The Osceola Water Works Board works hard to provide the community safe, good-tasting water at a reasonable price. Here is a quick snapshot of your five Osceola Water Works Board Members!

 

294213_10150521499104498_875240205_nMy name is Laura Castro, my family and I have been part of the Osceola community since January 2001. During my free time I like to spend time with my family, work out and I watch comedy series on Netflix. Currently I work as an Administrative Assistant at Clarke County Public Health. My responsibilities range from overseeing our Vaccines For Children Immunization, our Care For Yourself Program that provides breast and cervical cancer screenings for women who are underinsured, have no insurance, or whose deductibles are too high to afford services. I joined the Osceola Water Board because I saw an opportunity to help my community with the challenges of an ever growing city, as well as to educate the public about the services Osceola Water Works offers and the efforts they make to continue to provide high quality water to our population.

 

Wells Fargo PicGreetings!  My name is Alisha Kale and I have been in the Osceola area since 1997.  I live here with my husband, Todd, our four children, and three dogs.  In my professional work I am a Vice President for Wells Fargo & Co. My role within the organization is a Business Process Engineer.  What is Business Process Engineering? Business process engineering is a way in which organizations study their current business processes and develop new methods to improve productivity, efficiency, and operational costs. As a business process engineer, we examine the way an organization operates, its long-term performance goals, and recommend ways it can work more seamlessly to achieve overall improvement. Many business process engineers work as consultants contracted by companies seeking improvements to their methodology and infrastructure. I started my career with 15 years in the Manufacturing industry before moving into the Service industry.  I received my Bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University and my Master in Six Sigma from Villanova University.  I hold the following certifications: Certified Project Manager (CPM), Certified Facilitator, and Certified Six Sigma Master Black Belt (CSSMBB).  When I’m not working I enjoy volunteering, reading, researching, traveling, and spending time with my family. During my service to the Board of Trustees I would like to continue to develop internal performance goals, improve our efficiencies and effectiveness, and ensure that we are providing the best service to our community within the best operating costs.  My goal is the improve our processes and procedures so we can provide services at the most affordable cost.

 

osceola water works board, MacKenzie O'HairMy name is MacKenzie O’Hair. I have lived in Osceola for the past 9 years with my husband, Patrick, and my two children, Liam and Everly. In my spare time, I love being with my family, “junking”, decorating and traveling. My hope while being on the Osceola Water Works Board is to bring my perspective and experience as a small business owner to help shape and build a water works department that is run efficiently and is every cognizant of rates and the use of funds. My top priority is ensuring that we have safe, “clean” water and thatg we achieve that goal in the most cost effective and logical approach. We have made extensive progress over the last few years and I am very proud of the staff and organization as a whole. The job is not always easy, but everyone seems to handle it with poise and true grit to keep moving forward, making positive progress for Osceola Water Works and the community as a whole.

 

 

Osceola Water Works Board Member Mark BinningMy name is Mark Binning, born and raised in rural Leon, Iowa and I graduated from Central Decatur in May, 1972. In July of 1972, I started to work at Miller Products Company in Osceola in the shipping department.   In September 1973, I married my wife Vickie. We have one daughter, Christine who is married to Mark Baker. The Baker family lives in Ames and has three sons; Kenny, Max and Isaac. I continued my carrier at Miller Products until 1985 when I transferred to sales and marketing at Mac-Landen Inc. Mac-Landen Inc. was a subsidiary of Miller Products both owned by the McFarland family. I continued at Mac-Landen until September 2005. I then worked the next three years for Carriage House Cabinetry doing custom wood working. In November 2008, I returned to sales at C & C Cycle in Chariton, IA selling motorcycles and off road equipment. In January 2016, I semi-retired and continue to work two days per week. I am a member of the Osceola United Methodist Church and have actively served on various committees. I have also served on the Osceola Preservation Committee and Friends of the Depot. In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my grandchildren, playing golf, woodworking and doing yard work. As a resident of Osceola for the past thirty-seven years, I am grateful for the opportunity I have had earning a living, raising a family and enjoying a quality life here. None of that would have been possible without an adequate water system. Having worked in manufacturing in Osceola for thirty-three years, I understand the importance of a reliable and affordable water supply. Water is necessary to sustain existing businesses as well as a future economic growth.

 

larry bishop osceola water works board memberLarry K. Bishop, I was born and raised in Norwalk, Iowa, graduated from Norwalk Community Schools in 1967. I then continued my education at United Electronics Institute located in West Des Moines, Iowa, graduating in 1969. During this time, I married my wife Ruth in the spring of 1968. After graduating, I went to work at Texas Instruments located in Houston, Texas, designing and testing electronic systems for airborne radar units for the United States Army. During this time, we had two sons, Timothy in 1969 and Marcus in 1971. At the conclusion of the Vietnam War, I left Texas Instruments and joined Honeywell in their MICRO SWITCH™ division located in Freeport, Illinois. I had various jobs while at Honeywell, from an Electronic Technician in the Solid State Keyboard group, and Quality Engineer in the Automotive and Commercial Pressure Sensor group, moving into Product Management (Marketing), then as an Application Engineer and then moving into the Special Product Management group. I was in Honeywell 37 years and at this time they moved all of the engineering jobs to Bangalore, India and my employment was over with at Honeywell. During this time, our family grew with two daughters-in-law and five grandsons. Five months later, I was hired by a small Pressure Sensor, Incremental Encoder and Position Sensor firm as their Regional Sales Manager covering all of the Midwest States. I held this position for 7 years until my retirement in January 2015. I have since been employed by Jackson Roofing and Construction located in Osceola, Iowa as their Project Engineer. I have an avocation of officiating High School sports working Football (42 years) and Basketball (41 years) with additional sports in High School and College for Softball, Baseball and Soccer. Since my wife and I have lived in the Osceola area for the past 6 years, I have seen firsthand the infrastructure weakness of the water resource area and the city wide water system. Water is very important for everyday use and survival. My feeling is with my prior engineering background, I can contribute to improving the infrastructure, the many uses of the system we have today and what can be done to provide clean water in a very reliable way. Security of the water shed is something we should be considering as well in today’s climate of unrest.

The members of the Osceola Water Works Board live and work in your community, so if you see them around town, be sure to say, “Hi!” and to thank them for all they do for Osceola!

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2 Comments
  1. How is the water source in reference to blue- green bloom and toxins?

    • Paul,

      First of all, I wanted to apologize for not responding to you quicker, I have been out of town. Over the last several years, Osceola Water Works has seen an increase of algae problems in West Lake, which is where Osceola receives their drinking water. Over the last 3-5 years, we have started to see some blue green algae growth in the lake as well. The increased rain fall over the last few years has led to large nutrient loading in the lake allowing the algae to thrive.

      In May, we were contacted by the IDNR about a voluntary Microcystin Monitoring Program. Microcystins are a class of toxins produced by certain cyanobacteria. I discussed this program with the water board and we decided to volunteer to be a participant. Microcystins can be produced in large quantities during algae blooms and pose a major threat to drinking water supplies. We currently are taking weekly samples through this program. Several other communities are also currently participating in this study. Because blue green algae blooms have become a larger issue, the IDNR is conducting this study to learn more about this issue throughout the state.

      To date we currently are below the required .3 ug/L in the raw water. Which means at this point we will continue to monitor the raw water for one year. If we see levels detected higher than the .3 amount we will be triggered to conduct finished water sampling as well.

      We are currently using Sodium Percarbonate to aid in preventing blue green algae growth in our lake. So, at this point I would say the water source in Osceola is at a manageable level in reference to blue green algae and Microcystin levels.

      Please feel free to contact me with any further questions.

      Thank you,
      Brandon Patterson
      Water Superintendent
      Osceola Water Works
      208 W. Jefferson St., P.O. Box 515
      Osceola, IA 50213
      Office: (641) 342-1435
      Cell: (641) 414-9374
      Fax #: (641) 342-1588
      E-mail: osceolawater2@windstream.net