Become a Volunteer
Assist with cutting edge water research at the WERF offices. To apply, please contact Director of Communications, Carrie Capuco, with a resume and cover letter.
As part of WERF’s research process, we periodically seek members for Exploratory Teams and Issue Area Teams. These volunteers are responsible for research plan development, technical oversight, and peer review of high-priority research challenges identified by subscribers. Serving as an expert volunteer is a good opportunity for individuals with expertise in a specific area to get involved in WERF research.
Potential team members should have first-hand knowledge and experience in developing water quality research plans and in providing technical guidance and oversight to researchers. Members should also have a willingness and desire to collaborate with other professionals who truly care about water quality.
How to Get Involved
WERF Seeks Volunteers to Serve on Research Council
The Water Environment Research Foundation is seeking thought leaders from wastewater and/or stormwater utilities, and from industry, consulting firms and state agencies to serve on its Research Council starting in January 2014. One representative – from a WERF subscribing organization – from each of these four sectors will join the Research Council. The Council is a body of 13 senior technical advisors, appointed by the Board of Directors, that helps to create the vision and priority for future research, provides oversight and coordination across WERF’s research portfolio, and develops recommendations for funding of research programs.
Research Council members are volunteers and may serve for up to two 3-year terms. WERF’s conflict of interest and non-disclosure policies apply. WERF covers travel expenses for its annual late Winter / early Spring Council meeting and for all sponsored liaison activities to WERF research programs. The time commitment is on the order of a week to less than two weeks over the course of a year.
If interested, please forward your resume / curriculum vitae and a brief letter of interest no later than July 1 to Dan Woltering, Director of Research. If you know of someone who should be considered, please forward this announcement to them and ask them to respond directly to WERF. Self-nominations are welcome.
WERF Welcomes New Research Council Members in March 2013
Elizabeth Southerland, Ph.D.
Dr. Elizabeth Southerland is currently the Director of the Office of Science and Technology in the U.S. EPA’s Office of Water. Prior to joining EPA in 1984, she earned a Ph.D. in Environmental Science from Virginia Tech and worked in water quality programs for the State of Virginia and the U.S. EPA Chesapeake Bay Office. She has extensive experience applying science and technology to state and federal water programs to achieve clean and safe water. She has been a member of the Senior Executive Service since December 1999 and has held her current position since 2012. Her previous SES positions included serving as Director of the Superfund Office’s Assessment and Remediation Division, Deputy Director of the Office of Emergency and Remedial Response, and Director of the of the Standards and Health Protection in the Office of Water. During her SES career, she has been responsible for overseeing the development of sound, scientifically defensible criteria and standards under the Clean Water Act as well as soil, water, and air cleanup limits under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act. She has prepared exposure and risk assessments for regulatory actions, developed national guidance and regulations, and published laboratory analytical methods for environmental media. She has extensive experience collaborating with other federal agencies, states, industry, public interest groups, academia, and Congress to resolve national science policy disputes.
Paul Togna, Ph.D.
Dr. Paul Togna is currently the Chief Technology Officer for Environmental Operating Solutions. Prior to this position, he was with Envirogen Technologies where he played a lead technical role in developing and implementing novel biological treatment systems for groundwater and industrial wastewater contaminant removal applications during his 19-year tenure at the company. Dr. Togna has published more than 75 technical papers in journals and proceedings and has delivered more than 60 technical presentations. Dr. Togna holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from the Virginia Tech and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Cornell University.