IJC launches new Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement Boards


The International Joint Commission (IJC) is pleased to announce the appointment of members to its newly reconstituted Great Lakes Water Quality and Science Advisory boards.

The boards were established to assist the IJC in fulfilling its obligations under the renewed 2012 U.S- Canada Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement. The IJC held an open nomination process, in the fall of 2013, for positions on the Water Quality Board and the Science Advisory Board. Members of both boards include an equal number of Canadians and Americans.

"The IJC was pleased to receive the nominations of many worthy candidates from across the geographical breadth of the Great Lakes - St. Lawrence System," said Commissioner Benoit Bouchard, Canadian Commissioner.

"The members selected bring with them valuable knowledge and experiences that will contribute to the success of the boards," said Lana Pollack, chair of the IJC’s U.S Section.

For the Great Lakes Water Quality Board, the IJC appointed Rob de Loë to serve as the Canadian Chair and David Ullrich to serve as the American Chair. Dr. de Loë is one of Canada’s leading academics in water policy. He currently holds the University Research chair in Water Policy and Governance at Waterloo where he is a professor. His research program focuses on governance for water allocation, source water protection, climate change adaptation and transboundary water governance. Mr. Ullrich is the Executive Director of the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative. He is a recognized leader in the field with over forty years of experience related to the Great Lakes at the Initiative, U.S. EPA and the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, as well as service on the past Water Quality Board.

The Water Quality Board is the principal advisor to the IJC in reviewing and assessing progress in implementation of the Agreement. It identifies emerging issues and recommending strategies and approaches for preventing and resolving the complex challenges facing the Great Lakes.  It is further charged with providing advice on the role of relevant jurisdictions to implement these strategies and approaches.

With respect to the Science Advisory Board, the Commission has appointed Carol Miller to serve as the American Chair and John Lawrence to serve as the Canadian Chair.  Dr. Miller is a professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Wayne State University, as well as the Chair of Wayne State University's Committee on Environmental Initiatives and Co-Director of the University’s Urban Watershed Environmental Research Group.  She is a leader in her field and has been a member of the Science Advisory Board since December 2010. Dr. John Lawrence is the Senior Science Adviser to Ontario’s Regional Director General at Environment Canada.  Dr. Lawrence has over 35 years of experience working on the Great Lakes has been the Canadian Co-Chair of the IJC’s Council of Great Lakes Research Managers since 2007.

Dr. Miller is also the American co-chair of Science Advisory Board’s Science Priority Committee along with Dr. Jeffrey Ridal of the St. Lawrence River Institute of Environmental Sciences. Dr. Lawrence is also the Canadian co-chair of the Science Advisory Board’s Research Coordination Committee with Norman Grannemann of the United States Geological Survey.

The Science Advisory Board provides advice to the IJC and to the Water Quality Board on research and scientific matters including the IJC’s triennial Assessment of Progress Reports, the science priorities of the IJC and the federal governments, and the identification, evaluation and resolution of water quality issues in the ecosystem of the Great Lakes basin.

More information about board membership and each board’s operational procedures are available at the websites of the Water Quality Board and the Science Advisory Board