Director of Water Quality Planning
Kari Gerwin, who has been part of the staff at TMACOG since 2012, has been promoted to the position of director of the Water Quality Planning department after a broad search. She assumed her new job February 1, 2018 following the retirement of Kurt Erichsen.
Kari Gerwin, Director of Water Quality Planning.
She has been managing the Stormwater Coalition, Watersheds Committee, and the Portage River Basin Council and will assume responsibility for the Water Quality Council, the policy-making group that oversees the other committees. She is a northwest Ohio native with bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Toledo.
In her five years as a water quality planner, Gerwin has taken on increasing responsibilities. She assumed management of grants, has hired and supervised interns, and was part of the team that converted the department from Environmental Planning to Water Quality Planning in 2016. “I feel an ownership in our department,” she said. “I’m comfortable stepping into the job. I don’t feel like I’m diving in alone; we are a great staff with excellent skills in research, education, GIS analysis, and administration. There is also so much expertise in our members and partners. I’ll be counting on them as we go forward.”
Gerwin hopes to expand TMACOG’s role in the issues concerning the western Lake Erie basin with a broader collaboration with partners outside of the TMACOG planning area including parts of the watershed in Michigan and Indiana. She sees TMACOG as a place to bring together separate initiatives into a more cohesive structure and to facilitate conversations between urban and rural communities. “To improve conditions in Lake Erie, all partners across the watershed from grass roots organizations to Federal agencies need to work together across boundaries.”
“We can set the bar high for ourselves,” she said. “You don’t always meet every goal but I’ve learned a lot from trying and missing the mark. I’m optimistic about what we can accomplish and very pleased to have this opportunity to play a part in improving our region’s water quality and the health of Lake Erie.”