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May 9, 2022

After longtime president's retirement, Maine Water turns to deputy

Courtesy / Maine Water Co. Richard Knowlton, left, will be retiring as Maine Water Co. president next month. He will be succeeded by Mark Vannoy, right.

Maine Water Co. said its president Richard Knowlton, who has been with the company 29 years, will retire next month and be succeeded by vice president Mark Vannoy.

Knowlton, who will retire June 17, joined what is now Maine Water as vice president of operations in 1993 and became president in 2017.
Maine Water is wholly owned by SJW Group’s (NYSE: SJW) subsidiary, Connecticut Water Service Inc. Maine Water and its predecessor companies have been serving customers in the state of Maine since 1880. It provides water service to a population of more than 80,000 in 21 communities across Maine.
Knowlton played a critical role in the design and construction of the $7.2 million Mirror Lake Drinking Water Treatment Plant, which was completed in 2010 and serves customers in the Camden-Rockland area. More recently, he was involved in the $60 million Saco River Drinking Water Resource Center, which is under construction and will replace the 1884 water treatment plant currently serving customers in the Saco-Biddeford area. 

“The customers and communities of Maine Water will continue to benefit for years to come from Rick’s commitment to providing high-quality water service and his leadership of the Maine Water team in that mission,” said Maureen Westbrook, president of Connecticut Water Service.

Maine Water's next president 

With Knowlton’s retirement, Vannoy, will become president. Prior to joining Maine Water in 2019, Vannoy served on the Maine Public Utility Commission and was chair for four years beginning in 2014.
“We are fortunate to have a leader of Mark’s caliber become president,” said Westbrook. “Mark has been assuming increased responsibilities for day-to-day operations while Rick focused on completion of the new Saco River Drinking Water Resource Center. Mark’s commitment to a culture of service, technical expertise and respect for the environment will serve employees, customers and communities well.”
“Maine Water will be in good and capable hands,” Knowlton said. “Mark and I have worked closely together over the past three years, and he is a natural and accomplished leader committed to serving our Maine employees and communities. We will use the next six weeks to meet with employees and local and state leaders to complete a smooth transition.”
Vannoy is a retired U.S. Navy officer and a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy. He holds a master’s degree in civil and environmental engineering from Cornell University. He lives in Waldoboro with his family.
Parent company, SJW Group, is among the largest investor-owned pure play water and wastewater utilities in the U.S., providing water service to nearly 1.5 million people. 

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