J. Kevin Ward

J. Kevin Ward

As the executive administrator of the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB), Mr. Ward serves as the chief executive officer of a state agency employing over 300 scientists, engineers, lawyers, GIS professionals, finance officers, and related support staff. Under the direction of a six-member board appointed by the governor, the TWDB is responsible for planning the statewide development of water resources, financing water-related infrastructure, and maintaining and disseminating natural resource data for Texas, which includes water-bearing formations and watersheds. Mr. Ward was appointed to his current position in May 2002.Since 1997, the TWDB has coordinated with the state’s 16 planning regions to produce a state water plan every five years, which guides the development and use of water supplies for Texas for the ensuing 50 year period. The TWDB also administers several significant financial assistance programs. The Economically Distressed Areas Program provides grants for first-time water and sewer service to impoverished areas of the state. The Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds use a combination of Environmental Protection Agency capitalization grants and state match bonds to provide low-interest loans for water quality and water supply projects to ensure compliance with state and federal regulations. The Water Infrastructure Fund provides low-interest and deferred-interest loans for preconstruction and construction costs of major water supply projects included in the state water plan. In addition, the TWDB administers significant science programs, which include collecting data, developing empirical volumetric models for groundwater formations, and determining environmental flow needs of significant stream segments and bays and estuaries. The TWDB purchases digital aerial orthoimagery and LIDAR to maintain the Strategic Mapping System dataset and to assist in floodplain mapping for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Mr. Ward serves on the board of the Council of Infrastructure Financing Authorities (CIFA) and was an active participant on the State/Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) State Revolving Fund workgroup several years ago for implementing the Clean and Drinking Water SRF programs. He was also the presiding officer on the Water Conservation Implementation Task Force, created through Senate Bill 1094, 78th Texas Legislature, which produced the Report to the 79th Legislature and the Best Management Practices Guide to encourage increased use of conservation throughout the state. Mr. Ward served on the Advisory Committee of the Caroline and William N. Lehrer Distinguished Chair in Water Engineering, established by the Agriculture Program and the Agricultural Engineering Department of Texas A&M University, which selected the first Water Resources Engineering professor in the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering.During his 21-year tenure with the TWDB, he has served in several capacities, including financial analyst, finance section chief, and development fund manager. He served in various management positions in the agency, specializing in the development and implementation of the financial aspects of the TWDB’s State Revolving Fund loan programs. From March 1996 to April 2002, Mr. Ward served as the TWDB’s deputy executive administrator for the Office of Project Finance and Construction Assistance. Immediately prior to joining the TWDB, Mr. Ward was an officer and controller for two management consulting firms in Austin, both serving a client base of water and wastewater municipal utility districts and water supply corporations.Mr. Ward received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Accounting from the University of Texas at Austin in 1982.