January 24, 2020

Fellow Diplomates: It was my great honor to serve as your AAWRE Board President this past year (2018-2019).  I continue to be impressed by the accomplishments of Water Resources Engineers who are Diplomates, and the credentials of those who seek board certification from the American Academy of Water Resources Engineers.

You should be aware of an on-going study to create a new civil engineering credential that will include different specialty areas, with water resources possibly being one. The goal of this initiative is to provide a credential that signifies satisfaction of the Civil Engineering Body of Knowledge, version 3.  The proposal is based on the concept state licensure no longer represents a level of expertise needed for entry to the civil engineering profession and a follow-on credential is needed to fill this gap.  If implemented, the proposal will replace the current ASCE post-licensure Academies, including AAWRE, with a single Academy to administer a new civil engineering certification program.  As the proposal is in development, the continuation of current or future D.WRE certifications has not been determined.

The current activity of the ASCE Task Committee on Credentialing (TCC) is the conduct of a market study of the credentialing proposal with engineers and employers.  A brief on the proposal to the ASCE Board is planned for some time in 2020.  If you receive a request to participate in this market study, I encourage you to thoughtfully do so.  The idea of licensure alone not meeting the needs of the civil engineering profession is a topic long under consideration by ASCE, formally under the Raise the Bar program.  This initiative may provide an important new direction for our profession, so your input can be very helpful.  For additional information, contact Ms Kelly Dooley ([email protected]) on ASCE staff.

As I depart the president position, I extend my sincere thanks to the dedicated members of the AAWRE Board.  These individuals volunteer their expertise and time, often at personal expense, to promote and uphold our profession. In particular, the past three years has been a period of review and implementation of new AAWRE policies and procedures to become consistent with similar experience and education based credentials (e.g., licensure).  While some of the changes may seem regimented looking from the outside, they are solely intended to provide consistency with practices by ASCE and licensure boards. To this end, we are most fortunate to have Dr. Vijay Singh serve as the new AAWRE President and lead the Academy in the next phase of implementation.

Even with the progress by AAWRE in conveying the Diplomate status as a credential based on accomplishment and not an honorific title, the message needs further promotion.  I encourage you to use your D.WRE title in correspondence, signature blocks, and presentations.  Getting the next generation of Water Resources Engineers and their employers and customers to ask about the D.WRE is essential for messaging what board certification as a Water Resources Engineers can mean.

Best regards for 2020,
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Joe D. Manous, Ph.D., P.E., D.WRE, F.EWRI, F.ASCE
AAWRE 2019 President