For Immediate Release
Contact: Diana Giraldo
Westlands Water District Special Projects Manager announces retirement
Fresno, CA – Dan Pope, the Special Projects Manager for Westlands Water District, announced today that he is retiring from the District on September 6, 2019. Mr. Pope will begin an extended medical leave in mid-May, and the recovery period is expected to be approximately six weeks.
Mr. Pope became an employee of the District in March 2014, as its Chief Operating Officer. Prior to his work at Westlands, Mr. Pope served as the general manager of the Tri-Dam Project and Tri-Dam Power Authority, general manager of Merced Irrigation District, and worked for 26 years in various positions at Pacific Gas & Electric, beginning as a field engineer at the Helms Pumped Storage Project.
Upon his announcement Mr. Pope stated: “Working at Westlands has been a genuine privilege and very rewarding experience on my career path. I am grateful for the wonderful opportunities to contribute to District’s continued success given to me by Tom Birmingham and the support extended to me from the Board. There were numerous challenges, particularly in years when the District received zero or near-zero percent water allocations. But I had the privilege to supervise staff that are talented, innovative, and dedicated. They will continue to serve well farmers in Westlands. I am proud to have worked with them.”
Tom Birmingham, the Westlands’ General Manager, stated: “Dan has been an incredibly loyal employee, who was committed to farmers served by the District. Every action he took was taken with their best interests in mind. On a personal level, Dan has been a friend for more than 40 years, and I will miss his advice and support. I wish the very best for Dan, his wife Cathy, and their family.”
Westlands Water District is the largest agricultural water district in the United States, made up of more than 1,000 square miles of prime farmland in western Fresno and Kings Counties. Westlands provides water to 700 family-owned farms that average 653 acres in size.