Originally known as the Kuehnast Award, the Dave Ford Water Resources Award was created in 2003, renamed for esteemed DNR hydrologist Dave Ford, who died prematurely from cancer in January 2003. Dave Ford was highly regarded by his water resources colleagues, who sought to honor him with an award to be presented to others in the field who also have made an indelible impact on Minnesota’s environmental landscape. Dave had an excellent theoretical understanding of various computer simulation models, along with the practical knowledge to effectively use those models to address a variety of water resource management issues. But, more importantly, he was a teacher, a mentor, a collaborator and a friend.
Past Award recipients of Earl Kuehnast Award
Past award recipients of the renamed Dave Ford Water Resources Award
|2003||Heinz G. Stefan||2013||John Gulliver|
|2005||Marcel Jouseau||2014||Roland Sigurdson|
|2006||Ron Harnack||2015||Bruce Wilson (Respec)|
|2007||Patrick Brezonik||2016||Cliff Aichinger|
|2008||Steve Heiskary||2017||Dan R. Engstrom, Kent Johnson|
|2009||James L. Anderson||2018||Suzanne Jiwani|
|2010||Nels Nelson||2019||Al Kean, Bruce Montgomery|
|2011||Timothy Scherkenbach||2020||Deb Swackhamer|
|2012||Barbara Liukkonen||2021||Mike Trojan|
Dave Ford Award Criteria
To be considered for the annual Award for Outstanding Achievement in Water Resources, an individual should have an extended history of contributing to the betterment of water resources in Minnesota. Nominees can be from any discipline and can represent aspects such as research, administration, engineering, etc.
- The Water Resources Award honors a person for significant long-term achievement or public service in Water Resource management, who exhibits the collaborative leadership style of Dave Ford.
- Lifetime achievement can be within the person’s agency or company. Water resource achievements outside the agency/firm receive extra credit. Unpaid public service in water resources also receives extra credit.
- The award is for professionals and other related disciplines working in water resources. Politicians and current members of the Planning Committee are excluded.
- There will only be an award when there is agreement that an individual truly has made a significant contribution to Minnesota Water Resources. In some years, there will not be an award. In some years, more than one award may be given.
- While the award is generally for lifetime achievement, it (or some other recognition) can be given to an individual for a particularly important one-time contribution to Minnesota Water Resources.
Dave Ford Award Nomination Submission
To submit a nomination, prepare a statement (up to 500 words) responding to each of the following:
Describe the nominee’s individual accomplishments contributing to the betterment of Minnesota’s water resources, within and beyond his or her organization(s). Include public service and volunteer activities, if applicable.
Describe how the nominee has contributed to the success of the people working with and around him or her through collaboration, inclusive leadership, and mentoring.
The Minnesota Water Resources Conference collects nominations for the Dave Ford Award year-round. Nominations received by the third Friday in April will be considered for the current calendar year's conference. Following that date, all nominations will be considered starting in for the following calendar year. Nominations not selected for an award the first year they are considered will remain active for two additional years.
The current year’s awardee will be announced on this webpage each September 1.