Metropolitan Board Room, January 2019
A weekly newsletter by and for Metropolitan employees
January 14 , 2019
New Era of Metropolitan Board Leadership Begins
More than 300 elected officials, community leaders, water agency representatives, friends and family celebrated last week as Gloria Gray was sworn in as Metropolitan’s Chairwoman of the Board by Inglewood Mayor James Butts. 

Gray thanked Chairman Record for his outstanding leadership and pledged, “I am up to the challenge,” and committing to “work hard for our board to come together and have a common vision about our future.”

LA Mayor Garcetti recognized the extraordinary moment saying, “Today Gloria Gray puts herself in that book of American history, of Los Angeles and Southern California history.” San Diego Mayor Faulconer also spoke at the meeting and congratulated Chairwoman Gray, declaring this is “time for a new era of cooperation.”

Assemblymember Laura Friedman, who previously served on the Met board, offered, “If you know Gloria, she is very passionate about public service. She also understands there is something that binds everyone – access to clean and potable water.” LA County District Attorney Lacey, LA City Council President Wesson, and Delta Stewardship Council Chairman Fiorini were among the other speakers at the meeting .

At the reception following the board meeting, speakers from several organizations - including AFSCME Local 1902, the Black Employees Association of Metropolitan, and Women at Metropolitan - spoke of Chairwoman Gray's passion for public service, commitment to equal opportunity, and boundless energy to teach and learn. One of the more touching moments came from words of praise offered to Chairwoman Gray by retired board member Regina Murph, the first African-American woman elected to Met’s Board who represented Compton beginning in the 1980s.
ACWA Video Series Highlights Water Storage
When Metropolitan built Diamond Valley Lake after the 1991 drought, it doubled the amount of Southern California’s water storage.

That success story is prominently featured in the first of 10 new videos that are being produced by the Association of California Water Agencies.

Watch the ACWA video here .
The series, called ‘California H2O - Flowing for the Future,’ highlights innovative ways that agencies like Met are meeting the water demands of a growing state.
The first video, “Saving for a Dry Day,” begins with a message from Metropolitan GM Jeff Kightlinger . “Climate change is already impacting us and it’s only going to get more severe.”
Brent Yamasaki , who worked at the Diamond Valley Lake site for four years during the construction of the project, is interviewed in the video about the transformation of the Valley as the new reservoir was being built. “Looking back at how complicated the work was, and how quickly it needed to get done, it was hard to imagine we would ever get to this point,” Yamasaki says in the video.
Diamond Valley Lake has been called “Southern California’s water insurance policy,” according to Kightlinger .
The video also features some of Metropolitan's groundwater programs, which are the equivalent of another Diamond Valley Lake in terms of their capacity to hold water. Overall, they provide enough storage capacity to serve 15 million homes for a year.
The next two videos in the series - innovation in agriculture  and safe water supply  - are available on the ACWA website. Seven more videos will be available in the coming months.   
Preserving the Heritage of the Old West with Humor
Eric Scranton is one of Metropolitan’s newest faces and has an important role for the district.

As an O&M Tech based at Diemer, Eric is often out patrolling Metropolitan's huge system. Typically, the first half of his day consists of checking “dig-alert tickets” which let him know what kind of activities are occurring near pipelines – activities that can include accidents, digging and construction – and then verifying that contractors and all of the work stays within regulation. The rest of his day is typically spent driving throughout Orange County to physically inspect the tickets and check on the distribution system. Traveling the full length of the system to which he is assigned can take up to three days.

But when Eric isn’t out patrolling, he’s enjoying history with his fellow “Clampers” – members of the E. Clampus Vitus organization. ( Link to news story on the Clampers organization ) The organization is dedicated to the preservation of the heritage of the American West, with roots in gold mining.

“It’s a fun group. It’s believed the organization was created by miners to poke fun at the more ‘prestigious’ groups at the time like the Masons,” Eric explains. Their motto, Credo Quia Absurdum, which roughly translates to, “I believe it because it is absurd,” certainly showcases that spirit of fun.

Activities range from plaque dedication ceremonies at historical sites to fundraisers for scholarships to four-wheel drives to old mines.

Eric says, “I like history a lot and basically anything mechanical.” Just a few months ago, Eric brought into the office a 95-year-old record player he had restored, with records to celebrate the 100 th anniversary of Armistice Day. He also shared a World War I Doughboy helmet and bayonet from 1917.
New hires, transfers, promotions & retirements are posted here each month.  
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