Pictured from left: Ken Kirk, National Association of Clean Water Agencies; Karen Pallansch, Alexandria Renew Enterprises; Bill Northey; and Philip Friess, Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County.
Pictured from left: Ken Kirk, National Association of Clean Water Agencies; Karen Pallansch, Alexandria Renew Enterprises; Bill Northey; and Philip Friess, Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County.

The Iowa Secretary of Agriculture has been honored by the National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA) for excellence in public service.

Bill Northey, who was recognized at the 2015 NACWA Winter Conference on Feb. 2 in Charleston, SC, is the first state secretary of agriculture to receive NACWA’s National Environmental Achievement Award.

The award is presented to current or former elected or appointed public officials at the local, state and federal level of government who have demonstrated exemplary commitment and service to their community, the environment and to NACWA.

Northey was selected for this honor for his leadership in establishing and growing the Iowa Water Quality Initiative and for working in a collaborative manner with both point sources and nonpoint sources to improve water quality. 

“It is an honor to receive this recognition from such a distinguished organization that has a long history of working on water quality issues,” Northey said. “Our approach has always been to work together with point sources to address water quality, an issue we all care about. This award is an opportunity to highlight the tremendous work that has been done in Iowa and to showcase our leadership role nationally in addressing water quality.”

NACWA represents the interests of more than 300 public agencies and organizations that have made the pursuit of scientifically based, technically sound and cost effective laws and regulations their objective. NACWA members serve the majority of the sewered population in the United States and collectively treat and reclaim more than 18 billion gallons of wastewater daily.

Iowa members are the Ames Water & Pollution Control Department, Cedar Rapids Utilities Department and city of Des Moines.

The National Environmental Achievement Awards annually recognize individuals and member agencies that have made outstanding contributions to environmental protection and wastewater management.