Project Awards

All applicants must be a member in good standing of AWBD. All applications must be accompanied by a resolution adopted by the Board of Directors and be received by October 31, 2023.

The purpose of this program is to encourage our membership to share information about the wonderful projects that the districts are accomplishing that will improve and enhance the lives of our constituents. These projects must have been completed within the past three years from the date of the application.

The recipients will be judged by category within one of the five award divisions based on the response to the questions under the Summary Review. Applications will be judged by a panel of professionals with experience in the field and the winners will be announced at our Mid-Winter Conference in January 2024.

All applications are due no later than October 31, 2023, to the office at 4:00 pm. Applications will be accepted digitally or printed format.

Please send your application to:

The 2021 Project Award recipients consisted of (top to bottom), Timber Lane Utility District, Harris County MUD 346, Clear Lake Water Authority and Harris County MUD 173. 

Visions Award

History:  began in 1992 with the Award going to:
Joe B. Allen, Jim Box, Bill Callegari, Bill Corsbie, Myrtle Cruz, Gary Nathanson, and Julien Reeves.

The Visions Award has been given to many individuals in the industry over the past 29 years.  The award is given to those who have made significant contributions to the AWBD, to its members directly, and toward improving the entire water/wastewater industry.  There have been years when the award was not given out and most years where one or more people have received the award.

The Board of Directors of the AWBD has always taken suggestions from the Executive Director, AWBD Board Members, and consultants to the AWBD.  The Board President/Executive Director have collected the suggestions and presented them to the BOD at a meeting for discussion.  The board then votes on a candidate(s) and the award is presented at the Annual AWBD Conference in the summer. The award is usually a surprise to the recipient, however, every effort is made to ensure that person will be there for the presentation at the conference.  

The criteria for this award as follows:

  • Have demonstrated that they  have made significant contributions to the AWBD, to its members directly, and to the entire water community.
    • Increased the awareness of good works and contributions by these Special Districts.
    • Improved the efficiencies of Special Districts through improved processes and procedures.
    • Represented the industry as an important and vital entity for the community.
    • Demonstrated collaboration with outside entities to create projects, improve efficiencies or promote accomplishments of Special Districts.
    • Made great personal sacrifice of time/talents to AWBD and the industry for overall good works and contributions.
  • Have not received the award in the past.
  • Not a member of the current AWBD Board of Directors.

The 2022 Visions Awards recipients consisted of (top to bottom), David Neil, Neil Technical Services, Lynne B. Humphries, Partner, Allen Boone Humphries & Robinson and Honorable Jim Murphy, State Rep. for Texas House  District 133 

Leonard Legacy Award

Overview: Merry Leonard has served as a MUD Director since the mid 70s.  Leonard was elected to the AWBD Board of Trustees in the early 80s and served in various offices, including President. In 1993, she was hired as the AWBDs first full-time employee and was later named Executive Director.  Although, she retired from AWBD in 2020, she continues to serve on a MUD.  Leonard has always believed in the value of service and the power of districts and their directors to make positive and enduring impacts on their communities. The Leonard Legacy Award honors a water district director who champion a district’s efforts to make their part of the world better.

  • AWBD will send Member Consultant Firms (“Member Firm”) nomination forms;
  • Nominations must be sent to; to preserve the integrity of the nominations process do not send applications to any recipient or address;
  • AWBD staff will accept the first two nominations by a Member Firm (confirming receipt) and will reject subsequent applications;
  • Nominations are anonymous and confidential. The identity of the nominating firm will not be disclosed by AWBD to anyone other than AWBD staff. AWBD staff will provide the nomination forms without the coversheet to AWBD’s judges;
  • Nomination applications for the award will be considered for an additional 2 years beyond original submission.

Criteria: To be eligible for the Leonard Legacy Award, the nominee must:

  • Be a current Board Member on an AWBD Member District;
  • Have served as a director for at least 10 total years on one or more water district boards;
  • Have championed as a director (not a consultant) one or more district initiatives that provided positive,
    enduring impacts on the community that the district(s) serves;
  • Have exhibited outstanding character, setting a high bar in personal and professional conduct and
    demonstrating the value of service in the community; and
  •  Not be a current AWBD employee nor AWBD Board Member.

The 2022 Leonard Legacy Award recipient was Robert Squires, Harris County MUD 55


  • Nominations are due by Monday, April 10, 2023. (Please note AWBD Office is closed for Easter). 
  • Finalists will be announced on Wednesday, May 17, 2023 (AWBD May Board Meeting)
  • The Leonard Legacy Award will be announced on Saturday, June 24, 2023, at Awards Luncheon