How We're Organized
The Governing Board appoints the agency's Executive Director (subject to approval by the Governor, and confirmation by the Florida Senate). The Executive Director carries out the Board's directives.
Drew Bartlett, Executive Director
Contact: Gina Kamak
Drew Bartlett serves as the Executive Director of the South Florida Water Management District, the biggest water management district in the state of Florida. The District is responsible for Everglades restoration, the largest ecosystem restoration effort in the world. In addition, the agency is responsible for regional water supply and flood protection infrastructure.
The agency’s Governing Board appointed Drew Bartlett as Executive Director in 2019, and he was unanimously confirmed by the Florida Senate in 2020. During his tenure, Director Bartlett expedited Everglades projects like the EAA Reservoir, implemented major water quality improvement and monitoring efforts, and advanced the resiliency of the region’s water resources.
Having spent a lifetime in public service, he previously served as the Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Deputy Secretary for Ecosystem Restoration, where he was responsible for setting water quality standards, establishing restoration goals, and adopting restoration plans. Director Bartlett also held senior roles at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency where he was responsible for implementing the Clean Water Act and Safe Drinking Water Act.
Director Bartlett holds a B.S. Degree in Industrial Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and received a Master's Degree in Business Administration from Georgia State University.
John Mitnik, Assistant Executive Director
Contact: Lourdes Elias
John Mitnik serves as the Assistant Executive Director and Chief District Engineer. He previously served as Engineering and Construction Bureau Chief after working as a section administrator and a supervising engineer with that group. Before joining the District in 2004, he worked as an environmental administrator and engineer for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.
Mitnik has a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering from the University of Florida and an MBA specializing in Environmental Resource Management from Florida Atlantic University. He is a professional engineer registered in the state of Florida.
Mitnik manages around-the-clock water control operations and monitoring of the regional water management system and coordination with local entities. He also supervises the inspection and refurbishment of existing facilities, along with the design and construction of new projects and infrastructure.
Jennifer Smith, Chief of Staff
Contact: Gina Kamak
The Chief of Staff provides strategic counsel to key leaders within organization and is critical in supporting a successful leadership team. The Chief of Staff serves as strategic advisor and counsel to the executive team assuming day-to-day responsibility for projects and tasks creating and maintaining agency-wide relationships to assure leadership success.
Maricruz R. Fincher, General Counsel
Contact: Kimberly Nisip
Maricruz R. Fincher served as an attorney in the District's Office of Counsel from March 2016 to June 2018. She rejoined the District in June of 2022 as Acting Managing Attorney for the Everglades and Environmental Law section of the Office of Counsel. Before Ms. Fincher rejoined the District, she served as counsel for the City of Franklin, TN, providing legal counsel and representation to the City's commissions and departments in various areas. Ms. Fincher has over 14 years of legal experience representing local and state governmental entities. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Florida International University, and a Juris Doctorate from Florida State University College of Law.
As General Counsel, she provides and supervises legal services in support of the agency's mission responsibilities. The Office of Counsel provides the legal framework for advancing and accelerating the District's projects and priorities. Ms. Fincher leads a team that includes attorneys, paralegals, and administrative professionals, each with unique backgrounds and expertise that allows the Office to think creatively and provide diverse perspectives on every issue. The Office consists of two distinct sections, one focusing on the District's mission to restore the Everglades and create sound environmental policy, and another focusing on governmental law, civil litigation, and legal disputes involving federal and state environmental law. The Office of Counsel also has a dedicated Labor and Employment Specialist.
Sean Cooley, Chief Communications and Public Policy Officer, Office of Communications and Public Engagement
Contact: Yailenis Rodriguez
Sean Cooley leads the Office of Communications and Public Engagement at the South Florida Water Management District. In his role as the Chief Communications and Public Policy Officer, Cooley is responsible for connecting people to the District’s important restoration, flood protection and water supply work. Cooley provides leadership to the Office of the Open Government and Media Relations, Office of the District Clerk, Communications, and Community/Government Relations functions. He also serves as the District’s ombudsman.
The agency’s communications and public engagement efforts include government and community relations, media relations, public records, district clerk, governing board, website, internal communications, events, design, publications, video production, social media, crisis/emergency communications, and public outreach.
He has worked in various communications leadership roles in the non-governmental and public sectors and was previously the Florida Communications Director for a national conservation organization. Cooley frequently serves as an adjunct university professor and lecturer. He has both undergraduate and graduate degrees in communications from The Florida State University and also holds graduate certifications in public administration and project management. When not in the office, Cooley enjoys birding and spending time exploring America’s Everglades.
Jill Creech, P.E., Division Director, Regulation
Contact: Lourdes Elias
Jill Creech, P.E., joined the District as the Regulation Division Director in February 2016 after serving five years as director of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Southeast District Office in West Palm Beach. In addition to her public service experience with South Florida's regulated community, Creech brings an extensive private sector background to the District. She was president and co-owner of her own engineering firm for 18 years. Creech has a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and is a registered professional engineer in the state of Florida. Creech manages the agency's regulatory programs, which help protect, manage and improve regional water resources. The District's streamlined permitting process and online database provide ready access to historical and current regulatory information, including pending applications.
Lawrence Glenn, Division Director, Water Resources
Contact: Lourdes Elias
Lawrence Glenn serves as Director of the Water Resources Division. He previously served as Administrator of the Coastal Ecosystems and the Lake and River Ecosystems Sections in the Applied Sciences Bureau. He joined the District in 1996 to work on the Kissimmee River Restoration Project.
Glenn manages the Water Supply, Water Quality, and Applied Sciences Bureaus at the District. He supervises the water quality monitoring conducted across the District, updating of regional water supply plans, rulemaking for Minimum Flow and Levels and Water Reservations, and scientific monitoring to evaluate ecological conditions in the District’s lakes, rivers, estuaries, and Greater Everglades including Florida Bay.
Glenn is the Co-Chairman of the South Florida Environmental Restoration Task Force Science Coordination Group and serves on the RECOVER Leadership Group. Glenn has a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Master of Science in Biology from Florida Atlantic University.
Candida Heater, Division Director, Administrative Services
Contact: Candy McCulloch
The Director of Administrative Services manages the day-to-day business/administrative support operations for the District including budget, finance, procurement, human resources and performance metrics.
Lisa Koehler, Big Cypress Basin Administrator
Lisa Koehler is the Big Cypress Basin Administrator. She has worked for the District for 11 years and previously served as a Policy and Planning Analyst after working as an Outreach and Media Specialist. In her current role, she provides leadership for the activities, projects and management of the local flood control system, implements Basin Board policy and oversees the development of the Basin’s budget.
Koehler has lived in Florida over 20 years and grew up in Illinois where she received her B.S. in Geology/Geography, with a minor in Business from Illinois State University and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from University of Illinois.
Koehler is a graduate of Leadership Collier and is an active member in the Leadership Collier Alumni Foundation. She also works with the Collier Education Foundation, Take Stock in Children program. Throughout her career, Koehler has worked extensively with the public, working with elected officials, restructuring organizations and functions, project management and budget preparation.
Carolina Maran, Ph.D., P.E., Chief of District Resiliency
Carolina Maran, Ph.D., P.E. is the Chief of District Resiliency with the South Florida Water Management District. In her role, she is responsible for coordinating resilience efforts across federal, state, regional and local agencies, advancing scientific research and data analysis to ensure the District’s resilience planning and projects are founded on the best available science; and, developing and implementing comprehensive resiliency goals to mitigate and adapt to the challenges facing the District’s infrastructure from sea level rise and other climate change impacts.
Carolina has nearly 20 years of experience working on water resources planning, management, and regulation; water and climate resiliency; water allocation rules and conflict resolution; hydrologic and hydraulic modeling, decision support systems and GIS. Prior to joining SFWMD, Carolina was the Water Manager at Broward County, worked over 10 years as a Water Resources Specialist for the Federal Water Agency in Brazil, and collaborated with International Organizations as part of technical consulting teams.
She holds a Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering – Water Resources from Colorado State University and a Master’s Degree in Water Resources Engineering from Parana Federal University in Brazil. Currently, she serves on the Florida Water and Climate Alliance Steering Committee, Southeast Florida Regional Climate Compact Steering Committee, and on the Board of Directors of South Florida Hydrologic Society and the Resilient Utility Coalition.
Mom of two incredible boys, Carolina enjoys watching them play little league baseball and visiting new places with her family.
Duane Piper, Division Director, Information Technology
Contact: Ashley Mangual
Duane Piper became the agency's Chief Information Officer in 2011. He brings 25 years of Information Technology experience, including 11 years at the District and 14 years in the private sector, helping businesses remain competitive through the efficient use of technology. His experience with large information systems in complex operational environments includes international and multi-site settings in the manufacturing, database and publishing industries.
Piper earned his Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Florida Atlantic University and a Master of Science in Management of Technology from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He is also a Certified Project Manager (PMP) and a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).
Additionally, Piper serves on the Technical Advisory Committee for the Palm Beach County School Board.
Information Technology supports critical work throughout the agency. Piper supervises network infrastructure, systems engineering, software applications, data security and desktop resources. He and his staff enable District functions that include Everglades restoration modeling, project planning and design, geospatial mapping and water resource and water supply monitoring and analysis. They also manage systems that support the agency’s financial and regulatory operations.
Jennifer Reynolds, Division Director, Ecosystem Restoration
Contact: Lourdes Elias
Jennifer Reynolds serves as the Director for Ecosystem Restoration. Before joining the District in March 2020, she served in the United States Army for 24 years as an active duty engineer. In addition to her time working on Everglades restoration with the U.S. Army Corps, she brings experience managing emergency operations and supporting efforts in more than 90 countries worldwide.
Reynolds has worked on unique international capital projects including the Mosul Dam, health clinics, schools, and wastewater treatment plants in Iraq; Kajaki Dam and the national electricity system in Afghanistan; building maintenance facilities and road repair in Bosnia; base camp design and construction in Kosovo; and construction of training facilities in Germany.
Reynolds has a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resource Management from Western Illinois University, a Master of Military Art and Science degree from the US Army School of Advanced Military Studies, and an MA in Procurement and Acquisitions from Webster University.
Reynolds manages the District’s projects and programs to restore America’s Everglades and the mosaic of ecosystems and estuaries that comprise the landscape of South Florida. She also supervises the design, construction, survey, modeling, and analysis teams that inform and execute the District’s restoration projects and infrastructure investments.
Lucine Dadrian, Division Director, Engineering, Construction and Modeling
Contact: Pamela Robinson
Lucine Dadrian leads the Division of Engineering, Construction and Modeling. Lucine has been with the District for 15 years and most recently served as the Project Management Section Administrator in the Engineering & Construction Bureau. Lucine is a Professional Engineer with coastal and civil expertise and more than 26 years of experience. She’s supported the implementation of some of the District’s most complex and important projects including A-2 STA, the South Dade Seepage Cut-off Wall, and the two phased expansion of STA-1W.
She’s also helped oversee the implementation of design and construction in support of the District’s $4.1B five-year Capital Improvement Program, which includes the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP), Central Everglades Planning Project (CEPP), Restoration Strategies, Northern Everglades & Estuary Protection Program, and Operations & Maintenance (O&M) Refurbishments for our flood control system.
Her prior experience includes 12 years in the private sector involved in remotely operated vehicles, ports and harbors, beach renourishments and dredging, and maritime related infrastructure projects. Lucine has a Bachelor of Science in Ocean Engineering from Florida Atlantic University. She is a professional engineer registered in the State of Florida.
Rich Virgil, Division Director, Field Operations
Contact: Lourdes Elias
As Director of Field Operations Rich Virgil manages the operations and maintenance functions conducted by the agency's eight field stations to provide year-round water management system readiness. He also supervises the District's canal and levee rights-of-way.
Rich Virgil came to the District in 1997 from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. In his most recent role as the Bureau Chief for Infrastructure Management his duties included oversight of the District’s engineering inspection program. Responsibilities included identification of deficiencies within the water management system in order to generate recommendations for corrective action and prioritization of capital repairs. Rich’s extensive knowledge of the District’s water management system gives him the tools necessary to effectively manage Field Operations.
Rich received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the State University of New York Polytechnical Institute in Utica. He holds a Professional Engineering License in Civil Engineering in both the State of Florida and New York and is a Certified Project Management Professional.