John Kirner to lead Tacoma Water

The Tacoma Public Utility Board has confirmed John Kirner at Tacoma Water superintendent, effective April 1, to succeed Ken Merry, who retires March 31.

The superintendent is the chief operating officer for the municipally owned utility that provides water service to some 90,000 customers in Tacoma and Pierce and South King counties.

Kirner joined Tacoma Water in 1983 as resource development coordinator, and was promoted to deputy superintendent in 1986. He was provided leadership for Tacoma Water’s business plan, the Howard Hanson Dam Additional Storage Project, the Habitat Conservation Plan, regional water resource planning, legislative relations, labor relations, budget, rates and staffing needs.

“John has both breadth and depth of experience in nearly every aspect of Tacoma Water activities,” said Mark Crisson, Tacoma Public Utilities director who made the appointment. “He is ably qualified to provide leadership that Tacoma Water will need in the next several years.”

He has served on several management committees for the national American Water Works Association and for the Pacific Northwest Section of the organization. He holds a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering from Tufts University, a master of science degree in engineering from the University of Michigan and a master of business administration degree from the University of Puget Sound. He is a member of the national ski patrol system and director of the Crystal Mountain volunteer ski patrol.