08-27-10 Bringing Home the Gold Again
Bringing Home the Gold Again!
For the fourth time, the City of McDonough’s Walnut Creek Water Pollution Control Plant has been awarded the coveted Gold Award by the Georgia Association of Water Professionals. The 2009 award recognizes 100% compliance with discharge from the city’s wastewater plant with no violations.
“Every wastewater plant sets this goal each year, and with restrictions from the State Environmental Protection Division, it is harder to meet,” explained Operations Manager Keith Dickerson, “but the staff looks forward to the challenge every year and takes pride in the accomplishment.”
When asked about earning the Gold Award for the fourth time, Mayor Billy Copeland said, “We, in McDonough, are fortunate to have Mr. Keith Dickerson as Director of our Wastewater Facility. Keith and his staff are extremely dedicated and talented, and on behalf of our citizens and the City Council, I want to applaud them for being awarded the Georgia Association of Water Professionals’ distinguished Gold Award for permit compliance.”
Missing from the line of accomplished plant employees is one man who has been paramount in reaching this goal all four times. “Elbert Thurman was the Maintenance Manager and a Class I Operator. His responsibilities reached every aspect of what we do at the Wastewater Plant. He encouraged the younger staff to learn and helped them prepare for the challenges of being a Wastewater Operator. Every staff member will miss him, and the city will miss him,” expressed Dickerson.
A warm, friendly smile was always extended to everyone by city employee Elbert Thurman. Elbert had retired from Atlanta’s wastewater plant but did not stay retired. Instead, he took the same type of position with McDonough’s wastewater plant. After ten years at Walnut Creek and at the age 59, this dedicated worker had decided that in January, 2011, he would finally hang up the work boots for good and enjoy being a citizen of leisure. Instead, Elbert passed away unexpectedly on July 30, 2010.
(L-R) Jeremy Newton, Michael Dickerson, Jay Foley, Mayor Copeland, Operations Manager Keith Dickerson, Josh Barham, and David Zoeckler celebrate receiving the Gold Award for the fourth time.