Michael Griffith

Michael Griffith holds his award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for excellence in operating a large public drinking water system at Frostburg’s water filtration facility.

FROSTBURG — Michael Griffith, operator of Frostburg’s water filtration facilities, has been honored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as the mid-Atlantic recipient of the award for excellence in operating a large public drinking water system.

Griffith is employed by Maryland Environmental Services Inc., the company hired by the city to operate the plant.

“A lot of people don’t realize how instrumental Mike was in helping to design the water treatment plant,” said City Administrator John Kirby. “He is a dedicated, talented person who has been at the facility for a long time and is a key part of the whole water system.”

There are nearly 2,500 water customers within the city limits. The city also sells water to the county for distribution to small, nearby communities.

“Public drinking water plant operators like Michael Griffith are our first line of defense against waterborne contamination that can cause serious, even fatal illnesses,” said William Early of the EPA. “This award honors the excellence of highly qualified, trained professionals who have the expertise to operate water treatment plants and improve water quality.”

Because of Griffith’s leadership and direction, the system has maintained perfect compliance since 1997. Griffith determined the most cost-effective approach for reducing disinfectant byproducts and utilizing water flow to the plant to generate electricity, according to Early.

Large water treatment plants are those serving more than 3,300 customers, according to EPA guidelines. The awards were created in 2006.

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