Heather Himmelberger, P.E.
Heather Himmelberger is a registered professional engineer with 28+ years of experience working with water and wastewater utilities and in the environmental arena. She has a BS in Environmental Engineering from Penn State University and an MS in Environmental Engineering from Johns Hopkins University. She is currently working on a PhD in Civil Engineering at the University of New Mexico. She served as the Director of the NM Environmental Finance Center from 1996 to 2012 and became Director of the Southwest Environmental Finance Center in 2013. As Director, she has assisted state, local and tribal governments with the broad financial implications of providing environmental services, such as water and wastewater, and complying with state and federal regulations. Heather has served as an expert witness to EPA’s Environmental Financial Advisory Board (EFAB) and was appointed an official board member to EFAB in spring 2014. She is on two subcommittees, one related to small systems and compliance and the other related to affordability of wastewater. She has been a presenter at numerous national, international, regional, and local conferences, workshops, and meetings. Heather has been project lead on the Small Systems Managerial and Financial Capacity Assistance project funded by EPA in 2012 for the Environmental Finance Center Network, a project we call, “Smart Management for Small Water Systems” and is currently the co-PI of the seventh round of funding for the Smart Management for Small Systems project. In this capacity, she has provided trainings in all states and territories and has provided assistance to small communities in areas such as asset management, water loss, multiple funding, regionalization, and energy efficiency. She has also conducted 10 webinars for the first phase of the project. Heather has been providing training and implementation assistance in Asset Management since 2005. She coordinated and facilitated the first Asset Management users group in New Mexico in October of 2010 and completed an interactive Asset Management Training Manual that includes over 200 video clips and combines Asset Management with Energy Efficiency. She directed a project team that worked with 10 different groups of water systems to encourage collaborative efforts between the systems. She was a member of the Dona Ana County Water and Wastewater Alliance back in the late 1990s, which was one of the first collaborative efforts in the State of New Mexico. She helped these systems understand the benefits of mutual cooperation, and led this group to the formation of a regional water entity. She facilitated the meetings in Texas that lead to the formation of the Texas Water Infrastructure Coordinating Committee (TWICC). The TWICC includes all water and wastewater infrastructure funding groups as well as the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. This group now meets quarterly to coordinate funding in Texas. Heather participated in New Mexico One Stop Shops, which were the mechanism of unified funding before New Mexico embarked on a unified funding application process. She has been involved in the workgroups that were developing unified approaches for Preliminary Engineering Reports and Environmental Documents so that communities could use one process that would satisfy all agencies. Heather has conducted numerous studies related to water loss which investigated water loss technologies and their applicability. In addition, she has worked on a Water Research Foundation project that is developing water loss training for small systems.