All Features

Behind-the-scenes stories about regional water issues, projects, and people.

Since the Water Authority’s formation in 1944, engineers have played a pivotal role in the establishment and growth of the agency and its commitment to delivering safe, reliable water supplies to San Diego County.

Water Authority Celebrates National Engineers Week

The San Diego County Water Authority is celebrating National Engineers Week, February 18-24, by highlighting the agency’s engineers and the important work they do. Since the Water Authority’s formation in 1944, engineers have played a pivotal role in the establishment and growth of the agency and its commitment to delivering safe, reliable water supplies to […]

The 2024 Women in Water Symposium welcomes everyone interested in exploring water and wastewater industry careers at all experience levels. Photo: San Diego County Water Authority

2024 Women in Water Conference Fosters Workforce Diversity

Registration is now open for the 2024 Women in Water Symposium. The event returns for its seventh year with a full-day event on Thursday, March 21, 2024, at Cuyamaca College. While open to all participants, the full-day, in-person program theme is “Empowering The Next Generation of Women.” It offers valuable opportunities for networking, education, and […]

Board members Mark Gracyk and Joel Scalzitti, Board Vice President Don McMillan, Lily Martinez, and Board President Kathleen Coates Hedberg. Scholarship programs throughout San Diego County and California for 2024 are now open. Photo: Helix Water District 2024 scholarhip applications

2024 Scholarship Applications Open for Aspiring Water Professionals 

Water agencies across San Diego County and California water associations offer multiple college scholarship opportunities in 2024 to help candidates secure their education as water and wastewater professionals. The acceleration of industry retirements, as well as the increasing need for a skilled workforce trained to implement new technologies, result in an increased effort to develop […]

Summer 2023 Citizens Water Academy participants tour Olivenhain Dam. Photo: San Diego County Water Authority

Applications Open for Spring 2024 Citizens Water Academy 

The San Diego County Water Authority is accepting applications for the Spring 2024 Citizens Water Academy class. In three class sessions, participants will learn firsthand about critical water issues affecting the region and go behind the scenes with water planners, managers, engineers, and other staff to gain a deeper understanding of the Water Authority’s life-sustaining […]

The winning landscape makeover using Nifty Fifty plant choices. Photo: City of Escondido

2024 Landscape Makeover Contest Open For Entries

The 2024 WaterSmart Landscape Makeover competition seeks the best in landscaping makeover projects from 12 participating San Diego County water agencies. This popular annual competition is now open for entries. Its goal is to showcase residential water-saving landscaping ideas, inspiring others to consider their own projects. Different approaches by the winning entrants from past years […]

Six San DIego County students will have their artwork featured in the annual "Water Is Life" calendar for 2024.

San Diego County Student Artwork Featured in 2024 Calendar

Six San Diego County student artists from four member water agencies are among the 37 Southern California students whose artwork will appear in the 2024 “Being Water Wise Is… ” Student Art Calendar. The “Being Water Wise Is… ” Student Art Calendar is produced annually by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California. It showcases […]

“Lights at the Lake” at the Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve features 100,000 lights and three dozen displays nightly through December 28. Photo: Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve holiday activities

San Diego Regional Reservoirs Offer Holiday Activities

Several of San Diego County’s most popular reservoir recreation areas offer special holiday events through 2023 and host winter activities during the region’s cooler months. Santee Lakes shows its holiday spirit Santee Lakes Recreation Preserve hosts the “Lights at the Lake” drive through holiday show through December 28. It features more than 100,000 lights and […]

(L to R) City of Escondido Environmental Programs team members Janin Rodarte, Emily Mixer, and Marielle Decker share the holiday spirit. Photo: City of Escondido holiday giving

Member Agencies Support Holiday Giving Programs

San Diego region’s water and wastewater agency employees pitched in to carry on a tradition of holiday giving in 2023 to benefit a wide array of nonprofit community services. Helix and Otay Water District Employees Feed A Need The Helix Water District employee volunteer program kicked off the giving season in October with a peanut […]

Dr. Malcolm Dunstan of MAD & Associates represents the team including the Water Authority at the award ceremony, MAD & Associates led the RCC mix design for the San Vicente Dam Raise project. Photo: International Commission on Large Dams

San Vicente Dam Raise Wins Global Award

The International Commission on Large Dams presented the San Diego County Water Authority this week with a prestigious international engineering award for its innovative construction technology used to raise the historic San Vicente Dam. The project helps ensure regional water security for generations to come. Commission leaders made the presentation to the Water Authority at […]

(L to R) Chuck Greely, CWEA president; Dan Denham, Water Authority General Manager; Mel Katz, Water Authority Board of Directors chairman; and Sue Mosburg, executive director of CA-NV-AWWA, with the Advanced Water Treatment Champion award at the November Board of Directors meeting. Photo: San Diego County Water Authority leadership in training

Water Authority Recognized For Leadership In Training Industry Professionals

The California Water Environment Association (CWEA) and the California-Nevada Section of the American Water Works Association (CA-NV AWWA) recognized the San Diego County Water Authority’s leadership and support of setting training standards and establishing training programs for water and wastewater industry professionals. Chuck Greely, president of CWEA, and Sue Mosburg, executive director of CA-NV-AWWA, presented […]

Helix Water District Board Vice President Dan McMillan with the Golden Watchdog Award given to the District's Tunnel Hill Tanks project. Photo: San Diego County Water Authority

Helix Water District Receives Golden Watchdog Award for Tunnel Hill Tanks Project

The Helix Water District received the 2023 San Diego County Taxpayers Association (SDCTA) Golden Watchdog Award in Municipal and Educational Services for the District’s Tunnel Hill tanks project. The project resulted in a $6.3 million cost savings for its customers. “It’s a mindset at Helix,” said Helix Water District Board Vice President Dan McMillan. “From […]

Wastewater Collection System Worker II Jesse Halbig explain how the crew put a remote camera into the sewer system to inspect the condition of the sewer pipes. Photo: Vallecitos Water District Water Academy

Vallecitos WD Water Academy Draws A Crowd

Vallecitos Water District (VWD) customers got a first-hand look at what it takes to operate their water and wastewater systems at a Water Academy Tour hosted on November 2. Forty-six customers participated in the day-long program. After being welcomed by VWD General Manager Glenn Pruim and Assistant General Manager James Gumpel with an overview of […]

Officials recognizing the Quantification Settlement Agreement 20th Anniversary (L to R): Jim Barrett, Coachella Valley Water District GM, Miguel Luna, Chair of the Legal and Claims Committee with the MWD Board, State Assemblyman David Alvarez (D-80), Water Authority GM Dan Denham, Colorado River Board of California Vice Chair and Water Authority board member Jim Madaffer, Water Authority Board Chair Mel Katz, Jamie Asbury, IID GM, MWD General Manager Adel Hagekhalil, IID GM Alex Cardenas. Photo: San Diego County Water Authority

Milestone Water Agreement Marks 20th Anniversary

San Diego County and Southern California water industry leaders commemorated the 20th anniversary of the 2003 Quantification Settlement Agreement (QSA), cited as a model of collaboration, relationship building, and voluntary conservation efforts among Southern California’s water agencies. The QSA is a historic set of water agreements enabling California to live within its Colorado River apportionment, […]

Rain barrels can capture rainfall for irrigation in your garden. Photo: National Audubon Society rain barrel rebates

Rain Barrel Rebates Timed for Rainy Season

With climatologists predicting the potential for above-average precipitation in the months ahead due to the El Niño weather phenomenon, it’s an ideal time to take advantage of the County of San Diego’s upcoming rainwater harvesting workshops and rain barrel rebates. The County’s Waterscape Rebate Program will host free rainwater harvesting workshops in Fall and Winter […]

Jeff Stephenson-Director of Water Resources-planning-San Diego County Water Authority

Jeff Stephenson is New Director of Water Resources for San Diego County Water Authority

Jeff Stephenson has been appointed director of water resources for the San Diego County Water Authority, where he leads the department responsible for regional water supply planning and long-term facilities planning. Stephenson brings more than 27 years of experience at the Water Authority to fill the position vacated by the department’s previous director, Kelley Gage, […]