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Justice Dennis R. O'Connor has been named the 2003 recipient of the American Water Works Association's (AWWA) Award of Merit for his work on the Walkerton Inquiry. This award is presented annually and recognizes individuals outside the water profession who have demonstrated outstanding service in support of the principles of AWWA in providing safe drinking water.
Ontario Water Works Association (OWWA) - A Section of AWWA, nominated Justice O'Connor for his work in bringing many diverse organizations and individuals together through his inquiry into contaminated water in Walkerton in 2000. His recommendations have resulted in new legislation and regulations to ensure the people of Ontario have access to safe, clean drinking water.
The award will be presented to Justice O'Connor during the Opening Ceremonies of the Joint Annual Conference of OWWA and OMWA (Ontario Municipal Water Association) Monday, May 5,at the Hamilton Convention Center.
Environment Minister Chris Stockwell will follow the award presentation with a keynote address on changes in Ontario drinking water regulations.
Plenary sessions (Monday morning and Tuesday afternoon) will focus on the conference theme "New Rules- New Roles," as the Ontario drinking water industry faces the challenges of implementing a new provincial regulatory system, based on Justice O'Connor's recommendations.
Political activist, Maude Barlow, will bring a consumer's perspective of government water policy to the Closing Plenary session, May 6, 1400 hrs. The outspoken critic, author, and international lecturer is sure to promote the public interest in safe drinking water.