APWA AZ Newsletter 2020 September

APWA AZ Newsletter 2020 September

Public works are the services and infrastructure required to sustain quality community life.

NEWSLETTER                                                                                                                                                                      September 2020


September 16, 2020
Virtual September Meeting
More Info >

October 6, 2020
AACE Virtual Happy Hour
More Info >


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First off, I wanted to give a HUGE SHOUTOUT to our Conference Committee. They have done such an amazing job organizing our Virtual Summer Series—a first for our Chapter. As the Summer Series ends, I encourage you to read the feature article below about the conference and check out the website to view any sessions you may have missed. Thank you to our presenters, sponsors, and all the volunteers that made this a successful conference!

As we end the summer conference and start looking forward to Fall, I hope you all took some time to enjoy your Labor Day weekend. Labor Day became a formal federal holiday in the early 1950s. It was created as a tribute to the achievements of the American worker and efforts made to ensure strength, prosperity, and the well-being of our country. As we celebrate Labor Day this year, on behalf of APWA, I would like to thank you all for being a part of our amazing public works workforce. It is because of you that we have safe roads, a clean community, and overall well-functioning cities. 

I urge you to take this month to reflect on your industry contributions and give yourself a pat on the back. Make sure to take some time for yourself as well—during this pandemic, we certainly seem to be working longer and harder as we navigate through the now greyed work-life balance. According to a one recent survey of 7,000 professionals, by early May of this year, 73 percent of American professionals were feeling burned out. Ideas to help deal with the burnout syndrome many are experiencing include setting a new schedule for yourself if you have a new routine (and sticking to it); creating remote “watercooler” time with coworkers to help with social support; and maintaining good sleep habits (dedicate a certain time to put that cell phone or laptop down). The public depends on you and your team to keep the community going, so take care of yourself first! 

Stay healthy, my friends! 


Kristin Tytler, P.E. 

Virtual September Meeting
September 16, 2020
Topic: Lightning Speed Progression Into Digital Infrastructure.  What to expect in the next 1-5 years in technology.
Speaker: Dean Nelson, Founder and Chairman, Infrastructure Masons

New Lifetime Member!
Congratulations to our newest lifetime member: Kevin Murphy of Avondale. 

New Members

Matt AlveySystems Integration ConsultantStanley CSS
Glen FarnhamGeneral Services ManagerGila County
Willis D. SawyerEngineering SupvCity of Phoenix
Lorizelda StoellerSolid Waste AdminCity of Phoenix
Lorena VillalobosTraffic Engineering Signs and Markings SupervisorCity of Glendale Arizona

New Member Spotlight
Be the next new APWA member to be featured!  This is a great opportunity to introduce yourself and to make new connections with potential clients and customers.

All it takes is to reach out to Suzanne Ledy at 480-644-3808 or Suzanne.ledy@mesaaz.gov

Name and Title: Matt Alvey, Systems Integration Consultant 

Agency: Stanley Convergent Security Solutions 

With APWA Since: 08/2020 

Describe your job responsibilities: Consult, design, install, and service commercial electronic security; access control, CCTV, verified intrusion detection, command centers, and embedded services 

What was your favorite project to work on in the last 10 years? I worked with a client to take antiquated systems across the country and upgrade all of their plants. This client was very good to work with, was open-minded about solutions, and we really worked as partners. Each plant had its own challenges to figure out, but when it was all done, their total operation was vastly improved. It was one of the biggest realized ROIs I’ve been a part of. It's great to see that what you do really helps people. 

Where have your travels taken you? I’ve been to France, London, and lived in Barcelona for six months when I was just in high school. I came from a small midwestern town, so I was like its Marco Polo! 

Name one thing not many people know about you: Most people don’t know that I have a very soft spot for my miniature poodle, Willy. I absolutely adore him! 

Who's Who in Public Works
If you work in Public Works and are interested in being spotlighted in our “Who’s Who in Public Works” Section, please contact Trace Baker at tbaker@logansimpson.com

Alternate Delegate Nominations due September 11, 2020 
The APWA-AZ Board is looking for the next Alternate Delegate for the Arizona Chapter. Interested and qualified members are encouraged to submit their name and qualifications to the Chapter’s Nominating Committee. Please review the Alternate Delegate Selection Criteria information, and if interested, submit your information to Sheila Hamilton (sheila@gettingitdone.org), by September 11, 2020. Delegate and Alternate Delegate responsibilities can be found on pages 6 – 7 of the Chapter Manual

APWA 2020 Annual Sponsorship
We have some great sponsorship opportunities to highlight your firm including in the Southern and Northern branches of APWA. Check out the link for further information.

Professional Development

Click, Listen, Learn
Preparing for the New Norm
October 29, 2020
More Info

Talking Top Tech Webinars

Technologies for Field Crews Edition

September 24, 2020

More Info

Public Works Job Opportunities

This section allows agencies to advertise their open positions. Please provide your advertisement and/or link to tbaker@logansimpson.com or suzanne.ledy@mesaaz.govIn addition, check out the APWA Work Zone site! Job openings on the site may be sorted by key word and location. 


Community Outreach Manager - ADOT
Highway Operations Technician 4 – ADOT
Resident Engineer – ADOT
Highway & Construction Laborer – ADOT 

City of Apache Junction 

Water District Superintendent 

City of Avondale 

Water Quality & Compliance Supervisor 

City of Buckeye 

Water Resources Maintenance Mechanic 
Water Resources Operator I – Collections 

City of Chandler 

Parks Maintenance Supervisor – CDL 
Utility Systems Technician II/Tech I – WW Collections 

Town of Gilbert  

Intelligent Transportation Systems Specialist 
Transportation Planning Manager 
Wastewater Utility Worker 

City of Glendale 

Business Analyst – Water Services 
Equipment Operator – Bulk Trash 
Equipment Operator Loose Trash/Bult Trash 
Industrial Maintenance Mechanic – Water Services Department 
Water Facilities Supervisor 
Water Plain Operator, Sr. 

City of Goodyear 

Assistant City Traffic Engineer 
Civil Engineer 
Construction Inspector 
Senior Project Manager 

Town of Maricopa 

Facilities Maintenance Technician 

Maricopa County 

CAD Technician – Flood Control District 
Civil Engineer – Environmental Services 
Engineer – Traffic Studies – Transportation 
Engineering Program Manager – Environmental Services 

City of Mesa 

Water Quality Inspector 
Water Resources Operator I/II – Water Reclamation 
Water Resources Operator I/II – Water Treatment 

City of Peoria 

Utility System Operator II – Water Distribution 
Engineering Technician II 
Wastewater Operator II 

City of Phoenix 

Civil Engineer II 
Fire Alarm/Security Systems Supervisor (Electrical Facilities Supervisor) 
Building Maintenance Worker 
Water Quality Inspector 

Town of Queen Creek 

Senior Administrative Assistant 
Utility Services Technician – Temporary 

City of Scottsdale 

Water/Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator II – Reclamation Services 


2020 Statewide Conference Wrap Up
Story by Conference Co-Chairs Christy Sipos, CPSM (Civiltec Engineering) and Scott Kirchhofer (Achen-Gardner Construction) 

Thank you to all the committee members, attendees, sponsors, moderators and speakers for making the first virtual Arizona Chapter APWA Statewide Conference a success. This was our fourth year organizing the conference, and in some ways, it was our most challenging. As we were getting closer to the conference date, our excitement level was at an all-time high. We had big plans and a strong desire to continue to improve the in-person conference, increase attendance, and, most importantly, add more value for attendees. Even with COVID-19 in the news, we remained optimistic things would get better and we would still be able to have a typical conference that included an exciting keynote speaker, networking opportunities, a fun night, an awards luncheon, and an agency showcase.

In April 2020, it became clear to us that COVID-19 was not going away, many budgets were becoming discretionary only and all of our big plans needed to wait. Between the Board and the Conference Committee it was a unanimous decision to postpone the in-person conference. We had some ideas for how to regroup but at the time virtual conferences were relatively new and some of the options were costly. Ultimately, we decided to forgo in-person networking events and focus on providing educational opportunities by spreading out planned presentations into live-hosted online sessions every Tuesday and Thursday in July and August. The best part is that we would do all this for free, thanks to our dedicated sponsors. Hence the first virtual Arizona Chapter APWA Statewide Conference was born and we branded it as a Free Virtual Summer Series. 


Positive Results 
We are happy to report that this format went well. Virtual attendance was good and each session had approximately 45 attendees. Having live presentations was the key that made this conference exciting. The interaction between moderators, speakers, and attendees was frequent and added value to all of the programs. As an association, we felt like APWA owned Tuesdays and Thursdays and attendees tuned in due to the regular schedule and solid programming. In July we had 386 virtual attendees and in August we had 418. All the sessions were recorded and posted on the conference website and have received hundreds of views. Those videos and the presentation slides are still available on the website and will never be taken down which we think provides our members and the public with opportunities to learn with no end date. 

Visit the website to view videos and download the summer series presentations.

Thank you to our moderators for becoming Zoom webinar experts and engaging with presenters and attendees. It’s not an easy job to present, especially when you can’t see your audience. These individuals stepped up and learned some advanced features of Zoom and were able to broadcast and moderate the panel with style. 
  • Al Field, Al Field & Associates
  • Chris Dusza, Civiltec Engineering
  • Chris Simko, Stantec
  • Cindy Laughlin, Sundt
  • Debbie Parkins, Western Technologies
  • Jeanne Sapon, DBA Construction
  • Kristin Tytler, City of Surprise
  • Nancy Cole, Pima County
  • Scott Kirchhofer, Achen-Gardner Construction
  • Stew Waller, Rinker Materials
  • Wendy Springborn, City of Tempe 
Now that it’s over, we are happy to say that we didn’t have any technical issues during the Virtual Summer Series and that’s in large part to the training and support from our chapter administrator and her staff. A big thanks goes to Sheila Hamilton and Nancy Lutey.   

We cannot thank our sponsors enough! As soon as we offered sponsorship opportunities, these firms signed up quickly and provided financial support when we needed it the most. Since our conference was free, we didn’t want to spend a lot of money on software or a company to broadcast the presentations.  


Awards Presentation 
One feature of the conference that also needed to adapt was the awards presentation. Since we couldn’t get on stage in a big ballroom we reached out to all of the individuals and project award winners and asked that they provide an award acceptance video. The results exceeded our expectations. All project of the year award winners produced high-quality videos highlighting their projects and including speeches by owners, engineers, and contractors. We strongly encourage everyone to view the list of award winners and the award video on the website (click the image below). A special thanks goes to Chris Ewell with the City of Phoenix for producing the final product. Due to the high production quality of the submitted videos and the final video we plan to do something similar next year.  

Conference Committee 
Thank you to the conference committee for your hard work in preparing for the in-person conference and the ability to pivot to the Free Virtual Summer Series. We couldn’t have done it without you, and we look forward to working with you on next year’s conference. 
  • Chris Ewell, Board Liaison, City of Phoenix
  • Chris Simko, Technical Program Chair, Stantec
  • April Victorino, Site Committee Co-Chair, Stantec
  • Dana Varieur, Site Committee Co-Chair, GHD
  • Kristin Peck, Exhibitor and Sponsor Chair, HILGARTWILSON
  • Joe Soto, Golf Chair, Retired Pima County
  • Al Field, Al Field & Associates
  • Cailey Jones, Achen-Gardner Construction
  • Chad Wilson, Sunland Asphalt
  • Cindy Laughlin, Sundt
  • Deborah Parkins, Western Technologies
  • John Tutor, Wood
  • Nancy Cole, Pima County
  • Sheila Hamilton, APWA
  • Sheila Smith, Arrington Watkins Architects
  • Sydney Chan, HILGARTWILSON 
Thanks again to everyone who contributed to and/or attended the 2020 virtual conference. A large part of our success comes from your participation and your feedback, which is extremely helpful to us. We listen, take notes, and we will make adjustments to improve and make the next conference a more valuable and memorable experience.?Feel free to contact us directly anytime. Again, thank you all for your support and we look forward to next year’s conference at the El Conquistador Tucson.

SAVE THE DATE: AUGUST 4 – 6, 2021 

2020 Project of the Year Award Winners 

Congratulations to all the project teams for their hard work and dedication to excellence in our industry. Visit the conference website to view a video presentation of the award winners.


Environmental Category - Less Than $5 Million 
Project Name: Beardsley WRF Solids Pipeline Rehabilitation  
Managing Agency: City of Peoria 
Primary Consultant: Dibble Engineering 
Primary Contractor: Achen-Gardner Construction 


Environmental Category - $5 Million to $25 Million 
Project Name: Salt River Siphon Repair  
Managing Agency: Central Arizona Project 
Primary Consultant: N/A 
Primary Contractor: Achen-Gardner Construction 
This project also won a national APWA Project of the Year Award! 

Structures Category - Less Than $5 Million 
Project Name: Veterans Reflection Circle  
Managing Agency: City of Surprise 
Primary Consultant: Logan Simpson Design 
Primary Contractor: Haydon Building Corp 
This project also won a national APWA Project of the Year Award! 


Structures Category - $5 Million to $25 Million 
Project Name: Gilbert Regional Park Phase One
Managing Agency: Town of Gilbert 
Primary Consultant: Dig Studio 
Primary Contractor: Haydon Building Corp 

Transportation Category - Less Than $5 Million 
Project Name: Moore Road to La Canada Drive Roundabout  
Managing Agency: Town of Oro Valley 
Primary Consultant: PSOMAS 
Primary Contractor: Borderland Construction 

Transportation Category - $5 Million to $25 Million 
Project Name: Heritage District Transportation Improvements Project  
Managing Agency: Town of Gilbert 
Primary Consultant: Tristar Engineering and Management 
Primary Contractor: Hunter Contracting 

Transportation Category - More than $75 Million 
Project Name: Ina Road Traffic Interchange 
Managing Agency: ADOT 
Primary Consultant: PSOMAS 
Primary Contractor: Sundt/Kiewit (Joint Venture) 


Small Cities/Rural Communities (Structures) 
Project Name: Alley Gate Access Program 
Managing Agency: City of Tolleson 
Primary Consultant: N/A 
Primary Contractor: Biddle & Brown Fence Company 


Small Cities/Rural Communities (Transportation) 
Project Name: Grand Canyon Boulevard 
Managing Agency: City of Williams 
Primary Consultant: Woodson Engineering 
Primary Contractor: LPs Excavation & Paving 


Small Cities/Rural Communities (Environment) 
Project Name: Wastewater Treatment Plant Improvements and Tyson Wash Manhole Protection 
Managing Agency: Town of Quartzsite 
Primary Consultant: PACE 
Primary Contractor: Jonovich Companies 

A Message to Potential Speakers about Planning for the Future of In-Person Events 
The 2021 North American Snow Conference (NASC) and PWX are currently scheduled to be held as planned. We realize we are now living in an ever-changing world, and although we hope we can meet in-person for these events, we are planning for all scenarios. We also understand that Public Works professionals are entrenched in seeing their communities through these uncertain times and may not be able to commit to a presenter’s role at NASC and/or PWX at this time. 

Our message to those who find themselves in this situation is to encourage you to move forward with submitting your proposal(s). APWA staff are working to have contingency plans in place to handle situations in which selected speakers are ultimately unable to present due to situations out of their control, such as travel restrictions and budget cuts. 

We remain committed to creating ways to provide the high-quality education conference attendees have come to expect regardless of the situation, and we plan to make every effort to ensure the pathway remains open to those of you who have valuable information and experiences to share. 



Get ready to experience APWA’s best in education and credentialing, because we're bringing you an all-new learning experience each month with PWX@Home! PWX@Home will feature over a hundred online education sessions, exhibits, and networking opportunities presented, by topic, to you throughout 2020 - 2021. With expert-led education and virtual and interactive experiences, you won't want to miss this unique opportunity to get top-notch education in your field. If you are from a small city or rural community, check out the SCRC Perspective On series outlined below. And keep your eye on https://www.apwa.net/MyApwa/Apwa_Public/PWX_at_Home/PWX_at_Home.aspx for the latest learning opportunities. 

PWX@Home Series for Small Cities and Rural Communities 
Don’t miss your chance to participate in the Small Cities/Rural Communities (SCRC) Perspective On Series held live the first Wednesday of each month as part of the PWX@Home program. Each month the panel discussion will focus on a new technical area as it relates to unique challenges and opportunities for small cities and rural communities. Registration is free for members and nonmembers. This is a great opportunity for you to invite other staff from your agency or colleagues to participate. 

Annual Series Registration – Register now for the annual series and automatically receive instructions one-day prior to each live program.  

SCRC Perspective on Fleet – Have a specific interest in fleet or have staff that may be interested? Register now to participate in this Wednesday’s (September 2) live program. If you register for the annual series, you will automatically be registered for this program. 

Finding Success in Your Small City Fleet 
Managing a public fleet in a small city or rural community must be a proactive endeavor. Fleet managers must extend the life of equipment and vehicles, prioritize purchases, and maintain a fluid shift model to manage employees. Join this panel discussion to learn more about how fleets are managed in small cities and rural communities. 

SCRC Perspective on UPROW – Check out last month’s program by watching the recording or sharing the link with other staff members. 

Maintaining Utilities and Managing Rights-of-Ways in Small Cities/Rural Communities 
While small cities and rural communities face the same challenges as larger and urban communities such as right-of-way management and utility coordination, small cell and 5G also affect small cities and rural communities.  Join this panel discussion to learn more about how utilities and public rights-of-way are managed in small cities and rural communities. 

Membership Town Hall 
On October 6, 2020, APWA National is reaching out to Chapter Leaders through a Membership Town Hall. Scott Grayson, APWA CEO, will facilitate this session. Comparing the strategies chapters used pre-COVID with the strategies being used now will be helpful in seeing the Big Picture of APWA membership. He will be asking questions and helping Chapters learn from each other regarding the following items - What are we hearing? What do budget shortfalls in cities and states mean for public agencies and for membership in your chapter? What can APWA do to help? Can we help you use virtual meetings to connect with the members of the chapter? 


Public works are the services and infrastructure required to sustain quality community life.

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