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WSWRA Honors Members With Awards at Annual Conference

The Washington State Water Resources Association (WSWRA), the coordinating agency for irrigation districts in Washington state, honored three of its longtime members at its annual conference awards luncheon on December 5 at the Davenport Hotel in Spokane, Washington.

The Washington State Water Resources Association (WSWRA), the coordinating agency for irrigation districts in Washington state, honored three of its longtime members at its annual conference awards luncheon on December 5 at the Davenport Hotel in Spokane, Washington.

The WSWRA Water Resources Leadership Award was presented to Dave Solem by past WSWRA President Darvin Fales. Dave is the manager of the South Columbia Basin Irrigation District (SCBID), located in Pasco, Washington. Dave has been manager of the SCBID since 2010 and had previously been the manager of the Klamath Irrigation District in Klamath Falls, Oregon, for more than 28 years. Dave is a past president of WSWRA and is also a past president of the Oregon Water Resources Congress, where he served two terms as president. Dave represents WSWRA on the board of directors of the National Water Resources Association (NWRA) and is a cochair of its environmental task force. Dave also serves on the advisory committee of the Family Farm Alliance.

WSWRA honored attorney Larry Martin with its Distinguished Service Award. The award was presented by Sunnyside Valley Irrigation District (SVID) Manager Lori Brady. Larry represents numerous irrigation districts, water companies, municipalities, and private individuals in Washington and Oregon, including SVID and the Roza-Sunnyside Board of Joint Control. Larry is a partner in the firm Halverson Northwest, based in Yakima, Washington. He has been practicing law since 1989 and has spent three decades working on issues related to the Yakima River adjudication along with his diverse natural resources– and local government–based practice. Larry serves on the WSWRA and NWRA boards of directors. He is also on the WSWRA executive committee and is a cochair of the NWRA litigation review and regulatory committees.

Lori Brady presents Larry Martin with the WSWRA Distinguished Service Award.
Rick Dieker presents Jim Milton with the WSWRA Distinguished Service Award.
Darvin Fales presents Dave Solem with the WSWRA Water Resources Leadership Award.

The WSWRA Distinguished Service Award was presented to Jim Milton by Yakima-Tieton Irrigation District Manager Rick Dieker. Jim received his undergraduate degrees from the University of Washington in naval science and civil engineering and his master of science in civil engineering from the University of Washington. He was a commissioned officer in the U.S. Navy and served on the USS Manatee in Vietnam and on the USS Tulare as a boat group commander. Jim was later employed by the Washington State Department of Ecology for 26 years. He earned a second master’s degree in business administration from City University. Jim has served as the executive director of the Tri-County Water Resources Agency and then the Yakima Basin Water Resources Agency and has been a director for the YTID since 2005. Jim has been a lifelong leader and advocate water resources issues.

WSWRA recognizes, commends, and thanks its award recipients for all their efforts on behalf of the association and water resources in Washington State. 

Tom Myrum is the executive director of the Washington State Water Resources Association. For more information about WSWRA, visit wswra.org.