Southern Nevada. Educating the businesses,
which then help educate their employees, is
huge. They were early adapters. They got it
quickly. When business leads, what government
is doing gains credibility.
Source: Southern Nevada Water Authority
is known as a progressive agency. What does
“progressive” mean to you?
Mulroy: Being open, not being defensive.
Being objective about what may sound like
a crazy suggestion, and not just rejecting it
out of hand. A healthy portion of humility.
Understanding the politics of your community.
And empowering your workforce. You’d
be amazed at how many unbelievably brilliant
ideas are in the workforce somewhere
and are not coming out because people are
afraid. I meet every six months with every
single employee in the organization. It
takes a week of large group meetings, but
they are very open dialogues. I share with
them. They can ask anything they want. It’s
a trust issue. It’s that simple.
Source: Water has effectively been your life’s
work. What do you consider your most significant
Mulroy: The creation of the water authority
for openers. That was a huge accomplishment,
then our conservation efforts. The
agreements on the Colorado River that we
were an integral part of. We take great satisfaction
out of all of these. And I’m delighted
that there is a solid working relationship
between the urban areas on the Colorado
River, Denver, MET, CAP, ourselves—and
that the states are functioning in a healthy
way with one another and not a dysfunctional
group of demigods. Watching this
community respond and take conservation
seriously and really retool itself has been
Source: How much longer will you stay at it?
Mulroy: I’ve always been a public policy
junkie. One of our foundational societal
issues is how we manage our water
resources. Water is our economic enabler. It
has a huge connection to our social interactions
and our social policies. It’s the reason
we exist. Many people think water is going
to be the next arena for armed conflict,
but I believe it’s an opportunity to show
that armed conflict isn’t necessary and we
can have successful collaborations. And
that’s what keeps me going—the interstate
dynamics, the challenges that keep coming
at us. It’s hard to know where life will take
you, but I don’t see losing my love of this
issue. And my fascination. We’ll see. S