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Technical Sessions

The technical program is the most respected and competitive educational program of its kind featuring over 900 speakers. The program is put together by over 230 topical experts in the Program Committee using a highly rigorous selection process ensuring a high quality program.  Just over 50% of submissions are accepted.  If it is related to water quality or quantity, it is at WEFTEC.

Sessions are made up of presentations by individuals or panels, and all sessions have opportunities for questions and discussions. 

WEFTEC 2015 Topic Grid (PDF)


WEFTEC Orientation: Getting The Most From Your Time 


Don’t miss the webinar on Thursday, September 10 from 3:30 pm – 4:30 pm Eastern to help you prepare.  Whether you have already registered or you just want to see what WEFTEC has to offer, this webcast will give you an overview of the networking, education, and exhibits. The world’s largest water quality event has so much to offer, use this webcast to plan your experience and make the most of your personal investment of time and resources. Click here to register. 


WEFTEC Featured Speakers 


Monday, September 28; 7:15 am – 8:30 AM
Admission: $37/person
Speaker: Catherine O’Connor, Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (District) 
 The AAEES/AIDIS/WEF Breakfast is a celebration of the environmental scientists and engineers in the industry. This year, the keynote presentation will be given by Catherine O’Connor, Director of Engineering for the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (District). The Engineering Department is responsible for planning, design and construction of projects prioritized in the Capital Improvement Program and projects in the Stormwater Management Program. She is actively involved in the efforts to transform District operations from waste treatment to resource recovery operations, particularly with implementation of enhanced biological phosphorus removal coupled with phosphorus recovery, which is the main focus of her presentation -- “Recovering Resources, Transforming Water – Phosphorus Recovery and Other Sustainability Initiatives at Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago.”
Ms. O’Connor has worked on other resource recovery initiatives including water reuse, waste-to-energy initiatives, and methane utilization projects. She is a licensed professional engineer in the state of Illinois and has earned a Doctoral degree in Environmental Engineering from Illinois Institute of Technology.

Monday, September 28; 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm
Admission: $40/person 
Speaker: Peter Vanrolleghem, Ph.D., Universite Laval 
Dr. Vanrolleghem’s specialty is modeling, monitoring, and the control of water systems. He has an MSc in Bio-engineering (1987), and a Ph.D. in Applied Biological Sciences – Environmental Technology (1994), both from Ghent University (Belgium). His Ph.D. dealt with monitoring, modeling and control of activated sludge processes, with special emphasis on model calibration and experimental design. Since 2006, he holds the Canada Research Chair on Water Quality Modeling, allowing him to start up the model EAU research group at Université Laval in Quebec City (Canada).

Monday, September 28; 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm
Admission: $20/person
Speaker: Antonio Riley, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 
Antonio Riley, regional administrator, HUD Midwest, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, will discuss how the Neighborhood Stabilization Program supports green infrastructure and HUD’s collaboration with other federal agencies on resilience and water infrastructure.

Monday, September 28; 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm
LECTURE | Aerobic Granular Sludge: Development and Experiences 
Given by: Mark van Loosdrecht, Ph.D., Delft University of Technology 
Dr. van Loosdrecht’s scientific interests are related to biofilm processes, nutrient conversion processes and the role of storage polymers in microbial ecology. In particular, his research has focused on new processes related to wastewater treatment and resource recovery, and has resulted in several processes currently applied in full scale such as the Sharon process, Anammox process and Nereda process. He is an active member of the International Water Association (IWA) and past chairman of the Biofilm and the Nutrient removal specialist groups. He is Editor-in-Chief of Water Research, and has obtained several prizes for his work, including the Lee Kuan Yew Singapore Water Prize and the IWA Grand Award. He is member of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), the Dutch Academy of Engineering (AcTI), the US Nat. Ac. Of Engineering (NAE), and was awarded a knighthood in the order of the Dutch Lion.

RESPONSE | Utility Considerations 
Given by: Jim McQuarrie, Metro Wastewater Reclamation District of Denver 
Jim McQuarries’ focus on innovation in operating practices as well as emerging technologies offers a utility’s perspective on how well current research is responding to the needs of our industry and how utilities should embrace their role in the cycling of innovation. It is through such relationships that utilities best position themselves to efficiently meet the long-term needs of the communities they serve.

Tuesday, September 29; 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm
Admission: $20/person
Speaker: Phil Hubbard, PE, Hampton Roads Sanitation District 
Phil Hubbard, Hampton Roads Sanitation District, will present “One Billion Reasons for Regionalization” at this year’s luncheon.  Join fellow collection systems professionals to network and hear this fascinating story about the process and reasoning involved in their journey toward regionalization.  With this hot topic on many people’s minds, Phil’s story can lend some very interesting insight and ideas.

Wednesday, September 30; 7:30 am – 9:00 am
Admission: $37/person
Limited seating to allow facilitated discussion. 
Informing, connecting, and inspiring current and future female water sector leaders 
Science, technology, engineering, and math historically have attracted fewer women; the water sector is no exception. But with more women rising to top leadership positions in consulting, at utilities, and in academia, as well as attending and presenting at WEFTEC, it cannot be ignored that women are more boldly making their mark in the world of water. This inaugural event welcomes women from a variety of disciplines – engineering, operations, research, management, and communications – for peer-to-peer networking and provides an environment for sharing successes and discussing challenges faced both professionally and personally.
Moderators: Karen Pallansch, Chief Executive Officer, Alexandria Renew and Sandra Ralston, Principal, Consensus LLC
Keynote Speaker:  Debra Shore, Commissioner, Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago
Roundtable Discussion Facilitators 
Cathy Gerali, District Manager, Denver Metropolitan Wastewater District
Nancy Love, Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Michigan (invited)
Eileen O’Neill, Executive Director, Water Environment Federation
Mariyana Spyropoulos, President of the Board of Commissioners, MWRDGC
Cindy Wallis-Lage, Water Group President, Black and Veatch



Start Getting the ‘Go Ahead’  

Due to reduced budgets and increased expenditure scrutiny, WEFTEC recognizes it is no easy task to secure approval for a training event. Check out these Employer Approval Tips to help guide your request to attend WEFTEC 2015.