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Montgomery County Resident Honored with EPA Employee Award

Release Date: 06/20/2008
Contact Information: Donna Heron 215-814-5113 /

PHILADELPHIA (June 20, 2008) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s mid-Atlantic region presented its Customer Service Award to Joseph McDowell, of Flourtown, Pa., at its annual Employee Recognition Ceremony on May 13.

This award is given to an employee who exemplifies excellence in customer service.

McDowell, a project manager with EPA’s hazardous site cleanup division, was honored for his continued responsiveness to community concerns at the Crater Resources Superfund site in Upper Merion Township.

“This 50-acre parcel of land has been a toxic waste site since 1919 when the Alan Wood Steel Company disposed of waste generated by its coking facility into three of the quarries,” said Brian Rehn, last year's winner. “What distinguishes this from other Superfund sites is the pressure to develop the property because it is literally located in the middle of a commercial office complex.

"Joe has done a superb job of communicating, and routinely interacts with key customers, providing them with prompt and helpful information to better explain the cleanup process,” Rehn said. “Joe’s willingness to meet one-on-one, with area residents, township officials, and local developers has created a real sense of trust. The township has repeatedly expressed their appreciation for his participation in various events, and he has come to be known by area residents -- and even the responsible party -- as a straight shooter whose word can be trusted.”

McDowell, who has been with the U.S. EPA since 1992, graduated from Bishop McDevitt High School in 1974 and received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Drexel University in 1980. Prior to joining EPA, McDowell worked at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard where he was responsible for a number of environmental programs.

EPA’s mid-Atlantic region covers Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia.