Wastewater Plant operator Tim Manuel was named Fairhope’s 2015 Employee of the Year. Manuel has worked for the City of Fairhope since 1994, all of that time in the water department, starting on repair crews and rising through the ranks.
In naming Manuel for the honor, Mayor Tim Kant noted his dedication to his job and to his community.
“Tim has been an excellent employee for all the years he’s been with us,” Kant said. “He’s worked to earn the certification he’s needed, and he always does what needs to be done. He’s been especially valuable as the city has completed upgrades to the wastewater treatment plant. We have many fine employees in the City of Fairhope, and Tim sets a good example for all.”
Dan McCrory, Water Superintendent, said Manuel is the kind of employee every supervisor wants.
“When I promoted him to plant manager he just took the lead, and he’s done a tremendous job for the city,” McCrory said. “We’re in the final stages of completing upgrades to the plant now, and Tim’s passion for Mobile Bay, for protecting the water of the Bay, is something he always thinks about on the job.”
A native of Louisiana, Manuel came to Fairhope to play baseball for Faulkner State.
“I fell in love with a Fairhope woman and with this area, and I knew I wanted to stay. My wife, Tammy, and I have been married for 22 years,” he said. “The Bay is a tremendous asset to our area, and it’s important that we do all we can to keep it clean. We use ultraviolet to treat the water, we don’t chlorinate, so we are not putting additional chemicals into the Bay. The latest wastewater treatment plant upgrades are all about reducing the phosphorous and nitrogen levels of the water we release into the by. By not putting any of those nutrients back into the Bay, we protect against algae blooms and fish kills. That’s not been a real problem in the Bay—yet—but we don’t want it to start.”
Manuel’s community involvement includes 14 years coaching and serving on the board for Fairhope Youth Baseball as well as other youth sports his sons have been involved in. He and Tammy have two sons: Nicholas, a freshman at Troy State, and Braden, a sophomore at Fairhope High School.
“It means a lot to me,” Manuel said. “It feels pretty neat to be recognized like this.”
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