Martin L. Adams Named as LADWP General Manager and Chief Engineer by LA City Council

After several months of controversy, including an FBI raid and the termination of the agency’s general manager, the Los Angeles (LA) City Council on Friday, Sept. 13 unanimously confirmed Martin L. Adams as the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s (LADWP) new general manager and chief engineer. Adams has served in as interim general manager by appointment of the LADWP Commissioners after his predecessor, David Wright, was ousted from the office by LA Mayor Eric Garcetti.

“My career at LADWP has lasted about a third of the department’s existence. To me it’s a wonderful opportunity and a challenge to be able to lead what is a fantastic organization of over 10,000 employees who have helped the city become what it is today,” said Adams.

Adams is a veteran of LADWP having worked for the organization for 35 years. He most recently served as Chief Operating Officer (COO), where he oversaw LADWP’s extensive water and power operations. Prior to becoming COO, he led the LADWP Water System as senior assistant general manager where he oversaw water infrastructure, water resources and water quality. In this position he helped reduce Los Angeles’ water use by nearly 20 percent through implementation of LA’s industry-leading water conservation ordinance. Additionally, he oversaw the creation of numerous customer rebates and programs for customers, while also accelerating LADWP’s replacement of aging infrastructure.

Moving forward Adams has been charged with filling the new LADWP position of inspector general. Mayor Garcetti announced this new position – also on Friday – to help the utility “uphold the highest standards of integrity and improve customer confidence,” per a statement Garcetti released. According to the LA Times, the inspector general’s office will, “oversee the DWP’s internal audit and special investigations divisions, as well as initiate investigations, the mayor’s office said. The office also will provide oversight of contracting matters, whistleblower complaints, ethics and other internal policies.”

“Today’s unanimous City Council vote to confirm Marty Adams affirms my strong belief that he is the right leader at the right time to guide my DWP reform agenda of fiscal responsibility and low rates, reliability, sustainability and improved customer service,” said LA May Garcetti. “He has played a critical role in helping the department become the most sustainable public utility in America, has the experience and expertise to navigate the toughest challenges, and is skilled at bringing people together to solve problems. I am confident that his work — and leadership in integrating an Inspector General into the organization — will help us make certain that the DWP upholds the highest standards of integrity.”

Adams was nominated to the post by Mayor Eric Garcetti in June and is the first to hold the title of “Chief Engineer” in over a generation. During Adam’s nearly two months’ time at the helm of LADWP, the department saw the Board approve the Eland solar and battery storage project, the largest in the U.S., helping to bolster LA’s renewable energy portfolio.

“We know where the future is leading us. We know we have to get to where we have no fossil fuels in our system and focus on our local water supply. We are working on those plans and making sure we are fully aligned in our Department, all pulling in the same direction,” said Adams “We’re going to get where we need to be and to do so in a very responsible way, with sensitivity to our customers who foot the bill. I know we have a lot of challenges ahead. We have a lot of things we do right at the Department and some things we have to correct. We have a great workforce and great capabilities. In the years ahead, I want to further hone that workforce and keep pointing us in the direction that the city needs to go.”

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One comment

  1. I am 94, my wife, 92. We’re acutely aware of water usage so that every night when I make a salad, I wash everything into a bucket and then use that water for my potted plants. We seldom have guests but several weeks ago, someone visited, and when using our spare bathroom, heard noise emanating from the toilet. We investigated and saw that there was a substantial leak in the reservoir. We immediately had it repaired and then received a WHOPPING BILL from the DWP for $769.84!
    I called the DWP and they said that they only have mitigation if there were an underground leak and referred me to your service helping people on a continuing basis.
    I’m not asking for that, but what I’m asking for is to please reconsider your policy because of this unusual circumstance and give us some substantial relief from such a high bill––as though there were an underground leak––after all, a bathroom seldom used is comparable to having something underground because it’s undetected!
    Please, sir, I urge you to make some allowance for two nonagenarians. Our account: #950 715 1000
    Thank you,
    Jack and Donna Salem

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