Gary Bostrom — “Bob Appel Friend of the Arkansas River”

Arkansas River Basin via The Encyclopedia of Earth

From the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District via The Pueblo Chieftain:

His career included shepherding Colorado Springs’ water supply through a labyrinth of changing regulations and requirements during a time when the city experienced explosive growth and environmental pressures.

Now he’s working to improve water supplies throughout the entire Arkansas River basin.

Gary Bostrom, 60, retired water services chief for Colorado Springs Utilities and now a member of the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District board, received the Bob Appel Friend of the Arkansas River award [April 27, 2017] at the Arkansas River Basin Water Forum.

“It’s a great honor to be recognized, and to be included among all of the past winners of this award,” Bostrom said.

The forum met last week in Colorado Springs.

“I’d like to wake on the morning they turned on the switch for Southern Delivery System, and retire in the afternoon,” Bostrom once told a reporter.

He didn’t quite make the finish line, retiring in 2015, about a year before SDS went online. The $825 million pipeline project was completed in April 2016, after a 20-year planning process that required negotiations with communities up and down the Arkansas River.

Bostrom’s concern for Arkansas Valley water issues continues. He joined to the Southeastern District board in 2009, and is now vice president.

The district annually allocates supplemental water to cities and farms in the Arkansas River basin, participates in the Upper Arkansas River voluntary flow management program, is constructing a hydropower plant at Pueblo Dam and is preparing for construction of the Arkansas Valley Conduit.

Bostrom also is a member of the Colorado Springs Parks and Recreation Advisory Board.

He and his wife Sara have four children and three grandchildren and live in Colorado Springs.

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