Executive Committee Bio


Robert Fischer, President
Bob has been the Water Quality Superintendent for South Burlington Vermont since 2015, overseeing two advanced facilities including energy production, thermophillic and mesophilic digestion, microfiltration, BNR and 34 pumpstations. He earned a BA in Biology and History (Dual Major) from the State University of New York College at Buffalo (1987) and did graduate work at Humboldt State University (1993). As a Fisheries Biologist in the late 1980’s and 1990’s Bob managed several large projects including IFIM studies on the Truckee River system for the USFS, harvest management for the Yurok Tribe/USFWS and as Assistant Forest Fisheries Biologist for the USFS Eldorado National Forest. Bob started his career in Water Quality at the Truckee Tahoe Sanitation Agency, California and continued at Middlebury Vermont and as Chief Operator at the Montpelier Vermont Water Resource Recovery Facility. Bob is a Vermont Grade 5 DM Wastewater Operator and Class 4 C Water Operator and is the former Government Affairs Chair for NEWEA. Bob is a Past President and former Government Affairs Chair for GMWEA. He is a member of the Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers and recipient of: Crystal Crucible Society (2007), WEF Laboratory Analyst Excellence (2010), NEWEA Alfred E. Peloquin Award (2014), NEWEA Operator Award (2019), Vermont Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence (2015), APWA Northeast Region and National Water Respources Manager of the Year (2022) . Bob was also the Chief Water Operator for the Town of Websterville Vermont (2007-2010) and is also a twenty-two year United States Ski and Snowboard Coach for the Killington Mountain School (KMS).
Scott Goodinson, President Elect
Scott Goodinson has worked in the wastewater industry for over 30 years. He is a US Navy Veteran, serving onboard a nuclear-powered fast attack submarine during the 80’s. After leaving the Navy in 1986, he tried his hands at several jobs but like most of us, a better environment and clean water was in his blood. Professional Services Group (PSG) hired Scott in 1990 as an entry-level operator at the Cranston WPCF where he worked for 20 years. After retiring from Cranston, Scott worked at the West Warwick WPCF and the Warwick Sewer Authority as the Superintendent at both facilities. Scott is currently the Superintendent at the Town of Narragansett Wastewater Treatment Facility.
Mr. Goodinson has a Rhode Island Grade IV Operator Wastewater License, a Grade II Collections System Operator License, is a Veolia Water Project Manager’s “Boot Camp” Graduate, a RI Interlocal Trust Supervisor’s Management Institution (SMI) Graduate, he holds numerous Train-the-Trainer Certifications and is OSHA 40 hour certified.
Scott served as a Board Member on the Pawtuxet River Authority & Watershed Council for over 10 years, was a member on the RI Operations Challenge Team for 8 years, he is a Past-President and a former State Director of the Rhode Island Clean Water Association (RICWA).
Deborah Mahoney, Vice President
Deb Mahoney is Brown and Caldwell’s Boston Office Leader and Municipal Market Leader for New England. She has worked in municipal wastewater in New England for 23 years. She holds a BS in Civil Engineering and an MBA from UMass-Lowell. Deb has been a committed NEWEA member her entire career and has held positions as YP Chair, NEWEA Secretary and Assessment and Development Committee Chair. She is also a proud member of the 5S. In addition to NEWEA, Deb is on the Board of Directors for the North East Biosolids and Residuals Association, holding the position of Vice President.
David VanHoven, Treasurer
David earned a BS from Bucknell University and MS from University of Wisconsin. He is a Program and Project Manager with over 20 years of experience in the water and wastewater industry currently working on large wet weather projects in New England. He served as previous chair of the Water For People committee.
Frederick McNeill, Past President
Fred started his engineering career over 35 years ago as a Peace Corps Volunteer managing a rural water supply program in Sierra Leone, West Africa. Fred then embarked on a 20 year consulting career including ten years working internationally in Egypt, Jordan, Armenia, Georgia, and Bulgaria. Returning to his home town Fred moved to the public sector in 2006 and became Chief Engineer for the City of Manchester’s Environmental Protection Division where he manages one of northern New England’s largest wastewater utilities. Fred has a BS in Civil Engineering from Northeastern University and an MBA from Southern New Hampshire University. A past president of New Hampshire Water Pollution Control Association, Fred is currently a member of the New Hampshire Rivers Management Advisory Committee and has served as a New England Water Pollution Control Commissioner since 2007. A long-time industry advocate, Fred has published/presented over 50 technical papers in his career on a wide-range of environmental engineering topics.
Mary Barry, NEWEA Executive Director
Mary Barry is the Executive Director of NEWEA, the premier Water Quality Member Association in New England. Throughout her tenure, she has placed a bold emphasis on volunteer support; member services, program expansion, broader technical reach, and public out-reach. Ms. Barry’s motivation and commitment is responsible for guiding the Association’s efforts to improve water quality and elevating the value of water and significance of our industry. Ms. Barry’s leadership is focused on advancing knowledge, innovation, and sound public policy for the protection of the water environment and our quality of life. Before serving as Executive Director, Ms. Barry worked in the environmental engineering industry for nearly 25 years as Strategic Market Programs Director at local, national and international engineering companies within the New England area. Ms. Barry has a B.S. in Business Management and Marketing from the University of Massachusetts and a M.A. in Communications Management and Public Relations from Emerson College.
James Barsanti, WEF Delegate
Jim has 37 years of experience in the water and wastewater field. He is presently working as an Environmental Engineer with MassDEP and is an Adjunct Instructor at Bristol Community College teaching courses in wastewater collection systems and water distribution systems. He has a Master’s Degree and Bachelor’s Degree from Worcester Polytechnic Institute and is a registered professional engineer in Massachusetts and Vermont and a NEWEA Grade IV Collection Systems Operator and Massachusetts Grade 4D Distribution Systems Operator-In-Training. He has been an active member of NEWEA and WEF since 1992 and served as NEWEA President in 2017. He is a member of the Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers and the Golden Manhole Society and was the 2014 Massachusetts recipient of the NEWEA Alfred E. Peloquin Award and 2019 recipient of the James J. Courchaine Collection Systems Award.
Peter Garvey, WEF  Delegate
Peter is a Vice President with Dewberry Engineers Inc. and from it’s Boston office, oversees Dewberry’s operations in New England. He has over 30 years of experience working with clients to assess and improve their water, wastewater and stormwater infrastructure. He earned a Bachelors degree in Environmental Engineering and mathematics from Trinity College, Dublin and a Master’s in Business Administration from the Darden School at the University of Virginia. Peter is registered Professional Engineer in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Hampshire and New York. Peter is the past chair and vice chair of NEWEA’s Collection Systems Committee, and was 2020 recipient of that committee’s Golden Manhole award. He has been a regular presenter and moderator at NEWEA conferences and seminars. In addition to his current WEF Delegate duties, Peter is also an active member of WEF’s Collection System Committee.
Ray Vermette, WEF Delegate
Ray is currently the Facility Supervisor at the City of Dover, NH Wastewater Treatment Facility with over 30 years of experience in the wastewater field. He has an Associate’s Degree in Water and Wastewater Technology from the New Hampshire Technical College and a Certificate in Supervisory Skills from the University of New Hampshire. Ray is a New Hampshire Grade IV Wastewater Operator, NEWEA Grade IV Collections Operator, New Hampshire Grade I Water Treatment Operator and a NEWEA Grade I Laboratory Analysis. Ray has been a NEWEA member for over 20 years, serving as 2019 President, NH State Director and the Plant Operations Committee Chair. Before his involvement with NEWEA, Ray served on many NHWPCA Committees and was the Past President of the Associations 40th year. He is a past recipient of the NEWEA Alfred E. Peloquin Award,Operator of the Year Award and the Hatfield Award. Ray is also a member of the Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers.
Janine Burke-Wells, WEF Delegate
Janine Burke-Wells is the Executive Director of the North East Biosolids & Residuals Association, a position she has held since May 2019. Prior to joining NEBRA, Janine worked as a public servant for over three decades – 10 years with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and over 20 years in local government where she managed the wastewater systems in West Warwick and Warwick (Rhode Island). Ms. Burke-Wells earned a degree in chemical engineering from the University of Rhode Island and a Master of Public Administration degree from Northeastern University. She represents the State of Rhode Island to the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission. Ms. Burke-Wells has served NEWEA in many capacities including President in 2018. She is a member of NEWEA’s Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers. She continues to maintain a Rhode Island Wastewater Operator’s license which someone went out of their way to help her obtain early on in her clean water career.
Virgil Lloyd, WEF Delegate
Virgil is a Senior Vice President with Fuss & O’Neill Engineers, serving clients throughout New England. He has over 40 years’ experience in the water and wastewater industry. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine. Virgil holds a Master’s Degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of New Haven and a BS degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Connecticut. He is a devoted member of NEWEA and has served the organization in many roles, including having the honor to serve as President in 2021. He is also a long-time supporter of CT state association activities, where he is currently serving on the board of the Connecticut Water Environment Association and as chair of the Scholarship & Awards Committee. He is eagerly looking forward to serving the Association in the role of WEF Delegate.
Vanessa McPherson, Connecticut State Director
Vanessa is a Principal Engineer with Arcadis, focused on wastewater infrastructure in Connecticut for nearly 20 years. Her experience extends from planning through construction phases on collection system and treatment projects. She received both a Bachelors and Master’s Degree in Environmental Engineering from Manhattan College, and is a registered Professional Engineer in Connecticut and New York. Her passion for all things water is one of the things that has defined Vanessa all of her life. Vanessa is a Board Member of CTWEA, and is honored to be a part of such a distinguished group of clean water professionals and advocates. She also serves on the Water Pollution Control Commission for the Town of Redding, CT.
Paula Drouin, Maine State Director
Paula Drouin is Assistant General Manager of the Lewiston-Auburn WPCA. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Natural and Applied Sciences and a master’s degree in Biology, both from the University of Southern Maine. She also holds a Grade V-B Maine Wastewater license and a Grade II NEWEA Wastewater Laboratory Analyst certificate. Paula has been very active with the Maine Water Environment Association (MEWEA). She founded the Young Professionals Committee in 2011 and then went on to form and chair the New Media Committee (since combined with Communications) in 2014 which brough MEWEA into the world of Facebook and Twitter, and she still oversees those social media accounts as well as the website. She served as MEWEA President in 2018 and has also since chaired the Public Relations Committee and Awards Committee.
John Digiacomo, Massachusetts State Director
John is the Assistant Town Engineer for the Town of Natick, Massachusetts and has almost 26 years of experience as both a consultant (8 years) and municipal engineer (18 years). John earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering with a concentration in Environmental Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) in 1997, is a Registered Professional Engineer in Massachusetts and a Certified Soil Evaluator in Massachusetts. He has been an active member and supporter of NEWEA since 2004 and has been a member of multiple committees (Collection Systems, Stormwater, CSO/Wet Weather, Membership, Public Awareness, Awards) during that time. He has been a regular moderator at NEWEA conferences and seminars and helped to coordinate numerous conferences during his time on the Collection Systems Committee. He is a past Chair of both the Collection Systems Committee and Assessment and Development Committee as well as past Council Director for the Collection Systems/Water Resource Council. John is also proud to be a member of the Massachusetts Water Environment Association (MAWEA) Board of Directors. He is a member of the Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers and the Golden Manhole Society. He is also a member of WEF’s Collection Systems Committee.
Michael Trainque, New Hampshire State Director
Michael received his BS in Civil Engineering from UMass- Lowell in 1979 where he received the BSCES Howe-Walker award for outstanding ASCE student chapter member as Vice president of the ASCE student chapter. He is a licensed professional Civil Engineer in NH, MA, ME, VT and FL and has NCEES national certification. Michael received the Alfred E. Peloquin award from NEWEA at the annual conference in January 2022. He was with Hoyle, Tanner & Associates, Inc. for over 42 years, most recently as Vice President in the Northeast Municipal Engineering Services group in Manchester, NH. Michael’s experience is primarily in wastewater collection and treatment but also includes stormwater and other aspects of Civil Engineering. He served for 2 years on the NH Legislative Commission to study stormwater. He is currently the Chairman of Industrial Advisory Board for the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at UMass Lowell and has been an active member of the Advisory Board since 1999. Michael serves on the Permits and Government Affairs Committees for the New Hampshire Water Pollution Control Association as well as the NEWEA Government Affairs Committee. Michael is a member of WEF as well as several other water and wastewater trade associations.
Edward Davies, Rhode Island State Director
Eddie is a Superintendent of Wastewater and an Industrial Pretreatment Program Coordinator for the Quonset Development Corporation in North Kingstown, RI. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Aquaculture & Fishery Technology from the University of Rhode Island, has held positions in various scientific disciplines over the past 23 years, and has spent the last 12 years specializing in wastewater treatment. Eddie served honorably in the RI National Guard, 3rd Battalion – 172nd Infantry Division (Mountain), from 1995 – 2003. He has a Rhode Island Grade IV Wastewater Operator License, a NEWEA Grade III Collections System Operator Certification, and a NEWEA Grade II Laboratory Analyst Certification. Eddie has been an active member of Rhode Island Clean Water Association (RICWA) since 2013, and continues to be heavily involved with Operator Training and Operations Challenge Programs.
Michael Smith, Vermont State Director
Michael Smith is a Senior Technical Leader for Weston & Sampson Engineers in their Waterbury, VT office. Smitty has a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering from Norwich University, in Northfield, VT, is a registered Professional Engineer in Vermont, Maine, New Jersey and New York. He has worked for the past 35 years on municipal and industrial wastewater treatment, design and construction projects; as well as agricultural bio-energy projects. Most recently, Smitty has been working with craft breweries throughout New England on high-strength wastewater planning and pre-treatment, winning State and regional awards for several of these projects. He has been an active member of GMWEA and NEWEA for 28 years, serving on both the Collection Systems Committee and the Operations Challenge Committee for most of his membership; and is a recipient of the Collection System Committee’s Golden Manhole Award. He is currently a member of the NEWEA Industrial Wastewater Committee and is volunteering on a technical advisory committee with other environmental consultants and members of the Vermont DEC to update Vermont’s Indirect Discharge Rules.
Scott Lander, Collection Systems/Water Resource Council Director
Scott is Vice President of Stormwater Management Systems for Retain-it LLC located in Granby Ct. He has 44 years of experience with the first 36 years supplying the wastewater and stormwater collections systems industry with watertight sealing solutions and during the last 9 years in his current position, supplying stormwater infiltration and detention systems for commercial, residential and municipal site development. He has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Entrepreneurship & New Venture Management from Northeastern University, Boston, MA.
Scott has been actively involved in NEWEA for 12 years and has been a regular moderator at NEWEA conferences and seminars. He is a long-standing member of the Collection Systems Committee, Stormwater Committee, and Public Awareness Committee. Most recently Scott was Chair of the NEWEA Collection Systems Committee from 2020 – January 2023. He was the 2023 recipient of the Collection Systems Committee Golden Manhole Society Award.
Philip Tucker, Communications Council Director
Philip Tucker has been in the wastewater industry since 1998. In that time Phil has done just about every job there is to do as an operator. He became a member of both MEWEA and NEWEA in 2013. He immediately joined MEWEA’s Collection System Committee and was awarded the Charles Perry Award in 2017. He joined the NEWEA Public Awareness Committee in 2016 and the Government Affairs Committee in 2021. He has served as the chair and co-chair of MEWEA’s Convention Committee since 2017 and in 2021 he had the honor of being MEWEA President. In 2022 he received MEWEA’s Past President Award and President’s Service Award. That brings us to 2023 and he is honored to have received the Youth Educators Award, along with his wife at the 2023 Annual Convention.
Colin O’Brien, Outreach Council Director
Colin O’Brien is a Client Service Manager for Brown and Caldwell’s New England Team located in Andover, MA. He received his B.S. in Environmental Engineering from Clarkson University in Potsdam, NY. He has over six years of experience in the wastewater industry working on projects across the Northeast. Colin manages waste to energy projects, provides stormwater sampling and staff training services, leads design projects of solids handling and BNR improvements, manages design and construction of wet weather facilities, and other activities associated with Long-Term-Control Plans.
In his spare time, Colin enjoys working on his pheasant farm, serving the town of Phillipston (MA) as a Firefighter/First Responder, hunting and fishing across New England, and living on his homestead in rural Worcester County. Colin is also the former NEWEA Young Professionals committee chair. Colin is an advocate for the environment through his work and his involvement with NEWEA and other local industry associations.
Marina Fernandes, Treatment, Systems Operations and Management Council Director
Bio forthcoming.
Michael Murphy, Innovation Council Director
Michael Murphy is currently the Director of the Water Innovation Council at the New England Water Environment Association (NEWEA) and an independent water tech innovation consultant. Most recently, Michael was the CEO of X2O, an early-stage water quality sensing, and data science company. Michael oversaw all aspects of X2O’s strategy, team building, and technology development. Prior to X2O, Michael was the Director of Water Innovation at the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC), where he provided leadership and strategy development in formulating and delivering on the Massachusetts vision to become a global leader in accelerating cutting-edge water technologies into the market. Before moving to Massachusetts in 2012, Michael worked on water initiatives at The World Bank, Global Environment Facility, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Pacific Institute, United States Business Council for Sustainable Development, and was a Peace Corps volunteer in Bolivia. Of particular note, Michael was invited to attend and participate in the White House Water Summit in 2016 under the Obama Administration. Michael holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Texas State University and an MBA and M.A. from the Middlebury Institute at Monterey.
Amy Anderson George, Meeting Management Council Director
Amy Anderson George is Project Manager our of Arcadis’s Wakefield MA office. She has 16 years of experience in the the municipal wastewater field. She received a B.S. in Environmental Engineering from Roger Williams University. She has been an active member of NEWEA since 2005 and has served as the Chair of both the Exhibits Committee and the Program Committee and a member of the Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers.