News Releases

Public Service Board Welcomes Newest Member

News Release
Contact: Christina Montoya
915-594-5596 (office), e-mail:

Date: January 13, 2016

EL PASO, Texas Dr. Kristina Mena was sworn in today as the newest member of the seven-person Public Service Board (PSB) that manages El Paso Water Utilities (EPWU). The El Paso City Council unanimously voted to appoint Dr. Kristina Mena to the PSB on December 8, 2015 as the Communications, Public Administration and Education Committee representative. Dr. Mena succeeds Ruth Katherine Brennand, who served two-full terms and was Vice-Chair of the PSB.

"I am extremely honored to be afforded this opportunity," said Dr. Mena. "I look forward to serving the PSB and the El Paso community."

Dr. Mena joins the PSB with 25 years of knowledge and expertise in water quality and environmental science. In addition to recently serving as Acting Dean at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston School of Public Health El Paso Regional Campus, Dr. Mena heads the Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences program throughout the School's six-campus structure.

Dr. Mena earned her PhD in environmental microbiology and epidemiology at The University of Arizona, a MSPH at the University of South Florida, and a BA in Biology from Franklin College.

Dr. Mena is also among a small group of researchers with an expertise in microbial and chemical risk assessment, which evaluates both acute and chronic health outcomes associated with exposure to contaminated water. Her research will be brought to the field as she works toward ensuring safe water quality at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Six PSB members are appointed by El Paso City Council based on their expertise in the following areas: financial management, general business management, engineering, environmental or health, consumer or citizen advocacy, communications, public administration, or education. The seventh member is the mayor who represents municipal government. Members serve no more than two consecutive four-year terms.

El Paso Water Utilities operates and maintains four utilities - water, wastewater, reclaimed water and stormwater - for the El Paso region. The Public Service Board (PSB), created in 1952 by City Ordinance, oversees the administrative decisions and actions by EPWU. With an innovative and diverse water portfolio and the world's largest inland desalination plant, EPWU implements the latest technology to provide 97 percent of El Paso County with high-quality, sustainable water supplies at a reasonable cost.