Board of Directors and management team
Board of Directors
Marilyn Kirkpatrick, Chair, Las Vegas Valley Water District
Marilyn Kirkpatrick joined the Clark County Commission in August 2015 when she was appointed by Gov. Brian Sandoval to fill a vacancy. At the time, Kirkpatrick was serving in the capacity of assemblywoman for Nevada's Legislative District 1.
Kirkpatrick was first elected to the Nevada legislature in 2004 and served five regular and seven special sessions in Carson City before the appointment. In 2013, she was elected speaker of the assembly and prior in 2011, she was the only member of the assembly to chair two committees: government affairs and taxation.
She is now serving a four-year term on the commission after being elected as commissioner of District B in 2016.
A native Nevadan, Kirkpatrick grew up in Clark County. She graduated from Western High School and attended Krolack Business School and the Community College of Southern Nevada.
Commissioner Kirkpatrick and her husband have six children, six grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.
For more information about Commissioner Kirkpatrick, visit the Clark County website.
Dan Stewart, Vice Chair, City of Henderson
Dan Stewart has served as a member of the Henderson City Council representing Ward IV since 2017.
In addition to the Southern Nevada Water Authority Board of Directors, Stewart also serves on the Colorado River Commission of Nevada and as chair of the Nevada State College Foundation.
Councilman Stewart is president of Valley Construction Company, a general engineering and building contractor, and vice president of development for Gardner Company, the master developer for the Harry Reid Research and Technology Park in partnership with the UNLV Research Foundation.
Stewart is a graduate of Brigham Young University, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering. He also received his master’s degree in Construction Engineering and Management from Stanford University and completed the Harvard University Advanced Management Development Program.
For more information about Councilman Stewart, visit the City of Henderson website.
James Adams, City of Boulder City
James Howard Adams has served on the Boulder City Council since 2019.
In addition to the Southern Nevada Water Authority Board of Directors, he also serves on the Board of Health for the Southern Nevada Health District.
A professional musician, Adams earned a degree in Deaf Studies from the College of Southern Nevada.
For more information about Councilman Adams, visit the Boulder City website.
Cedric Crear, City of Las Vegas
Currently representing Ward 5, Cedric Crear was elected to the Las Vegas City Council in 2018.
In addition to serving on the Southern Nevada Water Authority Board of Directors, he also serves on the Metropolitan Police Department - Fiscal Affairs Committee, Southern Nevada Regional Planning Coalition, Economic Opportunity Board, Centennial Commission, Local Law Enforcement Advisory Committee, and Southern Nevada Enterprise Community Board.
Prior to his service on the Las Vegas City Council, Crear worked for Station Casinos as a marketing director and founded Crear Creative Group. He currently serves as president of Crear Outdoor Advertising.
Crear earned a bachelor's degree from Howard University.
He and his wife have been married for more than 20 years and have two children.
For more information about Councilman Crear, visit the City of Las Vegas website.
James Gibson, Big Bend Water District
A former three-term Mayor of Henderson and a practicing attorney in business and commercial law for more than 35 years, James Gibson was appointed to the Clark County Commission in July 2017.
While mayor of Henderson, Gibson guided the city through a period of unprecedented growth as it became the second-largest city in Nevada.
A native Nevadan, born in Las Vegas and a near lifetime resident of Henderson, Gibson has served on numerous boards and commissions, including the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority Board of Directors, the Nevada Development Authority Board of Directors, the Las Vegas Events Board of Directors, the Regional Transportation Commission and as Co-Chair of the Civilian Military Council for Nellis Air Force Base. In the private sector, Gibson served on the St. Rose Dominican Hospital Board of Directors.
Gibson is president of Western Elite, a full-service waste services provider in Clark County. He previously served as General Counsel of American Pacific Corporation operating subsidiaries, president of the Las Vegas Monorail Company, and president and chief executive officer of Vegas.com.
Gibson has been recognized for his contributions by local, state and national organizations. Among the many awards he has received are the Lili Claire Foundation’s Spirit of Leadership Award and the Humanitarian Award from the National Jewish Medical and Research Center.
For more information about Commissioner Gibson, visit the Clark County website.
Justin Jones, Clark County Water Reclamation District
Clark County Commissioner Justin Jones was elected to the Clark County Commission in January 2019.
Jones served in the Nevada State Senate as an assistant majority whip from 2012 to 2014.
He has provided pro bono representation to child victims of domestic abuse and neglect through the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada's Children's Attorney Project. He also has served as chair on the Volunteer Center of Southern Nevada and Battle Born Progress, as a board member for United Way of Southern Nevada and Emerge Nevada, and as a founding board member of Nevadans for Background Checks.
Jones has been a practicing attorney in Nevada since graduating from George Washington University Law School in 2001. Before entering private practice, Commissioner Jones served as a law clerk to the Honorable Roger L. Hunt of the United States District Court, District of Nevada.
He and his wife have two children.
For more information about Commissioner Jones, visit the Clark County website.
John Lee, City of North Las Vegas
Mayor John Lee was elected in April 2013 and also has served on various commissions and boards through elected office as a Nevada State Assemblyman and Nevada State Senator.
Lee's first job was with the Culinary Union as a dishwasher at the Silver Nugget on Las Vegas Boulevard. In 1975, he began working in the plumbing trade and continued working the tradecraft at various construction projects throughout the Las Vegas Valley. He eventually turned his craft into a successful plumbing company.
Mayor Lee is an avid outdoorsman and experienced mountain biker. To signal the end to his fight with stage IV cancer, he completed a 10-day trek of the Tahoe Rim and returned to Carson City to continue fighting for Nevadans.
He and his wife have seven children and 18 grandchildren. They reside in North Las Vegas.
For more information about Mayor Lee, visit the City of North Las Vegas website.
The Water Authority Board of Directors meets the third Thursday of odd-numbered months at 9 a.m. (except special meetings) in the board chambers in suite 700 (7th floor) of the Molasky Corporate Center, 100 City Parkway, Las Vegas. The meetings also are broadcast live on this website's home page.
Agendas are posted three business days prior to each board meeting.
If you would like to speak on matters under the jurisdiction of the Water Authority that are not listed on the agenda, you may do so after all matters listed on the posted agenda have been considered. Please limit your comments to three minutes or less. No action can be taken on matters that are not listed on the posted agenda.
Daily operations of the Water Authority are overseen by the SNWA's Executive Team:
John J. Entsminger, General Manager
John J. Entsminger oversees the operations of the Southern Nevada Water Authority, which is responsible for acquiring, treating and delivering water to local agencies that collectively serve 2 million residents and more than 40 million annual visitors, and the Las Vegas Valley Water District, which serves more than 375,000 customer accounts. He was appointed general manager by both agencies' Boards of Directors in early 2014, having previously served as director of environmental and water resource law and senior deputy general manager. Entsminger joined the organization in 1999 as an attorney.
Entsminger has spent his career addressing the unique water challenges facing Southern Nevada. He has been instrumental in developing inter basin and international agreements protecting Lake Mead water elevations, including the 2007 Colorado River Interim Guidelines and Minutes 319 and 323 to the 1944 U.S. - Mexico Water Treaty. In April 2014, he was appointed by Governor Sandoval to serve as Nevada's lead negotiator on Colorado River matters.
On the national front, Entsminger serves on the Boards of Directors of the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies and the Water Research Foundation, and the Desert Research Institute Foundation Board of Trustees.
Committed to public involvement, Entsminger works closely with a committee of community stakeholders tasked with making recommendations on issues related to funding, planning and facilities construction and maintenance. These recommendations will guide future organizational initiatives, including a renewed commitment to maintaining its vast water systems.
Entsminger is a graduate of the University of Northern Colorado and of the University of Colorado School of Law, where he was awarded the Charles N. Woodruff Natural Resources Law Fellowship. He and his family have been in Las Vegas for nearly 20 years.
David L. Johnson, Deputy General Manager, Operations
David L. Johnson is the Deputy General Manager of Operations for the Southern Nevada Water Authority and the Las Vegas Valley Water District.
Johnson has been with the agency since 2004, previously holding the position as director of the Water Quality & Treatment Department for the Southern Nevada Water Authority. He has more than 20 years of experience in chemical manufacturing management, water treatment and water quality management. Before arriving in Nevada, he worked in New York state and has held the positions of technical engineer, production manager, treatment manager and director.
He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Purdue University and maintains Level 4 Water Treatment and Level 4 Distribution certifications from the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection.
Johnson is a member of the American Water Works Association, the International Ozone Association and the Nevada Water & Wastewater Operator's Forum.
He and his wife, Lisa, have lived in Southern Nevada since 1998 and have four children.
Colby Pellegrino, Deputy General Manager, Resources
Colby Pellegrino is the Deputy General Manager of Resources for the Southern Nevada Water Authority and the Las Vegas Valley Water District.
After joining the agency in 2003, Pellegrino served as an instrumental part of the Water Resources division, supporting Colorado River modeling efforts to anticipate changes caused by climate change, reduced flows, and other inputs.
In her current capacity, she is responsible for the management of the Water Authority’s water resource portfolio, which includes protecting Nevada’s interests and rights to Colorado River water through interstate negotiations, developing regional water conservation programs, managing groundwater resources, and water resource planning.
Pellegrino also serves on the Board of Alliance for Water Efficiency, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the efficient and sustainable use of water and water conservation advocacy throughout North America.
A native of Las Vegas, she earned her Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and her Master of Business Administration from Mississippi State University.
Pellegrino is an avid cook, hiker, and outdoors enthusiast. She and her husband, Mark, have two children.
Doa Ross, Deputy General Manager, Engineering
Doa Ross is the Deputy General Manager of Engineering for the Southern Nevada Water Authority and the Las Vegas Valley Water District.
Ross has been with the agency for 19 years and worked in the utility industry for more than 21 years.
A licensed professional engineer, she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and serves on the Howard R. Hughes College of Engineering Advisory Board.
Ross has lived in Southern Nevada since 1991, is married to husband, Corey, and has two children.
E. Kevin Bethel, Chief Financial Officer
E. Kevin Bethel is the Chief Financial Officer for the Southern Nevada Water Authority and the Las Vegas Valley Water District.
As the chief financial officer, Bethel is responsible for all financial functions, including debt management, capital planning, financial reporting, budgeting as well as water rates and charges for both agencies, which collectively serve more than 2 million residents and 40 million annual visitors in Southern Nevada.
Bethel has served in a financial leadership capacity in the utility industry, both regulated and non-regulated, for nearly 30 years. Before joining the Water Authority and Water District in 2018, Bethel was the senior vice president and chief financial officer at NV Energy from 2013 until 2018. Bethel joined NV Energy in 2007 as vice president and chief accounting officer.
Before moving to Nevada, Bethel served as assistant controller for American Electric Power, Inc. in Ohio. Prior experience includes key accounting management positions with The Williams Company, Central & South West Services, and the Public Service Company of Oklahoma.
Bethel earned a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from Oklahoma State University, and he holds his certified public accounting certificate from Oklahoma. Since 2008, Bethel has served as a board member of Opportunity Village, and he is the board’s past treasurer and past audit committee chair. He also served as a Las Vegas Metro Chamber Trustee from late 2013 through September 2018.
An Oklahoma native, Bethel and his wife, Sherry, have lived in Las Vegas since 2007.
Gregory J. Walch, General Counsel
Gregory J. Walch serves as General Counsel for the Southern Nevada Water Authority and the Las Vegas Valley Water District.
As a member of the Water Authority and Water District Executive Teams, he oversees the Legal Department of both agencies.
After receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Engineering from Iowa State University in 1985, Walch spent the next four years as an engineer with Layne Western Company, designing and overseeing construction of water well systems for industrial and municipal clients.
In May 1992, Walch received his Juris Doctor from the Lewis & Clark Northwestern School of Law. He has practiced environmental, water, land use, mining, eminent domain and administrative law, and has regularly appeared before the Nevada State Engineer and other state agencies and administrators, various federal agencies, and state and federal courts in Nevada. In 1996, Walch co-founded the law firm now known as Holley, Driggs, Walch, Puzey & Thompson. Walch has been recognized by Chambers USA, Mountain States Super Lawyers, and Martindale-Hubbell for his work in environmental and natural resources law.
Walch and his wife, Shauna, have two sons, Rowan and Quin.