As the leader of an organization with more than 400 employees, I cannot show any favoritism among my staff members. But that rule only applies to the humans.
I do have a favorite fish, Frankie the Fish. He became ALCOSAN’s mascot in 1995, three years before I became executive director. Like all of my other coworkers, Frankie had a very busy 2017.
During the year, he participated in 17 different parades, mascot events, celebrations and festivals. He donned ice skates and joined some of his oversized friends to spin around the PPG Place Ice Rink during Mass Mutual’s annual mascot skate. He raced against his stuffed peers in the Boyce Park mascot race. He participated twice with a group of energetic young people in Girls on the Run events. And he marched in parades in Bellevue, Brighton Heights, Crafton, Homestead and Pittsburgh’s Hill District and Downtown.
Frankie is just one part of ALCOSAN’s vibrant community outreach programming. Members of the Communications Division hand out literature and meet with the public at dozens of community events without Frankie’s help. For one thing, it’s just too hot for him to attend many summertime events, such as Pittsburgh’s annual Fourth of July celebration. At other times, the presence of a large fish can be a distraction when individuals or organizations want to question ALCOSAN officials about our work to create clean water and improve the condition of the region’s rivers and streams.
A calendar of events is posted on this site, and activity typically builds as winter recedes. Keep an eye on the schedule, because we’d love to see as many of the people we serve as possible throughout 2018.
One of the most popular community programs is Pups for Clean Water, which encourages owners to clean up after their pets and keep waste out of storm drains and the sewer system. This year, ALCOSAN added another component to that program by offering dog waste stations for use in parks located in any of the 83 municipalities served by ALCOSAN. We provide the stations and a supply of 200 “poop” bags, and the municipalities agree to service the stations and resupply the bags as needed. So far, the dispensers are in place in 11 communities, and more are on the way.
I am so grateful to pet owners who do the right thing and help ALCOSAN with its clean water mission.
As 2017 draws to a close, I’m pleased to wish you all a joyous holiday season and a very happy 2018.