The Water Quality Forum is a coalition of diverse partners including municipalities, utilities, non-profit organizations and businesses working together to keep our waters in East Tennessee clean. Check out our latest brochure to learn a little bit more about us and details on become a member.
Executive Committee Members
Executive committee is composed of 11 members voted on by the general Water Quality Forum membership to serve 2 year terms on a staggered schedule. The executive committee typically meets monthly and is responsible for operations oversight, fiscal management, etc. Executive Committee members must be members of the Water Quality Forum at the time of appointment.
Debbie is the Manager of Lab Services and Regulatory Compliance at KUB. She has been involved in environmental monitoring work for over 20 years with KUB and previous organizations. Her department at KUB has oversight of regulatory issues that relate to both drinking water and wastewater, including KUB’s Water Quality Program for area waterways. This program helps monitor for and prevent environmental impacts to the streams near the KUB wastewater system. Debbie has been a member of the WQF since she joined KUB in 2001. She believes whether you are part of a corporate or government organization or just an individual that working together we make a difference in water quality..
Ms. Farrell is an engineer at Third Rock Consultants, LLC. She has nine years of experience as a utility engineer. In that role, she gained an understanding of the complex roles that utility managers play balancing water quality and providing customer service. Subsequently, as an employee for the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) in the Watershed Management Division, Ms. Farrell focused on broadening her perspectives to include multiple watersheds with a wide variety of pollutants. Ms. Farrell performed environmental assessments aimed at evaluating load and waste load allocations from pollution sources. She provided technical guidance regarding nonpoint source impacts and mitigation efforts such as streamside buffers, vegetative and structural best management practices, planning techniques and ordinances in the study area. Her expertise coupled with associated modeling efforts, resulted TMDL’s and associated NPDES permits requirements to protect water quality.
Most recently, Ms. Farrell has joined the engineering consulting field and is aggressive about applying her knowledge and skills to benefit Third Rock clientele. Her daily duties involve assisting municipalities with the technicalities of program management and permit compliance. Farrell holds a Bachelors of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Tennessee.
A common theme that spans the spectrum of Ms. Farrell’s professional and personal life, involves working to improve the environment. She firmly believes this is accomplished through a collaboration approach and is most effective when offering your strengths and checking your egos and personal agendas at the door!
Parci Gibson, Knox County Stormwater Management
As the Education and Outreach Coordinator for Knox County Stormwater Management, Ms. Gibson creates educational programs and materials for county employees as well as the general public to increase awareness of water quality issues and what folks can do to reduce stormwater pollution. She works closely with the other members of the stormwater team to ensure that Knox County is in compliance with all state and federal regulations as they relate to the Clean Water Act.
Prior to working with Knox County, Ms. Gibson worked for two local watershed organizations and was a classroom teacher. Ms. Gibson currently serves on several local watershed educational committees and serves as Co-Chair of the Tennessee Stormwater Association’s Education, Training and Professional Development committee. Gibson holds a BA in Liberal Arts, a MS in Secondary Education and a BS in Biosystems Engineering from the University of Tennessee.
Chris Granju, Knox County Stormwater Management
Mr. Granju serves as the Stormwater Management Director for Knox County, Tennessee. His department has oversight for policy development, plans review, construction inspection, floodplain regulation, water quality monitoring, environmental regulation, developing public involvement and education initiatives related to water quality, and a variety of other programs related to Knox County’s EPA NPDES Phase II MS4 permitting. He is a native Knoxvillian, received a BS in Civil Engineering from the University of Tennessee, is a licensed Professional Engineer, and currently serves as President of the Tennessee Stormwater Association (TNSA). He has 19 years of experience in civil and environmental engineering including private consulting, design, regulatory plans review, project management and department management for a local government developing a Stormwater Management program. Chris has been an active member and supporter of the Water Quality Forum since 1995 and considers the partnerships developed through the Forum to be invaluable to the development and administration of a municipal stormwater department. He lives in the Knoxville area with his wife, Melissa, and two children and is a seasoned expert on restoring small Italian cars as well as an avid cyclist.
Ruth Anne Hanahan has worked for the Tennessee Water Resources Research Center (TN WRRC) for 16 years developing and/or conducting model community-based watershed education and outreach programs and initiatives that support local municipalities’ efforts to comply with the Clean Water Act stormwater requirements. These programs and initiatives have targeted both adult and youth populations and have included, but have not been limited to, Knox County Adopt-A-Watershed that annually engages approximately 1800 students service-learning projects; Water Quality Forum’s Adopt-A-Stream that is now implemented throughout the City, County and Town of Farragut; and the development of campus-based outdoor classrooms. Ruth Anne also was a primary founder of the statewide Tennessee Yards & Neighborhoods (TYN) program that she now co-directs. TYN is a statewide program that helps to guide and assist the homeowner in the application of environmentally friendly landscaping practices. Ruth Anne also oversees a seven-member AmeriCorps team to help carry out local water quality initiatives.
Jake Hudson, Fort Loudoun Lake Association Zone Manager
Jake was raised in Kingsport, Tennessee and graduated from Dobyns-Bennett High School. He attended the Georgia Institute of Technology as a Mathematics major, but changed to Engineering. After dropping out in his sophomore year, Jake worked in Nashville at Tree Recording Studio, and then spent a year at East Tennessee State University as a pre-law student. He was drafted and spent the next three years in the United States Army. He rose to the rank of First Lieutenant, then Field Artillery, and ended his military career as a Battalion Executive Officer. Jake worked at various jobs and attended U T off and on from 1970 to 1977, when he finally graduated with a Bachelor’s of Fine Art in Sculpture and Printmaking.
After graduation, Jake worked in construction in Knoxville as a Carpenter and as a Field Engineer, until 1985 when he went to work for the City of Knoxville Engineering Department. He spent 21 years as a Storm Water Technician and retired from the City to go work for the Fort Loudoun Lake Association. His office is now a 20-foot jon boat with a 90-horsepower outboard motor. Jake has the best job in Knoxville, as a garbage man on a boat.
Jake and his wife, Becky Wade, live in an 81 year old Tudor Revival house in Lindbergh Forest, which is on the Historic Register, and keeps him very busy. His outside interests include gardening, cooking, woodworking, reading and playing with his three granddaughters.
Amy Mann, Knox County Soil Conservation District
Amy Mann has worked for the Knox County Soil Conservation District / USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service since 2008. Amy helps farmers design conservation plans and apply for state and federal grant funds to implement Ag BMPs on local farms to reduce soil erosion and improve water quality with the goal of removing local streams from the TDEC’s 303(d) list. She also works closely with several local watershed organizations to improve water quality in specific watersheds, often with the use of Clean Water Act Section 319(h) grant funds. Amy has been the Treasurer of the Lower Clinch Watershed Council and the Smoky Mountain Resource Conservation & Development Council since 2008 in addition to representing the Knox County Soil Conservation District on the Beaver Creek Task Force, Stock Creek Watershed Committee, the Bullrun Creek Restoration Partnership and the Knox County Agribusiness Committee. Amy brings a unique perspective to the Forum, combining an agricultural water quality career with a marketing background to promote and enhance Water Quality Forum initiatives. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a BA in Journalism in 2002.
Martin currently works for Knox County Stormwater Department. He began his experience with the Water Quality Forum as an Americorps Water Quality Team member in 1996. Since that time he has participated in numerous Water Quality Forum initiatives and related activities which include River Rescue, Water Fest, Adopt-A-Watershed, Adopt-A-Stream, Clean Protect Restore, Stock Creek Initiative, Beaver Creek Initiative, Bullrun Creek Initiative, Environmental Stewardship Program and many more related projects which include streambank restoration and water quality sampling. He has chaired the Water Quality Forum Technical Committee. He has learned many important things through his work with the Water Quality Forum and has gained a deeper understanding of what it takes to improve our waterways. He is grateful for the opportunities he has had and looks forward to serving this organization further.
Jason Scott, Town of Farragut Stormwater Matters
Mr. Scott has managed the Town of Farragut’s Stormwater Matters water quality program since 2008. Before coming to the Town of Farragut, Scott interned with the St Johns River Water Management district on a water withdrawal study while completing his graduate coursework in Environmental Policy and Management. A two-term former AmeriCorps member and visual artist, Scott is a dynamic advocate for national service, creative partnerships and water quality in the region.
John Shubzda, City of Knoxville Stormwater Management
John was born in 1970 in Plains, PA. He grew up with two older brothers, Jeff and Jim. John graduated from Coughlin High School in 1988 and went on to Penn State. John graduated from Penn State in 1992 with a degree in Environmental Resource Management. He then went on 9 week Organization for Tropical Studies coarse in Costa Rica. He then came back to the states and moved to TN to take a job at the University of TN as Senior Research Technician working in the Smoky Mountains National Park. For 11 years, John worked on that project earning his way up to a Research Associate. During this time, John worked on graduate programs in Ecology and Geography. John as several peer reviewed publications on stream chemistry, soils, acid deposition, etc. John currently works as a Stormwater Engineering Technician III for the City of Knoxville. His duties include stormwater education coordinator, industrial inspector, and drain consultant for the Love Creek watershed. John and his wife of ten years, Julie, have one son, Tyler, who is 7 years old, live on a small horse farm in Blaine, TN. John is an avid chef, fisherman, wild mushroom gatherer, and hunter.
Liz Upchurch, Tennessee Valley Authority
Liz’s bio is coming soon.
Meeting Minutes | Executive Committee Member Page Login