A 44-year veteran of the Evansville Water and Sewer Utility has received the highest state-wide award for service to the water industry. Duane Gilles (PRONOUNCE: gill-es) was honored with the Indiana Section, American Water Works Association 2017 George Warren Fuller Award at the Association conference here in February. Gilles also will be recognized nationally at the American Water Works Association 2017 Annual Conference in Philadelphia.
“We work with Duane every day and we know he is one of the best of the best. His passion for the water industry, excellent customer service and tenacious get-it-done attitude makes him an excellent role model for young professionals entering the workforce today,” said Allen Mounts, director, Evansville Water and Sewer Utilities. “If you know Duane, you know he is humble and one of the best examples of a servant leader.
“Duane is the type of person you want to replicate throughout your entire workforce. We are so proud that Duane joins an elite group of high impact AWWA professionals.”
The Fuller Award is the highest national honor a local AWWA Section can present to its members. Each section may designate one of its members to receive a Fuller Award. The designation recognizes the contributions the individual has made toward the advancement of water works within the particular Section. In 1942 the Fuller Awardees formed the George Warren Fuller Award Society.
Gilles is committed to clean water in Indiana. He began his career in the early 1970s at age 18 when he started working for the local water utility. He has worked under seven different mayors over the past 44-plus years, three different companies and never had to change desks or even offices.
His commitment to water system management extends to teaching future managers. He teaches several units in the yearly Operators School and he was instrumental in the creating the Indiana Water Agency Response Network -- INWARN.
The George Warren Fuller Award is presented annually for distinguished service to the water supply industry. Fuller, who lived from 1868 to 1934, was an international expert in civil engineering and was responsible for innovations in water and wastewater treatment. He designed and built the first modern water filtration plant and the first chlorination system that disinfected drinking water in the United States.
The Indiana Section of the AWWA is the authoritative resource for promoting safe drinking water, public health, safety and welfare by uniting the efforts of the full spectrum of the drinking water community in Indiana. Through its collective strength it provides timely educational forums, open communications and support for technical, legislative and regulatory activities to advance the technology, science, management and government policies related to the stewardship of water. To learn more about the Indiana Section AWWA, call 866.213.2796 or visit www.inawwa.org.