International Desalination Association establishes honorary council

The Board of Directors of the International Desalination Association (IDA) has named seven prominent members of the global desalination and water reuse community as its Honorary Council.

“Among IDA’s great strengths are the commitment of its membership to serve the Association and the depth of their industry experience and knowledge. The IDA Honorary Council is a recognition of notable individuals who have devoted their time to the Association and who have distinguished themselves in the field of desalination and advanced water treatment solutions. They bring an extraordinary level of longstanding insight of the global industry. Through the support of the Honorary Council members, who will act as ambassadors for the Association, IDA will intensify the engagement with the world’s policymakers to help ensure sustainable solutions to growing water scarcity challenges,” said Shannon McCarthy, IDA Secretary General.

The IDA Board of Directors is pleased to welcome the distinguished members for the 2017-2019 term:

Dr. Jim Birkett: Dr. Birkett’s admirable career includes more than 50 years’ experience in the study of desalination, advanced water treatment, and membrane separation industries and technologies with Arthur D. Little and West Neck Strategies. He is a Past President and Director of IDA, recipient of IDA Lifetime Achievement Award, and former editor of “The IDA Journal on Desalination and Water Reuse”.

Eng. Ghassan Ejjeh: Past President and Director of the IDA, and great advocate of its activities, especially in water reuse. He is highly regarded as a business leader, responsible for the expansion of BESIX activities into Water and Concessions. His career included serving as Senior Vice President of BESIX, Director of Six Construct UAE, BESIX SANOTEC SA, Ajman Private Sewage Company, as well as Safi water. He is member of Technical Working Group- Nuclear Desalination in the IAEA Vienna, and Vice Chairman of the Arab, Belgian, Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce.

Dr. David Furukawa: Past President and Director of IDA, Dr. Furukawa is a highly respected member of the global desalination community for more than 50 years. Dr. Furukawa was formerly Head of Desalination Research at the Bureau of Reclamation, Manager of Research at Havens International / Calgon-Havens / UOP Fluid Systems; Vice President – Marketing for FilmTec Corporation/Dow Chemical Corporation; independent consultant; and Chief Scientific Officer for the National Centre of Excellence in Desalination – Australia.

Dr. Emilio Gabbrielli: Past IDA President and the current Comptroller of IDA, Dr. Gabbrielli is Director, Overseas Business Development, Global Sales Water Treatment for Toray. His internationally renowned career includes serving as Managing Director of Thames Water in Brazil and Executive Secretary of the Global Water Partnership, an international network of institutions. Dr. Gabbrielli is also a Global Ambassador of the Australian Water Association.

Eng. Mutaz Ghandour: A past Director of IDA, Eng. Ghandour is known for his strong leadership, business acumen and longevity as Chairman and CEO of Metito Holdings Ltd. Mr. Ghandour also serves as Goodwill Ambassador to The UN Intergovernmental Institution for Combating Malnutrition. He is also a Permanent International Observer to The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

Dr. Masura Kurihara: Dr. Kurihara is widely recognised for his great contributions in the fields of desalination and water reuse. He is Senior Scientific Director of “Mega-ton Water System”, Funding Program for World Leading Innovation R&D on Science & Technology, Japan, and a Fellow of Toray Industries, Inc. A former IDA Director, he is the recipient of the IDA Lifetime Achievement Award and has also been honoured with two Presidential Awards from IDA.

H.E. Fouad Makhzoumi: Past President and Director of IDA, H.E. Makhzoumi founded Future Pipe Industries in 1984 and has served as its Executive Chairman since 2003. As a Member of Parliament in the Lebanese Government, he is actively promoting change in governance and democracy. A prominent figure across business and political circles, his key accomplishments include, being appointed a Commander of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Italy, acting as Vice Chairman of the Institute for Social and Economic Policy in the Middle East at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and co-chairing the Executive Committee of the International Board of the U.S. / Middle East Project.

In 2016, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the Lebanese American University. In addition to his business leadership and success, in 1997 he founded the Makhzoumi Foundation, which contributes vocational training, health care and micro-credit programs working on all 17 SDGs for the Lebanese civil society development and empowerment.

Eng. José Antonio Medina: Engineer Medina served the IDA as President and was a Director of Association. He is from Spain and has also served as the President of AEDyR. He has been a desalination engineer since 1995 and a well-known desalination lecturer in the Universities of Madrid, Alicante, Mexico, and Cuyo. Eng. Medina is well known for his technical expertise and leadership.

The International Desalination Association is a non-profit association that serves more than 2,600 core members in 60 countries and reaches an additional 4,000 affiliate members. Its membership comprises scientists, end-users, engineers, consultants and researchers from governments, corporations and academia. IDA is associated with the United Nations as part of a growing international network of non-governmental organizations (NGOs).