Ian Smith

Advisor and Senior Training Specialist

Ian has over 30 years of management experience, monitoring the progress of various projects while maintaining his commitment in labour relations matters as a first-line supervisor.

As a technical trainer, Ian has played a role in the creation and development of courses that are in-line with the Ministry of Environment training requirements. He has also conceived, developed, and prepared operations and process manuals for our courses.

  • Water Environment Federation (WEF)
  • Water Environment Association of Ontario (WEAO)
  • Member of the 5S society – Select Society of Sanitary Sludge Shovelers

  • Aboriginal Water and Wastewater Association of Ontario – Appreciation award "For unparalleled dedication to operator training and outstanding contribution to the AWWAO Operations Challenge"
  • Water Environment Federation - William D. Hatfield Award, 2004 “For outstanding performance and professionalism in the operation of a wastewater treatment facility”

Rick Niesink

Course Curriculum Developer

Rick has nearly 30 years of experience working in Wastewater Treatment and Collection for the Region of Niagara. He has worked as a wastewater operator and an operations manager for Niagara's 11 wastewater treatment facilities. Rick's experience extends beyond wastewater treatment, with knowledge in maintenance, industrial waste inspection, biosolids management, and health and safety.

Rick has been active in the Water Environment Association of Ontario (WEAO) since 1997 as a competitor and judge for the Operations Challenge, and has served as a Director for the past 10 years. He also volunteers for Water Environment Federation (WEF) as a judge for the Operations Challenge at WEFTEC, and a participant in the Operators of the Future Working Group.

  • Water Environment Federation (WEF)
  • Water Environment Association of Ontario (WEAO)
  • Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians and Technologists (OACETT)

  • 2009: Awarded the Water Environment Federation's William D. Hatfield Award "In Recognition of Outstanding Performance" on works, operations, management and advancement of knowledge in the field of water pollution control.
  • 2005: Chaired WEAO's Operations Challenge Committee
  • 2006-2009: Director for the WEAO
  • 2009-2016: Chair of the Professional Wastewater Operators Committee (PWO) and representative on WEAO's Board of Directors
  • 2009- Present: Member of the Ministry of Environment & Climate Change (MOECC) Operator Certification Working Group