LOUISVILLE – Citing his leadership and vision as the director of the water and sewer agencies of Greater Cincinnati, which includes the implementation of a complex $3 billion federal program to reduce sewage overflows, Mayor Greg Fischer today named James A. “Tony” Parrott as the new executive director of Louisville’s Metropolitan Sewer District.
Parrott has spent 30 years in the public utility business, starting as a frontline worker at the Department of Environmental Services in Butler County, Ohio and working his way through the ranks, eventually landing the top job first in Butler County and then in Cincinnati, where he oversees wastewater services to 850,000 residents and drinking water services to 1 million customers.
“Tony knows water and wastewater – from the moment it falls from the sky to the moment it’s treated and released back into the environment,” Mayor Greg Fischer said. “He understands the needs of the front-line workers and top management and has earned the respect of both. He is the right leader for our city.”
As Executive Director of Water and Sewer for Greater Cincinnati, his agencies have 1,300 employees with an annual operating budget of $320 million, while also implementing a 20-year, $3 billion wet weather capital improvement program to prevent sewage overflows. Louisville has a similar $800 million federal consent decree.
“It is an honor to be selected by Mayor Fischer to serve the stakeholders of MSD,” Parrott said, “and it is a thrill to come back home to the great state of Kentucky. I am looking forward to working with the staff, the board and the Mayor to make this great organization even better.”
Parrott is a sought-after speaker on a wide-range of topics, such as sustainability through the use of green infrastructure, utilizing public infrastructure projects to spur community revitalization and future affordability of public services. He regularly conducts workshops and serves on panel discussions throughout the county which highlight the important issues and offer potential solutions to challenges in the water and sewer industry today.
Parrott was named Public Administrator of the Year in 2013 by the American Society of Public Administrators and his agency won the 2014 U.S. Water Prize from the U.S. Urban Water Sustainability Council. Most recently, his agency garnered the Platinum Award for Excellence in Management from the National Association of Clean Water Agencies.
Parrott earned a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown College and is an active member of numerous professional organizations, including the American Water Works Association, and the U.S. Urban Water Sustainability Council. He is also a Water Environment Federation Fellow, which is limited to a select number of individuals that have made significant contributions to the industry and the environment.
Mayor Fischer appoints the MSD executive director and the MSD board, meeting next week, will set the salary. Parrot’s first day is September 14.