Bernie Bauer, associate provost at UBCO, is the new chairman of the Okanagan Water Stewardship Council, following the retirement of the inaugural council chairman Tom Siddon.
Siddon was presented with the first Okanagan Water Leadership Award for his efforts with the council during its initial three years.
Last fall the council produced a sustainable water strategy action plan for the Okanagan, as a result of its first three years of meetings.
This year, new council members have replaced some of the original ones as their first terms came up for renewal.
Siddon made the decision to step down from his position on the council to make more time for family and other activities.
The renewed council is now working, through action committees, on carrying out as many of the 45 action items identified in the water strategy as possible.
Ted Van der Gulik, senior engineer in sustainable agriculture management for the agriculture ministry, was re-elected as co-chairman of the council.
Other council members include representatives from diverse backgrounds, including various professional water associations, groups and industries that have concerns about water use, or that use water, all levels of government and a number of different government ministries.
The council makes recommendations to the Okanagan Basin Water Board, which is made up of one representative from the council, politicians from each of the three regional districts in the valley, a First Nations representative and a professional water utilities representative.
The council’s offices are located in the Central Okanagan Regional District offices in Kelowna.