Water Well Journal

April 2015

Water Well Journal

Issue link: http://read.dmtmag.com/i/482464

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Page 24 of 67

N ational Ground Water Association officially named Lauren Schapker as its second-ever government affairs director to replace Christine Reimer, who retired after starting the position in 1993. Schapker began with NGWA on November 1, 2014, leav- ing her position as director of government and political affairs for the Portland Cement Association— an organization she joined in September 2009. Prior to joining the PCA, she was a senior policy adviser for Xenophon Strategies, a firm that provides govern- ment relations and public affairs services. She has a B.S. in finance and an M.A. in political science from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. While Reimer worked out of NGWA's Ohio headquarters, Schapker is working year-round in Washington, D.C. "Ms. Schapker brings a wealth of experience, a strategic mind-set, and a can-do attitude that will serve NGWA and its members well," says NGWA CEO Kevin McCray, CAE. "We were impressed with her proven experience at taking on leg- islative challenges and finding effective ways to achieve goals. "We look forward to applying her determination and re- sourcefulness to advancing the interests of the groundwater industry, which is vital to our nation's industry, agriculture, rural living, and the environment," McCray adds. Schapker's chief responsibilities are: • Guide NGWA on its federal legislative and regulatory strategy and agenda • Help develop policy positions • Assist in developing federal initiatives that benefit ground- water and its businesses and professions • Provide information on groundwater and the groundwater industry to members of Congress and staff of relevant federal agencies • Understand and ensure NGWA meets requirements related to federal lobbying laws • Represent NGWA where necessary on government affairs- related issues. Water Well Journal: As this is your first year as government affairs director for NGWA, what are your initiatives for 2015? Lauren Schapker: The government affairs program had sev- eral successes in 2014 I'd like to build on in 2015. First and foremost, support for the National Ground-Water Monitoring Network is a key priority. Since funding was achieved in 2014, growing that funding to allow for greater implementation is a goal. In addition, support for the geothermal heat pump industry is another objective for this year, considering the push for Congress to pass energy efficiency legislation. NGWA will continue to support funding for geoscience research and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education and will join with the Water Systems Council and other allies in support of the Water Well Cost Savings Act. While issues advocacy will be the number one priority for the government affairs program, having a robust political action committee and a vibrant grassroots network will also be key to success in 2015 and beyond. WWJ: Your predecessor, Christine Reimer, retired after 31 years working at NGWA headquarters in Westerville, Ohio. You're working out of Washington, D.C., and you attended several "welcome" events for new members of Congress. What are you doing to familiarize these members about NGWA? SCHAPKER continues on page 24 Twitter @WaterWellJournl WWJ April 2015 23 Lauren Schapker GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS Q&A (Above) Lauren Schapker speaking with members at the 2014 NGWA ® Groundwater Expo and Annual Meeting. Getting to Know NGWA's Lauren Schapker

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