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About presenters

Justin Kauffman began his career as an operator at water and wastewater plants throughout southeastern Pennsylvania. Over the past 20 years, he has held a number of positions within large engineering firms as well as private utility organizations. His expertise centers around bridging operational and spatial data to inform decision-making. He brings a depth of knowledge having implemented numerous enterprise work management and GIS systems as well as led asset management and process improvement programs.

Kauffman currently serves as the director of asset management and field services for Aqua America. In this role, he oversees the Asset Management (AM) Program and works closely with the GIS department, aligning core goals with the application and adoption of GIS across Aqua's operations. One of the current goals is to create a single source of truth for the company's asset registry within GIS and provide a direct link to operational work and asset data. This effort is seen as foundational to driving a data-driven strategy. Underlying his passion for providing practical solutions, Kauffman puts a strong value on working with and supporting people. He sees them as the greatest asset to the organization.

Frank Grablutz is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in civil engineering and has 35 years of experience in the water and wastewater industry. He worked for 16 years with a national engineering consulting company on a wide variety of projects. On many of those projects he recommended that clients implement GIS to improve data management and decision-making.

For the last 19 years, Grablutz has worked for Aqua America, a large, investor-owned water and wastewater utility company operating across eight states. He has managed the GIS program at Aqua since 2005 and finally gotten the opportunity to put his GIS recommendations into practice. Grablutz and a former consulting colleague led the creation of the GIS program at Aqua. The combination of Grablutz's engineering and data management background with the consultant's GIS expertise provided an ideal framework for the development of a practical and functional system that met the business needs of the company. The GIS now includes more than 16,000 miles of pipe across the nearly 1,800 water and wastewater systems that Aqua owns and has become integral to Aqua's operations and asset management activities.

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