Operations Challenge Pumps up the Action in Germany

Operations Challenge will take the action overseas as Team KSB-USA competes next week against 36 teams from six countries at the third Open German Championship in Wastewater Technology. Organized by the German Association for Water, Wastewater and Waste (DWA), the competition is a part of IFAT 2016–the world’s leading trade fair for water, sewage, waste and raw materials management–and will take place June 1-2 at the Trade Fair in Munich, Germany.

Modeled after the Water Environment Federation’s (WEF) award-winning Operations Challenge skills competition, which is held each year at WEFTEC (WEF’s annual technical exhibition and conference), DWA Championship participants will be judged in five core competencies of wastewater operations: work safety and protection of health; scheduled and unscheduled maintenance; instrumentation & control and operational monitoring; and process control. The overall winner will be determined based on the combined points of each individual discipline.

Sponsored by KSB, Inc., the U.S. team features an all-star line-up of past Operations Challenge winners from various parts of the country. Coach Dave Vogel (Lanesborough, Mass.)–a seasoned water professional who has participated in every competition since it began in 1988–will lead the following Team KSB-USA members: Dale Burrow (TRA CReWSers, Dallas, Tex., winner of 5 Division 1 Operations Challenge Championships); Donnie Cagle (Terminal Velocity, Wake Forest, N.C., winner of 10 Division 1 Operations Challenge Championships); and Steve Motley (Terminal Velocity, Virginia Beach, Va., winner of 5 Division 1 Operations Challenge Championships).

As a show of international sportsmanship, two German teams participated last year at Operations Challenge 2015 in Chicago, Ill., and Team KSB-USA is reciprocating with next week’s appearance – marking the first time both countries have participated at the respective competitions.

“We are extremely pleased with the composition of this team of talented water quality professionals that will represent WEF and the United States at this global event,” said WEF Executive Director Eileen O’Neill. “I thank KSB, Inc. for their support of our core mission of connecting and enriching the expertise of water professionals. This kind of cross-cultural, peer-to-peer mentoring of operations personnel is invaluable to the industry.”

In addition to Team KSB-USA, WEF will have a strong presence at IFAT 2016, which takes place from May 30-June 3. Other notable events include a “Women in the Water Industry – What’s it like in America?” lecture from O’Neill; a “Great Water Cities: Challenges of Tomorrow” panel discussion featuring WEF President Paul Bowen; and participation in the Young Water Professionals program activities and presentations.