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Update: California Water Environmental Agency presented Ironhouse Sanitary District’s John Abdilla with the agency's prestigious State award for "Mechanical Technician Person of the Year" at the District's Board meeting on Tuesday, April 20. Earlier this year, John was awarded the same award by the California Water Environmental Agency- San Francisco Bay Section (CWEA-SFBS). The Mechanical Technician Person of the Year Award recognizes outstanding performance, dedication to the job, and for sharing knowledge of maintenance procedures.
John has more than 20 years of experience working in the mechanical and machinist industry. He began his career in 1998 working on 18-Wheelers before moving on to be a machinist for the City of San Francisco’s Muni system in 2005. In 2010, Abdilla moved on to begin a hotrod fabrication shop. It wasn’t until 2014 that he started working on his OIT and pursuing his wastewater certification.
After receiving his wastewater certification in 2015, Abdilla was hired by Ironhouse Sanitary District as the plant’s sole maintenance staff member. Since starting at the District, Abdilla has managed multiple maintenances and parts contracts and managed and completed numerous plant maintenance upgrades with contractors. In 2019 the District’s Water Recycling Facility began working on a Capital Campaign project that included several upgrades throughout the plant. Abdilla has been working closely with contractors on several concurrent projects, including a drum screen rebuild, mechanical screen rebuild, adding hot water heater and plumbing systems into the existing mechanical and drum screen spray systems, as well as adding two compactors to the helix area.
As a certified wastewater professional, Abdilla has the ability to run facility operations and test equipment without taking the time of one of the facility operators at the plant. This has been especially helpful during the COVID-19 crisis when the District is having to deal with running smaller crews.