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Water Reach

Committee Leadership 

Scott Shirley
Chair
Western Virginia Water Authority
Scott.Shirley@westernvawater.org
540-283-8270 

Phill Yi
Hazen and Sawyer
Board Liaison
703-267-2757
pyi@hazenandsawyer.com

 The mission of the Water Reach Committee is to support safe drinking water and proper sanitation to communities throughout Virginia. The Committee volunteers include utility directors, engineers, operators, groundwater specialists, permit specialists, professors, students and others who are dedicated to this mission.  Funding raised by the Water Reach Committee is used to support projects in Virginia in cases where there are limited resources available to address needed activities/improvements. 

 Example of successful past projects of the Water Reach committee include:

Tangier Island: Located in the Chesapeake Bay, the island has a dwindling population of about 600 people. Over the past decade, the committee has assisted the Town of Tangier in obtaining a grant to assess water and wastewater needs and has provided the town with technical assistance in grants management, project management, and contract administration. 

Mineral Virginia: The town is located near Lake Anna approximately 40 miles northwest of Richmond with a population of just over 400 people. The sanitary sewer system includes approximately 85 manholes, 18,400 linear feet of sanitary sewer and 2 pump stations. The sewer system is experiencing heavy inflow and infiltration (I/I) during rainfall events and this is leading to high monthly sewer treatment bills and potential capacity issues. Under the leadership of the project champion, Jeff Kapinos, the committee provided technical advice and secured an acoustic inspection of the Mineral sewer system. Currently, the town has hired a consultant to assist them in solving their I/I issues. The committee will continue to serve as a technical representative for the community.

The Committee is working with the Virginia Department of Health and the Department of Environmental Quality and other stakeholders to identify areas where the Committee can assist.  If you have any interest in participating in the committee or know of a community in need of assistance, please contact the committee leadership.

If you are considering volunteering, you likely want to know what specific actions are performed to assist communities.  The committee does not currently provide design services but can help in many other ways: 

  • Search for funding sources to support construction / inspection efforts
  • Fundraise for smaller efforts; We host a silent auction every year at WaterJAM.
  • Act as owner agent for the communities
  • Provide technical guidance
  • Assist with permit applications
  • Hands-on work (e.g. minor equipment issues, etc.)

The committee affords a great volunteer opportunity to make a direct and demonstrable improvement to improve water utility services in Virginia.  




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