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Dr. Mark LeChevallier received the 2013 Research Innovation Award from the Water Research Foundation
American Water announced that Dr. Mark LeChevallier, director of innovation & environmental stewardship, received the 2013 Research Innovation Award from the Water Research Foundation. This award honors researchers and research teams who have made significant contributions to advancing the science of water through Foundation-sponsored research. The award was received at the Water Research Foundation’s annual Subscriber Breakfast.
In his 28-year career, LeChevallier has been involved in 50 Water Research Foundation projects and has made significant contributions in understanding the microbiology of water. In addition, his work has had a direct impact on improving water quality and, in turn, protecting public health for all Americans. He took the lead in the late 1980s in developing methods and monitoring for Giardia and Cryptosporidium in American’s water systems; he openly reported the data at a time when full disclosure of contaminant occurrence in water supplies was neither voluntary nor recommended.
Since 1985, LeChevallier has worked for American Water and currently directs the research and environmental compliance programs, including the development of environmental management plans for more than 1,000 operating centers, environmental audits to ensure compliance, development of a national cross connection control program, and implementation of environmental stewardship and greenhouse gas control programs. He also leads the company’s Innovation Development Process, which tests and develops new technologies and processes for use in the company and the water industry.
LeChevallier’s contributions to the water industry include more than 20 awards and more than 100 research papers authored or co-authored. He has also served as principal investigator or co-investigator on nearly 60 research grants totaling more than $31 million. Additionally, he has conducted nearly $1.5 million of research on the topic of water reuse and planning.
Despite the demands of his professional work, LeChevallier has always made it a point to serve his community. He is a mentor and guide for other scientists. He has actively engaged students at the elementary, high school, and college level, and has served on graduate student committees at numerous universities.
LeChevallier is also known around the industry for his talent for making complex scientific concepts more easily understandable to the general public. With this goal in mind, he began writing a blog on American Water’s website.