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American Water Optimizes Leadership Talent to Advance New Jersey, National Environmental Priorities and Further Enhance Customer Experiences

CAMDEN, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--

American Water has named Cheryl Norton president of New Jersey American Water and senior vice president of its Eastern Division effective March 25, 2019. Norton replaces Deborah Degillio, who has been named chief customer officer of American Water. Kevin Kirwan was recently named chief environmental officer for American Water.

“Environmental leadership is a core American Water value,” said Susan Story, CEO of American Water. “New Jersey is a national leader in addressing water quality, emerging contaminants, and sustainability of water supply and infrastructure. We are very excited to partner with the state, and all of our states, in ongoing efforts to develop innovative solutions to water quality, supply and infrastructure issues.

“Cheryl has a 31-year career at the company, having held several environmental leadership roles including running the company’s nationally recognized central environmental testing lab in Illinois for seven years. She has also served as president of both Missouri American Water and Kentucky American Water, as well as vice president of Operations for Illinois American Water.

“Deb’s experience and 20-year career make her the perfect person to lead our efforts to deploy top- class customer service and customer experiences through process and technology enhancements. Having served as president of New Jersey American Water and of American Water Enterprises (our market-based businesses), and with her deep financial experience, Deb understands key customer touch points such as service and billing, and knows how to optimize technology investments.

“And lastly, Kevin Kirwan’s 38 years of operations, engineering and water quality experience in New Jersey, and his strong background in developing and deploying practical technology to serve customers, make him the perfect leader for this critical role for us.”

Norton has been president of Missouri American Water, the company’s third largest state, serving 1.5 million people, since 2015, and prior to that was president of Kentucky American Water serving approximately half a million people. She was also vice president of Operations for Illinois American Water, responsible for all aspects of providing high-quality water and wastewater services to over 1.2 million people throughout the state of Illinois.

From 2000 to 2007, Norton served as laboratory director for American Water’s Central Laboratory in Belleville, Ill., which houses both water quality testing and R&D efforts. Norton has been with American Water since 1988, when she began her career as a research technician at the American Water Central Laboratory conducting microbiological research related to improved water treatment techniques.

Norton received a bachelor’s degree in biology and a master’s degree in environmental studies from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville.

Degillio has 20 years of broad financial and operations experience in the water utility and energy sectors. Prior to leading New Jersey American Water and the company’s Eastern Division, she served as president of American Water Enterprises, the market-based products and services division of American Water, where she oversaw American Water’s three market-based business units. Prior to that, she was vice president and treasurer for American Water, where she led the company’s long-term and short-term financing activities, corporate planning and investment analysis. She also served in finance functions in two different American Water state subsidiaries, as well as in corporate finance planning and analysis.

Degillio has a Master of Business Administration degree from the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and an undergraduate degree in math/statistics and finance from the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse.

Kirwan has held a number of key operational positions ranging from water production superintendent, regional operations manager, director of maintenance services and senior director of Operations for coastal New Jersey, to vice president of Operations for New Jersey American Water. Most recently, he held the role of vice president of Operational Excellence for American Water.

In his 34 years with the company, Kirwan has served as a leader and member for many teams and projects, including leading the Hurricane Sandy Barrier Island Restoration project, several technology initiatives and Business Development teams.

Kirwan holds a bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York and multiple environmental licenses in water treatment, water distribution and industrial water treatment.

“We are excited to have Cheryl lead New Jersey and the Eastern Division,” said American Water’s chief operating officer, Walter Lynch. “With more than 30 years of experience in the water business, Cheryl is deeply committed to our customers, employees and the communities we are privileged to serve. We are also pleased to have Deb take on this role at American Water as it is key in our commitment to put our customers at the center of everything we plan and do.

“And Kevin will further enhance our environmental leadership role in not only compliance and operations, but also in our environmental and water quality research, development and deployment efforts,” added Lynch.

New Jersey American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to approximately 2.7 million people.

With a history dating back to 1886, American Water is the largest and most geographically diverse U.S. publicly traded water and wastewater utility company. The company employs more than 7,100 dedicated professionals who provide regulated and market-based drinking water, wastewater and other related services to an more than 14 million people in 46 states and Ontario, Canada. American Water provides safe, clean, affordable and reliable water services to our customers to make sure we keep their lives flowing. For more information, visit amwater.com and follow American Water on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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