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Who We Are
Fort Collins Utilities provides four utility services: electricity, stormwater, water and wastewater. As a community-owned utility, community members have a voice in how their utility services are provided. Utilities has been built to offer distinct community benefits:
- lower rates and revenues that stay in Fort Collins
- local decision-making that determines how services are provided
- not-for-profit operations that ensure customer payments are reinvested directly in utilities day-to-day operations and infrastructure upgrades
- a focus on responsive customer service and community values
Fort Collins Utilities staff take great pride in and are dedicated to the work they do: providing reliable, high-quality electricity and water services 24 hours/day, seven days/week, 365 days/year.
Fort Collins Utilities Leadership
Theresa Connor, Interim Executive Director
Theresa Connor joined the City of Fort Collins in 2018. Theresa started her career as a survey assistant and was immediately hooked by the impact this line of work has on people’s lives. “I work with dedicated people, doing work that makes a difference. Delivering water, removing wastewater and managing stormwater runoff 24/7/365 is complex. My team is committed to delivering excellent service and keeping our community humming.”
- Kevin Gertig, Former Executive Director
After studying water and wastewater in high school, Kevin Gertig began his progressive 40+-year career with a small utility in Colorado before spending time outside of Denver at a new water treatment facility. In 1982, Kevin joined Fort Collins Utilities, working at Gateway Park (the old Water Treatment Plant #1). Kevin earned a degree in Environmental Health from Colorado State University (Go Rams!). He was executive director from 2015-2020.
“We provide our community with four essential services 24/7/365. Many of our employees work around the clock to deliver safe, quality, reliable and affordable utility services. I love that each day is something different – the diversity of the work we do is noteworthy! With such a diverse group of people and work, it can be difficult to connect with everyone, but I strive to get to know each staff member. I believe I work with the most magnificent group of professionals on earth. We continually apply improvements to each utility. Our staff use best-in-class benchmarks and excel at improving our services.”
Matt Fater, interim deputy director for water engineering, joined the City in 1995. He has since served in many engineering roles, including most recently director of civil engineering. “I’ve been interested in water since I was a kid playing in creeks or witnessing the devastation of a flood. I love this field because it’s a basic service the community depends on daily. We look for the best long-term solutions for our customers. A lot of planning and design goes into constructing our water system so we can provide high-quality service to our customers.”
Andrew Gingerich, interim deputy director of water field operations, joined the City in 2013 so that he could combine his professional life with his desire to serve our community. “I love seeing the direct impact our day-to-day field operations have on the services we provide. I get a chill down my spine as I watch dozens of crew trucks and machinery leave everyday to keep our systems running. I’m impressed with our frontline staff who push pause on their personal lives and families to keep water flowing and sewers draining 24/7/365.”
Tim McCollough, deputy director of Light and Power, joined the City in 2015. His career in the industry began right out of college. “I love public power and working for a utility committed to serving our customers directly. We have a long-term view of the future of our utility. What’s best for our customers, along with quality and reliability, drive our decisions. Placing the electric system underground in the ‘80s ensured quality, reliable service and financial savings today. I’m honored to be part of a forward-thinking organization that has put so much planning into how we operate.”
Lance Smith, director of Utility Financial Operations, has more than 20 years of experience in utility finance and has been involved in financial analysis and modeling his whole career. He has been with the City since 2011. Lance loves being a steward of the community’s assets. “I am passionate about Fort Collins Utilities striving for equity and being fiscally prudent. My team’s integrity is beyond question. As a municipal utility, our goal isn’t to generate profits – any rate adjustments are driven by increased costs in delivering high-quality and reliable services.”
Gretchen Stanford, interim deputy director of Customer Connections has been with Utilities for two years, with 15+ years of experience in the industry. “I am passionate about ensuring customers have a voice and challenging government to uphold the values of a municipal utility. I am very proud of our team and the dedication and passion of each employee. I'm in awe by their resilience and creativity. We want two-way communication between our community and our staff, who work to engage and educate customers on the programs we provide. We’re here to help."
- Customer Connections Profiles
Meet Mariel Miller, Water Conservation Specialist
My focus is the residential side of our water conservation programs. For example, I manage the Sprinkler Audit Program, residential rebates and work to enhance water efficiency through other programs and policies. I really enjoy the Sprinkler Audit Program because it enables me to work closely with the interns, get out in the community and interact directly with customers. Over the last 20 years, Utilities has performed approximately 6,000 audits, which help customers use less water and use water more efficiently. Water is one of our most undervalued resources and it is hard to imagine a day without it. Every aspect of our life involves water, from health and safety to recreation and aesthetics. It is a vital resource and there is great opportunity to reduce use without impacting quality of life. Bringing awareness to the value of water and helping find that balance is what drives me. When I’m not at work, you’ll find me spending time with my family. We love to mountain bike, hike, ski and enjoy exploring the Poudre River and Horsetooth Reservoir areas.
Kirk Longstein, Energy Service Project Manager
My first internship while attending CSU was at Utilities where I helped administer the Poudre River Ecology Program. I’m excited to be back where I learned so much about the importance of environmental stewardship. Since 2016, I’ve focused on reaching out to community groups, businesses and individuals who may benefit from the Building Energy Scoring initiative. The intent is to create a program that promotes energy efficiency investments by leveraging the City's rebates and available finance tools. We will also develop materials for real estate professionals that differentiate buildings with low utility costs and improved net operating income. Learning from other communities, we plan to utilize building utility data and then generate an Energy Star® score in Portfolio Manager and then take that information and make it easily usable. Owners can promote their building performance scores and efficiency features for potential buyers. Tenants will have the opportunity to select from options with the lowest operating costs. We take our proposal to City Council on Tues., Nov. 20. When I’m not at work you might find me walking the Poudre River Trail with my wife and two-year-old puppy, checking out breweries, music or hitting the hiking trails. Fort Collins has so much to offer and I love being a part of this community.
Kelsey Doan, Resource Conservation Program Specialist
I started at Utilities over eight years ago as a ClimateWise intern, and now my role is the Interim ClimateWise Program Manager, which is a great fit. I love helping local businesses reduce their impact and save money because I feel like I'm making a difference in the community. Energy and water conservation is not our only focus. ClimateWise is a one-stop shop for all business sustainability needs, including waste reduction, alternative transportation and social responsibility. We equip Fort Collins businesses with best management practices to help reduce their use and foster more sustainable habits. I enjoy having one-on-one conversations about the challenges and barriers businesses are experiencing and helping them work toward a solution. The program contributes to the Climate Action Plan and the overall health of our community, and I love being a part of that. Away from work, I love to run and spend time with my family. I also enjoy cooking, especially when I get to create and experiment with ingredients and fill my house with great smells.
Leland Keller, Energy Services Engineer
I have been in the energy efficiency field since 1992 and joined the Utilities team in July 2017. I manage the residential solar rebate program, the community solar program, income qualified PV grants and the distributed battery storage pilot program. Making a direct impact in my own community is such a driving force for me. I feel fortunate to work with an extremely talented team of professionals that care about what they are doing and are all equally committed to department goals related to the Climate Action Plan and the Energy Policy. As public stewards, it is our job to guide policy and to educate people to make informed decisions about energy use. We can’t solve all the world’s problems today. However, we are so very privileged to be in a community where there is a very high level of awareness on the actions that need to be taken. I feel blessed to be on a team that shares that sense of responsibility and intention. I love cycling, backpacking, hiking, rafting, skiing, pretty much anything outdoors. My wife is a massage therapist and a forest therapist, so we spend a lot of time enjoying the beautiful area we live in.
Jenne Loffer, Sr. Customer Service Supervisor
I have been with Utilities for a couple years now and I am proud to be a part of the customer service team. It’s in my nature to help people and I really enjoy working with my team to improve each day. We strive to serve the community with exceptional customer service, whether it’s face-to-face, online or over the phone. Sometimes we have customers call in that have had something happen like a car accident, hospital stay or job loss and they cannot pay their bill. I feel like I’m making a difference when I’m able to connect them with assistance to keep the water and electricity on. It’s great that the City has programs like the Payment Assistance Fund and the Income-Qualified Assistance Program to help those in need locally. We can also point them in the right direction to learn more about other resources that may be available, like LEAP and Energy Outreach Colorado. When I’m not at work, I love spending time with my family. I have five children and five grandkids. It’s really fun to be a part of their life. I also really enjoy running and set a goal to run a half marathon in every state.
Eric Kossoris, Communications Coordinator
I like to serve the public, by getting the message out about a program, project or issue. I’m providing a service and recognizing a need within my own community. That feels very rewarding to me. I had the opportunity to play a big role in the revamping of the Xeriscape program. It’s fun to see customers directly benefitting from changes that I helped implement. I like technology and I like to solve problems. One of my favorite things to do is to assess a problem, figure out the needs for the various audiences in our community and come up with a solution that allows people to access information and participate in our programs in the most user-friendly way. Behind all of Utilities' programs there is a person helping to communicate about them and there are a lot of programs. If we don’t get the word out about them it is a loss for the community. It’s our role to identify the different groups and audiences that will benefit from this information and it’s our responsibility to ensure that we are delivering that information in the way that they would like to receive it. I feel lucky that there is such a wide diversity of projects to work on and great people to work with. I love to be creative. Outside of work I love to be outside, I love to play sports – flag football, climbing, snowboarding, soccer. Ultimate frisbee is the next thing I’d like to get involved in.
Heather Young – Education Supervisor
I love working for a local government. We all have the common value of serving our community. Everyone here is committed to being good stewards of public resources and to make sure that community members have a voice. Education is a great way to connect individually with people about the things that they care about - whether it’s conservation, water or energy use. Our programs are driven by the audience and can look a lot of different ways. My team is exploring more innovative models by working with stakeholders and forming partnerships to support new audiences. We have a lot of flexibility to incorporate what people are interested in with what’s going on at Utilities. We bring it all together to create something that’s engaging and exciting to participate in. For example, we have partnered with the Recreation Department to take a group up near Lake Zimmerman and Joe Wright Reservoir to snowshoe the snowpack. We are excited about this opportunity to teach participants how snowpack conditions directly impact our drinking water supply. Outside of work I like hiking, camping and backpacking. I also love spending time with my husband, our two dogs and cat.
Kelly Doyle, Water Conservation Assistant
My favorite part of my job is helping Utilities customer save water. It really is a unique aspect that this utility offers. It’s really rewarding knowing that my work is going directly toward helping customers and toward helping Utilities meet goals for water savings in our community. Education plays such a huge role in what we do with all of our programs. We are working daily to help people understand about our water supply, our watershed, treatment process and how we protect the Poudre River. It’s all tied together from the construction crews in the field, to our scientists measuring snowpack and even to the toilets in our homes – if those are not efficient or leaking, that’s water that is being lost from our community.
When I call someone I let them know about the water use I’m seeing and often their initial reaction is concern, especially if they’re not at home, they’ll be worried that they’ll be coming home to significant damage. But most often, these leaks are contained – it’ll be a leaking toilet or a leak in their irrigation system. I then help them troubleshoot and find what might be causing the leak. It’s rewarding to walk them through all of the options and to help them successfully find the leak and fix the problem.
When I’m not helping find leaks, I snowshoe, love hiking in any season, yoga and exploring Fort Collins – there’s always something new to discover here.
Selina Gonzales, Business Support III
I’ve been coined the office mom. I think that’s fitting because I thoroughly enjoy helping make everyone's job easier. Give me databases and let me create spreadsheets and I’ll figure out how to do get your project done. In fact, the most exciting thing for me is a blank spreadsheet. My favorite part of my job is the people. Everyone here at Utilities works hard and is committed to providing the best solutions for our City. I love playing a small part in the big picture planning that takes place day in and day out. Fort Collins is an innovative City. As a proud mother and grandmother, it gives me great satisfaction to know that Fort Collins is already planning for the next 25, 50 and 100 years.
Pete Iengo, Sr. Public Engagement Specialist
I started as a volunteer with the City and was tasked with developing the social responsibility program. Looking back, I feel like I’ve come full circle. I'm now the Volunteer Program Coordinator for Utilities and today, nearly four years later, we have multiple affordability programs designed to help our more vulnerable population. Affordability and social issues can be complex and one of the most important things I’ve learned is to be genuine. Whether I’m training and mentoring new volunteers or talking on the phone to individuals that really need someone to listen, I feel like I’m making a difference. I hope that people understand that we want to help as many people as we can through our affordability programs. Talking with individuals that directly benefit from our services helps keep me grounded. I love helping people that really need it.
- Light and Power Profiles
Dennis Sullivan, Electric Lineworker
I’m originally from southern California, I lived on the western slope before going to line school in Washington. We love Colorado and all that it has to offer and knew that this is the place we wanted to end up and where we wanted to raise our family. I come from a big family, I have nine brothers and sisters. I have four kids of my own – three girls and one boy. I loved growing up as part of a big family and am so happy to be able to give my own children that same experience. I enjoy the constant variety in my job, as a groundworker I rotate crews every month so I get to see a wide scope of the work that is done in Light & Power. I get to be around a lot of different people and do a lot of different jobs, I enjoy and appreciate the variety and changes in my everyday tasks. Something that has really struck me about the Light & Power group here is the camaraderie. It really feels like a big family, everybody seems to like and take pride in what they do, we look out for each other and support each other. We care about the work we do and we care about having the best results for the community with the least impact. We live here too, and we want the projects we do to work well for everyone. When I’m not at work I love hiking with my family, playing basketball and I’m currently in the process of getting hunter safety certified.
Jameson Jauken, Electric Lineworker
I started as a groundworker and now I’m an apprentice. Most lineworkers are trained in overhead electric lines at line school. We are unique in that 99% of our electric infrastructure is underground. This means there is a lot of training on the job. I am part of the preventative maintenance crew and our main responsibility is to catalogue the equipment, perform amp checks and check cable dates. For example, if we start seeing a product from a certain manufacturer that continues to fail, we go into our system and start monitoring it. Then, we replace it before it fails.
I enjoy being part of a team and learning from different perspectives. Each person has a different way of doing things and it helps me learn what works best for me. I value all the training we do as processes change; equipment is improved, and technology is upgraded. I also really enjoy responding to power outages and the troubleshooting required to figure out the problem. It makes me feel like I’m part of something meaningful. We know how much our customers appreciate when the power is restored quickly. Providing safe, reliable electricity to customers is our number one goal.
I am from the area and I enjoy spending time with my family when I’m not at work, including my white, fluffy cat. My wife and I enjoy checking out wineries and breweries. We also really enjoy music festivals.
Cheryl Wagner, Business Support II
Whatever the Electric Field Services group needs, I make it happen. From helping the crews with computers and daily reports to scheduling safety classes and ordering equipment, they keep me on my toes. Each day is different, and I like to think I’m prepared for anything, which is why I keep a hammer, buttons and sticky notes in my desk. I feel like I am the MOM – master of mayhem. I hope people would say that I’m easily accessible and that they know I’m always there to help. I have an appreciation for the tough, dangerous job that our crews do 24/7. I don’t think most people realize all that goes into setting up electric service or the magnitude of the projects. Although I’m not in the field, I feel fortunate to work with such an outstanding group that goes over and above to provide safe, reliable power. Other areas I really enjoy are leading the United Way campaign, the Food Drive and being a part of the CitySafe program. Also, I am involved with the banners that are hung downtown and Art in Public Places, where I help to approve the proposed artwork, create the safety labels and artist information. Outside of work, I enjoy time with my family and we try to get outdoors as much as possible. We love to camp at Red Feather Lakes where we fish, hike and take out the kayaks. On Sundays this time of year, you’ll find me cheering on the Packers.
Lou Cordova, Jr., Electric Distribution High Voltage Manager
I have been fortunate to work for Utilities for over 35 years now. It feels like I was destined to be here since I grew up two blocks down the street from the Service Center. Also, my dad started working at the City in 1968 until he retired as the water house supervisor. The longevity is neat about this group. You see a lot of people make it a lifetime career. Not a lot of organizations have that kind of dedication deeply ingrained as part of the culture. I was hired as a Line Groundworker and worked my way up to Supervisory Crew Chief. We take pride in serving the community. If there’s an outage, we’re ready to make it right as quickly and as safely as we can. Our group also values serving other communities during times of need. For example, we helped Estes Park restore power after the 2013 Flood and Windsor after the tornado. I am passionate about disaster relief and spend a lot of time volunteering outside of work with my church. We went to Ponce, Puerto Rico to assist with disaster relief. It was a wonderful experience rebuilding houses and helping people. I also helped after Hurricane Katrina. When I’m not at work, I love to spend time with my grandkids.
Jim Spaulding, Electrical Engineer III
I am a part of the Standards Engineering team that specifies the materials used for our electric infrastructure, from the transformers and switch gear, all the way down to the connectors for cables. If there is an equipment failure, Light & Power crews bring the materials into the lab and we perform an analysis. The process is like a forensic analysis, to determine the root cause of the failure and document the information. Then, we can figure out if similar materials manufactured in the same year are having issues. The equipment that is commonly replaced is switch gear, transformers and primary cable. We establish trends to identify areas of infrastructure that can be preemptively replaced before the equipment fails. Then, we work closely with the crews to perform maintenance and come up with a solution that works for them in the field. One of my favorite things about my job is helping solve problems and offering solutions that really work best for all involved. Outside of work, I love playing soccer, boxing and playing music. I love spending time with my family too.
Stephanie Himmelberg, Electric Meter Shop Coordinator
I have been with Utilities for 14 years now. Currently, I am a service schedule coordinator for the Electric Meter Shop. When the field crews go out and change or work on the meters, my role is to do all the data entry, documentation and coordinate with other departments in the office. I work with Light & Power staff, field crews and our electric meter shop employees. It is quite satisfying seeing how it all comes together like a puzzle. If a customer is experiencing meter issues, I troubleshoot and figure out what may be going on. I love being able to help, follow-up and play a role in getting them answers. Each day is different and finding resolution for a customer is my favorite thing. I don’t want to rest until it is figured out. We are a close-knit group. Whether it’s helping a fellow coworker rebuild after the Windsor tornado or helping families deal with illnesses, we are here for one another to lend a helping hand. It’s a wonderfully tight and supportive group to be a part of. Away from work, I love to hike, bike and spend time outdoors. My family is everything to me and we keep busy with my daughter’s sports. We just wrapped up basketball and are getting ready to start softball.
Kevin Armstrong, Line Crew Chief
I literally started from the ground up, as a Groundman. Recently, I was promoted to Special Services Supervisor. It’s been almost 19 years of PUD and fiber optic installs, repairing damaged light poles, rolling with all the changing technologies and systems, and I am most proud of right where I’m at today. It took a long haul to get here and a lot of hard, honest work. I can’t help but smile inside when I get wind that my son tells his buddies as he scurries up the obstacle course during his outdoor education class, “I have lineman in my blood." I hope the members of our community appreciate the service we provide. We all take great pride in what we do. We go above and beyond, every single time. This job means something more to all of us, other than just a paycheck. We work all day and sometimes overnight to get it right. Street lights don’t seem like that big a deal until they’re out. And unfortunately, bad things can happen when lights are out; we want the people in our community to be as safe as possible. What drives us daily is creating a safe haven for the people in this City.
- Water Engineering and Field Services Profiles
Jay Rose, Special Projects Manager
I’ve been with Utilities for 23 years. I went to CSU and after college moved to Los Angeles and worked for the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power. I helped install many of the subway stations, lifted freeways and various other projects. I even experienced some earthquakes, most notably the Northridge earthquake. For months, my job consisted of construction, design and repair projects following that disaster. Eventually, my wife and I decided to move back to Fort Collins. We needed a slower pace of life and it seemed like a better fit to raise a family. I started my job here doing similar work, managing large-scale infrastructure improvement projects. One of my most challenging projects was the Oak Street outfall, which was the installation of a 78-inch pipe inside a 96-inch tunnel. This project was monumental in alleviating major flooding in the downtown area. The stormwater pipe is 8-foot in diameter and starts at Oak Street, then goes under College Avenue with numerous inlets from neighborhoods and side streets. This pipe runs water all the way to the Udall Natural Area and the Poudre River. I’ve always found satisfaction in the knowledge that we are improving things for the community. We try to do everything with the least impact possible, and ultimately benefit the community with better functioning infrastructure and increased safety. I’m a big history buff. I also enjoy reading and learning as much as I can.
Matt Fater, PE, Civil Engineering Director
I started at Utilities 24 years ago as a young engineer in the Stormwater group. For the last 12 years, I have worked on capital projects, which was a shift from planning to construction. It is satisfying to see a design come to life and function like it is supposed to. Red Fox Meadows was one of my first projects. It is a neighborhood natural area and a stormwater detention site. The project reduced flood risk, improved habitat for wildlife and incorporated trails in the area. I’ve also managed several water and wastewater replacement projects and recently, we completed the Water / Wastewater Master Plan to prioritize infrastructure repairs. Interacting with residents is another thing I like to do. Hearing their experience firsthand and incorporating it, makes the outcome better for everyone. I hope that when residents see a road closure or active construction site, they understand there’s a lot of planning and consideration that went in to getting the project to that point. We don’t take disruptions lightly. We do our best to minimize impact, while enabling us to do what is required. I feel fortunate to live in a great city that takes a proactive approach in planning and strives to provide the best functioning infrastructure for the community. When I’m not working, you’ll find me outdoors. I love mountain biking, backcountry skiing and backpacking.
Heidi Hansen, Civil Engineer-Certified Floodplain Manager
Sometimes it's difficult to design floodplain solutions that adhere to FEMA's strict regulations and oversight. But early in my career, a mentor challenged me to, “find a version of yes.’ This mentality has stuck with me. So, I do everything possible to partner with the development community to come up with an option that not only meets the requirements, but that will work for them. I try to be positive in everything I do, and I'm honored to be a part of a team that is very forward-thinking, supportive and open to new initiatives. If there was one thing I wish more people understood, it's that floods can happen in Fort Collins. I love working at the City. I ride my bike or walk every single day. I love skiing, hiking, camping, reading and I absolutely love traveling. I try to take a big trip every year and if I had to pick a favorite place, my heart is in Paris.
Marsha Hilmes-Robinson, Civil Engineer-Floodplain Administrator.
I started working at Utilities three months before the 1997 Spring Creek flood. That experience will be something that I never forget. It was amazing to see the City staff, first responders, field workers, and the entire community come together. So much of what we do in stormwater today came about from that historic flood. Stormwater tends to be one of our most misunderstood utilities. When it’s working, you don’t see it. I hope people know that we are constantly working behind the scenes on something related to flooding to keep our community safe. There is no true off season. It’s not if we will have another flood, it’s when and where. We are fortunate in Fort Collins to have the support that we do. I love working in the community that I live in. I take a lot of pride in the progress we have made and in being able to help citizens make informed decisions.
- Water Resources and Treatment Operations Profiles
Nick Smiley, Sr. Maintenance Supervisor
I am the Maintenance Electrical Supervisor at the Drake Water Reclamation Facility (DWRF) and have been with Utilities for over 12 years. My team monitors and maintains all the operational equipment for 2,041 assets at the DWRF and Mulberry Water Reclamation Facilities, as well as Rigden Reservoir and Meadow Springs Ranch. We also schedule and maintain preventative maintenance work orders to keep the equipment operating in the most efficient manner possible. Our top priority is to be 100 percent regulatory compliant with pollution prevention measures to protect public health, safety and the environment. I really enjoy the many different facets to my role, including troubleshooting equipment and working with different entities and contractors. In my free time, I enjoy hunting, fishing and spending time with family and friends. I also enjoy gardening.
Meet Eileen Dornfest, Civil Engineer
My background is in engineering geology and I’ve been with Utilities for three years. I love working at the City because the work I do every day contributes directly to my own community. My passion is managing large engineering and construction projects. It’s less about the actual construction and more about managing multidisciplinary teams, where everyone has their own area of expertise and we all come together with a common goal. Starting with a concept and working through all the details with the project team and stakeholders to find an outcome that works to the benefit of everybody involved - that’s what drives me. We all walk away feeling good about the solution. One of the things that impresses me at the City is the commitment to transparency and the values. It’s not just that we say it, these concepts drive every decision that we make. I want to feel good about what I’m doing, be able to make decisions based on my values and know that we’re acting in the public’s best interest. My current role is to manage the Halligan Water Supply Project to help provide additional protection for water customers from future service interruptions during emergencies. I see such integrity in the whole team and feel so fortunate. We’re not just doing the job because we’ve been told to. We believe in it. There is thought behind every decision that is made. We care about the project, community, future generations and the environment. When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time outside with my family. My husband and I have two kids and two dogs. We recently got a whitewater raft, so we spend a lot of time rafting, camping and skiing.
Errin Henggeler, Sr. Environmental Regulatory Specialist
I love trash. In my job, I get to manage all kinds of it - from household hazardous waste to bringing composting into our internal operations. I am lucky because every day I feel like I am making a difference. I have always been passionate about clean water and recycling. We are here to educate others on how to be more civic-minded and keep things clean. Protecting the environment and our water is important to all of us. Our free Household Hazardous Waste Events are one of the ways we serve the City. These free events help residents reduce waste. When I’m not at work, you’ll find me planning our next dive. My husband and I started scuba diving on our honeymoon, and we have more than 120 dives under our belt. My son was certified last year, too. The biggest highlight so far was seeing an octopus in Cozumel.
Cole Gustafson, Lead Plant Operator
My wife and I are Fort Collins natives. My father worked as a Water Treatment Operator and moved into source and supply. His background in the industry opened the door for me at the City, where I started as a lawn crew kid. Now, I get to serve the community where I’m raising my daughter. Our crews don’t have it easy – they put in 12-hour shifts and spend as much time at work as they do with their families. Everyone from maintenance to operations believes in what they do here and are committed to the same goal – providing clean, safe drinking water. We work 24/7 to make that happen. In our spare time, my wife and I love taking drives in the mountains. She loves to hike and I love to hunt, so driving is our compromise. One of my favorite things to do is to spend time outdoors riding horses.
Kathleen Ganzer, Chemist
Science is in me. I grew up examining insects as a kid and have always been passionate about nature. So as a Chemist that is tasked with verifying that our water is safe, it is very important to me. People would describe me as observant, meticulous and curious. I am proud to serve the community. You can trust that 24/7 someone is checking your water. I’m the right person in the right place.
My job is to check and verify that all the PH levels related readings are correct. I'm checking to make sure the instruments in the field are accurate because we run our plant based on these readings. This is important stuff. People drink this water and we take it very seriously. You may not realize that when you turn on the tap, there is so much involved in the process. I want people to rest assured that someone is personally checking your drinking water. I love my job and I'm honored to do it.
John Wong, Water Treatment Instrument/Electric Technician
I wear a lot of hats. Our team is responsible for keeping all the instrumentation, electrical, lighting, computers and pumps up and running. I love the diversity in what I do. It’s a lot different than the submarine I used to work on in the Navy. From maintaining the SCADA systems to bending conduit and coding new programs, I’m never bored. Our team is awesome and makes me want to come to work each day. We all have our strengths and I’m known as the techie guy. Safety and going above and beyond to get it right is what we’re all about. Even if it does mean nine hours straight replacing a roof handler unit on the highest point of the rooftop, in late November - we are here for each other. I hope that people understand where their water comes from and how many people are involved in how they get it.