Washington Water’s Paul Robischon was honored with the Lifetime Achievement award by the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) at a ceremony today, held in conjunction with Drinking Water Week. Robischon, who started his career with the utility in 1977, managed operations for Washington Water’s southwest region until his retirement in February 2019.
Drinking Water Week is an annual initiative of the American Water Works Association and is observed May 5–11, 2019. The Drinking Water Week Lifetime Achievement award is given to operators who do an outstanding job over their careers to provide safe and reliable drinking water to their customers.
According to the DOH, Robischon’s career was marked by serving, teaching, and mentoring others in the water industry. During his tenure at Washington Water, Paul initiated and developed many new ideas and solutions for improving efficiency of operations, customer service, and water quality. For example, he developed a test method for locating and sealing areas in concrete storage tanks that could potentially become a pathway for intrusion, thereby protecting the quality of the stored water. Paul was also acknowledged by DOH for his commitment to safety, having developed a process for sanitizing storage tanks that was environmentally friendly and minimized worker exposure.
“Protecting our customers’ and our employees’ health and safety is our top priority, and Paul spent his career identifying and mitigating potential risks, managing efficient operations, and ensuring that our customers had access to a safe and reliable water supply around the clock,” said Martin A. Kropelnicki, President and CEO of Washington Water. “Paul is an excellent leader who cares deeply about his customers, communities, friends, and family, and I am grateful for his legacy of service at Washington Water.”
This is the third time the DOH has formally acknowledged Washington Water and its staff in recent years. Last year, Water Quality Manager Carol Schlender was presented with the Drinking Water Week Commitment to Excellence award, and the DOH previously presented the utility with the Grace Under Pressure award.