The man is a missionary for the wastewater technology revolution…Murthy is a protégé of general manager of DC Water, George Hawkins – one of the rock stars of the water utility sector. It is reassuring to see how good leadership can produce such highly motivated staff, who in turn have a transformative impact on the performance of the utility.  Christopher Gasson, Publisher, Global Water Intelligence on the American Water Summit, November 2013

Thank you for hitting a HOME RUN last week at the PMI Conference.  You were a real highlight.  I look forward to working with you to promote water efficiency.  Barbara Higgins, Executive Director, Plumbing Manufacturers International, October 15, 2013

I am deeply grateful for your passion and commitment not only to the water industry but to the environment as a whole. It was intriguing to hear the scope of what your past endeavors and experiences have allowed you to bring to our industry today. I am certain that we will be better because of your commitment, your curiosity and your enthusiasm for what we do as water professionals. I must tell you that although I took many notes throughout the conference, you, George Hawkins, all but commanded me to do so during that final Wed morning session. When you stood up, I knew I needed to listen and that in return, there would be things to learn. Thanks again for sharing your insights.  Marsha Meyer, Greenwood Metropolitan District, South Carolina, on WEFTEC, October 9, 2013

Thank you for your session at Aquarius this afternoon. From the feedback from our participants your session seems to have had a profound impact on their views.  I must add that you were certainly one of the best speakers that the Aquarius participants got to meet during their  4 day programme with us.  Flocy Joseph, Human Leadership Institute, Aquarius Program, Singapore, September 18, 2013

I introduced myself to you in the hallway at the recent Oregon ACWA conference, where you gave a compelling and well thought out speech on the Cleaner Water Act.  It was probably one of the better speeches I have heard at a conference, or heard in general for that matter.  Thank you for the refreshing perspective!  Matt Stouder, General Manager, Metropolitan Wastewater Management Commission, City of Springfield and Eugene, Oregon

Thanks so much for joining us in Oregon.  My people loved your presentation.  It was the highlight of the event.  Janet Gillaspie, Executive Director, Oregon Association of Clean Water Agencies, Annual Meeting, July 29, 2013

It was great to have you in Louisville this week.  I thought you provided great insight at the Leadership Forum meeting Greg conducted on Sunday and your presentation on Monday was very inspirational, relevant, and passionate.  Amber Halloran, Louisville Water 

Thank you again for making the trip to Kentucky for the water professionals conference. I have heard more positive comments on your speech than I can count! You helped take our conference to the next level and the talk was phenomenal. It was exactly what that group needed to hear. Thanks again,  Wes Snyder, President, KY/TN Water Environment Association, Tenth Annual Meeting, July 15, 2013

It was a great pleasure to meet you this morning at Green Building Alliance (I was the one who kept asking questions!), and I salute you for your deep commitment to intelligent, accessible, innovative, and strategic water and sewer management. I would like to meet with you either in Pittsburgh or in Washington, DC to continue the conversation if you have an hour or so to get
together.   Stephen A. Glassman, President and CEO, Design Center, Pittsburgh PA, May 14, 2013

You were a hit with our conference attendees last week! Thank you so much for taking the time to speak in Atlantic City. None of us will soon forget your straightforward message – your points about pride, inside/outside, economics, gray/green and the rest. You and DC Water are wonderful examples to AEA members.  Peggy Gallos, Executive Director, NJ Association of Environmental Authorities, Annual Meeting, March 18, 2013

What a pleasure it was to have you address the members of the Utility Executives Committee last Tuesday in NYC.  I received numerous comments on how your talk “hit home.”  Your enthusiasm is contagious, and your message brings into focus our unified “water is worth it” mission.  Keep up the good work, you’ve hit the hot button for us, and we are all lined up behind you!  Richard J. Lyons, Immediate Past President, New York Water Environment Association, Inc. February 14, 2013

Thanks again for participating in WEFTEC 2012.  You are the best thing that has happened to our world of water since the Clean Water Act was passed 40 years ago.  Your passion for clean water is contagious, and your vision is  inspiring.  I admire your  strong focus on customer service, it should be emulated by everyone in any line of work. Thanks for your impressive leadership, and for being such a vibrant voice for water.  Jeff Eger, Executive Director, Water Environment Federation, WEFTEC Utility of the Future Forum, October 3, 2012

 You were fantasmagorical, which means you were fantastic, amazing and magical all at the same time.  You inspired us with your enthusiasm.  And you spoke from the heart so that all would understand.  Most importantly, you understood, totally and completely, why our band of wonderful, crazy mountaineers does such important work.  And why we all work so hard.  And why I respect, admire and love our staff so much — and admire their work so deeply.  You understood completely, and then you made every single person in that huge room understand completely.  Bill Carmean, Chair of the Board, The Mountain Institute, Annual Gala, November 2011

Thank you so much for taking the time out of your very busy schedule to make the trip to Pittsburgh to serve as the keynote speaker for our Third State of the Watershed event.  We have received amazing positive feedback on all aspects of the event, but especially your remarks.  I am in awe of your ability to synthesize such a wide body of knowledge and experience into a talk delivered off-the-cuff, but even more so at your ability to inspire and motive people.  Brenda L. Smith, Executive Director, Nine Mile Run Watershed Association. September 2011

I wanted to send you a quick note to commend you for your truly inspirational comments during the H20 Open Forum at ACE last week.  Having been involved in our industry for the past 24 years,  I must tell you that I felt like standing up and cheering after your remarks.  I’ve believed for a long time that perhaps the biggest void that exists in our industry today is Leadership.  For too long those who have been “at point” leading our organizations have allowed themselves to become buried in the technical details of the day-to-day and have struggled to rise above and lead their organizations.  Your vision and leadership of DC Water is most impressive!  Darin H. Thomas, Raftelis Consulting

It was my honor and pleasure sitting in your key note session at ACE 11. Your passion to the water industry, vast knowledge, respectful leadership and energetic public speaking skills deeply impressed the audience. Thank you so much for the dedication to the water industry. We really need leaders like you to raise the voice of our industry.  Charlie Le, Southwest Regional R&D Lead, Water Research Foundation, Carolla Engineers.  AWWA ACE11 Conference, June 2011

Damn, my friend – you certainly can wake up a morning crowd.  Thank you for your participation in our “Water Unites Us” panel; you were not only on-point with your message, you were also brilliant.”  Katherine Luscher, Education Manager/River Rally Coordinator

What a perfect way to end it.  Hawkins, often seen as representing the “bad guys” in the water quality world laid it all out how there is no difference in the work being done, just a different set of tools.  I was moved by his frank discussion maybe more than anything I heard all weekend.  Center for Justice Blog.  National River Rally, June 14, 2011

Your presentation at WWEMA was amazing! You are a great leader for our country and I want to thank you for your leadership in our industry.  Zain Mahmood, President and CEO, Parkson, Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturer’s Association, Washington Week, April, 2011

On behalf IBM, I wanted to thank you very much for your enthusiastic participation in Pulse. In addition to people giving me positive feedback,  I was told that the web (twitter, blogosphere etc)  “lit up” after your comments on the panel.  Thanks to George’s panel comments during the General Session, your talk (which I delivered) was standing room only.  Arun Hampapur, PhD, IBM Distinguished Engineer, IBM PULSE, March 1, 2011

Thank you very much for delivering a stunning presentation at Barcelona.  It was clearly a hit – the audience received really valuable set of insights coupled with what must have been the most entertaining session of the entire event!
— Greg Milwid, IBM Software Group, IBM Smarter Cities, November 22, 2011

“Listening to DC Water General Manager George Hawkins talk about Blue Plains is to watch an artist talk about his studio, or to watch a salesman in his showroom. Hawkins loves talking about his work, and his mastery and command at the statistics and knowledge around the subject of water and wastewater pumping is deeply impressive. This isn’t a man doing a functionary job, this is a man who loves what he’s doing.”  We Love DC (Blog), November 10, 2010

Thank you so much for taking part in our American Water Summit out at Dulles last week. For me, and for most of the audience, you were the star of the whole event. Without articulate and passionate leaders such as yourself water utilities in America would be doomed to a cycle of neglect and despair.”  Christopher Gasson, Publisher, Global Water Intelligence

“I talked to most people who were with us at the water summit after your panel session; everyone felt your message was filled with substance, concise and so persuasive on what our nation faces. The data you offered in your speech was used over and over again by other panelists who took the podium after you left.”  Dr. Jey K. Jeyapalan, P.E.,

“Thank you for taking the time to participate in the 2-day conference held last week in the Washington DC area.Your presentation was impressive. Attendees are still talking about your speech.  It was one of the highlights of the conference.  You have an amazing talent when it comes to connecting with your audience. If you had decided to continue a legal career, you would have been a terrific courtroom attorney.  Congratulations on the wonderful work that you are doing in Washington DC.  Kathy Shandling, Executive Director, International Private Water Association, American Water Summit, November 3, 2010

Congratulations!  In my 40 years working in and being a student of District of Columbia Affairs, I have never seen a better news conference than your recent news conference announcing the name change with the Mayor and Chairman Willie.  I think it is fair to say that I have seen or participated in hundreds of news conferences concerning DC agencies and never have I witnessed one as dynamic, smart, relevant, democratic, inclusive and fun as your new branding EVENT — not just a news conference, but an event.  Wow!”
Bernard Demczuk, VP for Government Relations, George Washington University, June 30 , 2010

“Thank you for participating in the 2010 Watershed Summit, “What’s Next for Water Quality in PA?”  Your knowledge of strategy is greatly valued and on top of it — you are a lot of fun.  It is a pleasure to be working with you.”  John Dawes, Executive Director, Foundation of Pennsylvania Watersheds, May 2010

“Your welcoming address during the Policy Forum Welcome Breakfast was informative and NACWA’s members greatly appreciated learning more about the initiatives DC Water and Sewer Authority is pursuing as well as the many challenges you face in repairing and replacing the District’s aging underground water infrastructure.”  Ken Kirk, Executive Director, National Association of Clean Water Agencies. April 2010

“Thank you for devoting a Saturday to sharing your New Jersey experiences with the members of Maryland’s Tributary Teams.  There are certainly many, many parallels.  Your energy, enthusiasm, lessons learned and unique style of presentation were certainly the highlight of the meeting!  We greatly appreciate your continuing clear commitment to community building.”  Shari T. Wilson, Secretary, Maryland Department of the Environment, March 2010

“The information which you so generously share is truly significant and inspiring.  Your ability to present smart growth data to a diverse group and have them jump to their feet in applause warmed my heart!”  Lynda Strickler, Virginia Symposium, February 2010

“Thank you for speaking at the MD-DC Utility Association’s Environmental Conference on October 29 and serving as keynote speaker.  Your presentation on the District’s approach to its many responsibilities was interesting, intriguing, and entertaining.  Your style of delivery was perfect for the opening presentation and effective in stressing the importance of sustainability.”  Steven Fuchsluger, Chair, Environmental Committee, November 2009

“We were delighted that you were able to moderate our panel discussion, “What it Means to be Green,” held at the National Press Club.   Your facilitation of the panel discussion, in addition to your remarks on the District’s efforts to green the nation’s capital, sparked a lively and informative dialogue that continued throughout the week.  In particular, I would like to share with you that your infectious enthusiasm for the subject matter was a big hit with our delegates.”  Marcel Acosta, Executive Director, National Capital Planning Commission, October 2008

“Thank you so much for speaking at the Cambridge Plant & Garden Club Annual  Dinner.  You were insightful, entertaining and really got us thinking.  In fact, as a result of  your words I myself am going to try and join the City of Cambridge Planning Board…”  Maggie Booz, March 30, 2008

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