Toni Ruggle Retiring as District Manager After 37 Years of Service
OROVILLE, Calif. — California Water Service (Cal Water) announced today that George Barber has been selected to lead the utility's Oroville District, effective April 24, 2017. He succeeds longtime manager and Oroville native Toni Ruggle, who will retire at the end of April.
Barber joins Cal Water after spending more than 12 years as the general manager of Paradise Irrigation District (PID). At PID, he was responsible for administration, planning, and project and personnel management. During this time, he oversaw the development of the Magalia Bypass Pipeline Project – protecting PID's source of supply and simultaneously saving energy, and continues to manage the development of its Process Water Recycle Project at the utility's water treatment plant. Barber holds his Professional Engineer license, Water Treatment Operator Grade 4 certification, and Water Distribution Operator Grade 3 certification from the state of California.
"I joined PID because I wanted to make a positive impact in my hometown, and I think we achieved a lot during my tenure. I simply couldn't pass up the opportunity to join Cal Water, a top-notch, regulated water utility that I have long admired," Barber said.
Ruggle, who has been with Cal Water for 37 years, has served as Oroville District Manager since 2007. Under Ruggle's leadership, Cal Water's Oroville District met all water quality standards, replaced 14,000 feet of water main, oversaw significant treatment plant upgrades, and met rigorous, state-mandated water use reduction requirements during this recent, historic drought. Ruggle has been an active member of the Oroville Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, the Rotary Club Board of Directors, and the Fishin' Mission Foundation.
"Protecting our customers' health and safety and providing them with quality, service, and value were my highest priorities as district manager, and I have considered it a privilege to serve our customers here in Oroville," Ruggle said. "I know George is a dedicated, experienced water system manager whose industry expertise and leadership skills will ensure our Oroville customers have a reliable, high-quality water supply every time they turn on the tap."
Cal Water serves about 10,400 people through 3,600 service connections in Oroville and about 2 million people through 480,300 service connections in California. The company, which has provided water service in the area since 1927, was ranked "Highest in Customer Satisfaction among Water Utilities in the West" in 2016 by J.D. Power in its inaugural Water Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction Study. Additional information may be obtained online at www.calwater.com.