Our History

The Illinois Public Works Mutual Aid Network (IPWMAN) started when several groups within the state of Illinois realized that they were trying to develop regional mutual aid organizations. It became apparent that if a disaster hit a region, regional organizations would not be able to provide assistance outside of their own jurisdictions. With the initial backing from the Illinois Water Works Association, and then with support from the Chicago Metro and Illinois Chapters of the American Public Works Association, Illinois Association of County Engineers and Illinois Department of Transportation, agencies from various locations within the state began working on a state-wide mutual aid organization.  Representatives from the Illinois Law Enforcement Alarm System (ILEAS), the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS), Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA), and the Illinois Terrorism Task Force (ITTF) offered support and experience as IPWMAN developed the framework for its organization.

In 2008, the IPWMAN Interim Board of Directors began the task of writing IPWMAN’s articles of incorporation, by-laws, policies and procedures, operations plan and intergovernmental agreement; securing agreements with other mutual aid and emergency response agencies; establishing a call center; and developing a plan for transition into an incorporated organization.

Illinois Public Works Mutual Aid Network (IPWMAN)

IPWMAN Interim Committee Members

David Barber City of Peoria  
Amy Benecke McLaren Peoria County Highway Dept.  
Bruce Bird Macon County Highway Dept.  
Richard Borders City of Decatur  
Walter Burnett City of Macomb  
David Christensen IESMA  
Lenny Gahgan Village of Gurnee  
Rupert Graham Cook County Highway Dept.  
Bill Gray City of Urbana  
Mike Hall Town of Normal  
Betty Harrison Village of Wauconda  
Robert Hawes City of Rock Island  
Leslie Hild Illinois Township Officials  
Chris Isbell Stephenson County Highway Dept. Co-Chairman
Larry Lux APWA Chicago Metro Chapter  
Rick Marley City of Decatur Co-Chairman
Brent Maue Village of Savoy  
Kenneth Miller Village of Mundelein  
Robert Miller Algonquin Township Road District  
Barbara Stiehl City of Urbana  
Nancy Sweeney Southwest Conference of Mayors  
Tony Torres Village of Bolingbrook  
David Van Vooren City of Naperville  
Keith Watson Village of Bartlett  

IPWMAN Advisory Members

Gerald Dietz Law Offices of Gerald T. Dietz
Carolyn Grieves Baxter & Woodman
Geno Koehler IDOT
Kent McKenzie Lake County EMA
Drew Orsinger Dept. of Homeland Security
Dan Smith IEMA
Joe Victor Douglas County EMS

IPWMAN Technical Advisor

Tammy Bennett Clark Dietz, Inc.

In January 2009, IPWMAN was officially incorporated.  Rick Marley, City of Decatur, was the first president; Chris Isbell, Stephenson County, vice-president; and Barb Stiehl, City of Urbana, Secretary/Treasurer. At that time, there were three member agencies: Stephenson County, Village of Wauconda, and the City of Urbana. IPWMAN’s first response to a disaster occurred in May of 2009 when IPWMAN responded to Carterville to assist with clean-up following damaging straight-line winds. In October 2009, the members held their elections and the elected the first Board of Directors.

Since 2009, IPWMAN’s membership has grown to over 250 agencies.  IPWMAN represents public works as a member of the Illinois Terrorism Task Force, has a seat at the State Emergency Operations Center and works with other mutual aid organizations in response to disaster mitigation. IPWMAN has responded to requests for assistance resulting from flooding, tornadoes, wind, etc. several times each year.