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Leadership Montgomery County Class of 2014 receives TWDB-s Texas Rain Catcher Award

For immediate release. Contact: Media Relations at 512-463-5129

AUSTIN – (May 6, 2015) – The Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) announced today the recipients of its annual Texas Rain Catcher Award, a rainwater harvesting competition and recognition program. The Leadership Montgomery County Class of 2014 was recognized in the Nonprofit category for its ongoing efforts to improve the community through a rainwater harvesting project.

The TWDB's Texas Rain Catcher Award recognizes excellence in the application of rainwater harvesting systems in Texas, promotes rainwater harvesting technology, and educates the public on this important water-saving practice.

Each class of Leadership Montgomery County chooses a project that addresses a community need. The Class of 2014 decided to promote water conservation through a project whose goals included teaching class members how to install a rainwater collection system, educating the public, and encouraging businesses and community leaders to follow the Class of 2014's example. To achieve their goals, the class used direct and in-kind donations to install rainwater harvesting systems and educational signage at three locations around the county.

The class installed a 500-gallon collection tank at Oak Ridge Elementary School, a 1,000-gallon poly-mart collection tank at the Bear Branch Sports Field, and a 1,000-gallon steel collection tank at the North Montgomery County Community Center. All three sites included educational signs describing the project and encouraging wise water use and water conservation practices. Community engagement and outreach was a priority for the class. They built a rainwater harvesting model, which was then donated for use in educational presentations. The class also created a public-private partnership with the Lone Star Groundwater Conservation District, which hosts the online portion of "Harvesting the Rain".

The Texas Rain Catcher Award competition began in 2007 and is open to all individuals, companies, organizations, municipalities, and other local and state governmental entities in Texas. It recognizes entities and individuals in the rainwater harvesting community and beyond and establishes award recipients as dedicated water conservation leaders in Texas. The Leadership Montgomery Class of 2014 is one of five awardees being recognized statewide this year.

The TWDB is the state agency charged with collecting and disseminating water-related data, assisting with regional planning, and preparing the state water plan for the development of the state's water resources. The TWDB administers cost-effective financial assistance programs for the construction of water supply, wastewater treatment, flood control, and agricultural water conservation projects.