Copper Basin Aerial. Photo by Tim Rue
A weekly newsletter by and for Metropolitan employees
May 20, 2019
Sun, Fun and a Bit of Rain: 2019 Solar Cup Recap
After a rain-filled final day of racing, Met concluded its Solar Cup competition with Oxford Academy from Cypress winning first place in the veteran’s division and Oaks Christian School from Westlake Village claiming the top award for a first-time team.

Teamwork and sportsmanship honors went to Anaheim High School and Compton High School. Best-looking boat awards were given to Calabasas High School and San Jacinto Valley Academy.

Video of the final day will be posted on Met's social media channels later today.

The schools were among 40 teams from Met’s service area who finished the year-long program with a competition weekend at Lake Skinner.

In addition to 750 students, the event drew 130 volunteers from Metropolitan and member agencies, as well as Occidental College and Southern California Edison. Julie Miller Kalbacher, who works in Met’s Education Unit, is the program director.

Michael Camacho, a director for the Inland Empire Utilities Agency who formerly served on Metropolitan’s board, was at the event all three days, helping teams and staff keep things running smoothly. Metropolitan directors Larry Dick of the Municipal Water District of Orange County and Donald Galleano of Municipal Water District of Riverside County also attended.

On Friday, teams completed a qualifying event. Saturday, the teams ran two endurance races, and finished on Sunday with 200-meter sprints.
Scouts Earn Water Conservation Merit Badge
We tend to think that being conscious and protective of the environment gained momentum in just the past few decades.

But the Boy Scouts of America created a soil and water conservation merit badge all the way back in 1952. It requires scouts to learn about soil, watersheds and water conservation, and is considered one of the more rigorous badges to earn.

When External Affairs Section Manager Yvette Martinez was recently approached by her son’s Pasadena Boy Scout troop to help with this badge exercise, she couldn’t turn down the opportunity.

With guidance from the Municipal Water District of Orange County, which has programs for Girl and Boy Scout merit badges , Yvette prepared an extensive two-day learning agenda. 

A total of 16 scouts, both boys and girls, joined Yvette and Elena Layugan from Upper San Gabriel Valley MWD for a Saturday workshop which included hands-on lessons and discussion of required topics.

MWD Director Charles Trevino was a guest speaker. “I loved their ‘ah-ha’ moments,” Yvette said, adding that we now have “scouts being leaders and stewards of the environment.”

Day two featured a visit to a watershed near San Gabriel Canyon with the group of scouts working and learning alongside staff from the U.S. Forest Service.

To see the Powerpoint presentation used for this program, click here .  
Sharing a Proud Family Legacy with His Children
During Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, David Sumi considers himself especially proud of his Japanese heritage and California roots. 

David is a fourth generation Japanese-American, the son of parents who were born in internment camps. “My grandparents came to California at the turn of the century where they worked as gardeners.” His dad, a former U.S. Marine, taught him about the importance of civic duty and his heritage. But because of sensitivities following the war, they were reluctant to speak Japanese.

David’s first visit to Japan was to ask the blessing of his fiancé’s father to propose to his wife, Yuki. Now, they visit every year with their daughters, Maple and Betty. The photo above is from one of their trips and shows a snowy day in Nagano, near the Olympic village. These days, his daughters are helping David improve his Japanese, but "he still speaks baby Japanese.”

David’s path to Metropolitan was paved by his family’s appreciation for water. His first job was at a park where the superintendent suggested he learn about water since the park's functions depend on good irrigation. From there, David knew he wanted to influence water policy.

After college, David spent a year as an Executive Fellow at the Department of Water Resources in Sacramento. Now he is a Resource Specialist in WRM, working on long-term planning through Metropolitan's Integrated Water Resources Plan. 

David is passionate about Metropolitan, his family and the SoCal lifestyle because “water is key to making all these things possible.”
New hires, transfers, promotions & retirements are posted here each month.   
Suggestion Box
Do you like this newsletter? Do you have any ideas for an employee profile? A great photo?
Email your thoughts and ideas to Jannine Rojo.
Stay Connected