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PWSA lands temporary fix to finding permanent director |

PWSA lands temporary fix to finding permanent director

Nate Smallwood | Tribune-Review
Bernard R. Lindstrom, the director of the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority, speaks to the press regarding the boil order at the Allegheny County Emergency Operations Center on Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017.

Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority’s interim director of engineering has been placed in charge of authority operations while the board seeks a new executive director, an official said Wednesday.

PWSA officials gave conflicting accounts about the status of former acting Executive Director Bernard R. Lindstrom, whose contract expired Sunday.

Authority spokesman Will Pickering said PWSA continues to negotiate with the retired Army colonel in an attempt to persuade him to remain at the helm of the troubled agency.

But City Councilwoman Deb Gross of Highland Park, who serves on the PWSA board of directors, said Lindstrom turned down the offer. She said Lindstrom, who previously told the Tribune-Review that he applied for the full-time executive director’s position, preferred to settle into retirement.

“They did everything they could to get him to stay. He said, ‘No,’” Gross said.

She said Robert Weimar, the interim director of engineering, has been placed in charge of authority operations until a replacement is found.

Lindstrom of Upper St. Clair could not be reached for comment.

Gross said a board committee consisting of Chairman Alex Thomson, Paul Leger and Caren Glotfelty was pursuing Lindstrom’s potential replacement, but she declined to name the person.

Lindstrom, a 28-year Army Corps of Engineers veteran, has dealt with one crisis after another since accepting the position in September that paid him $100,000. Troubles included lead-tainted water, a boil-water order for 100,000 city residents and a water main rupture that was draining the authority’s largest reservoirs.

The authority has had five executive directors — interim and permanent — since 2011 and one candidate for the position who accepted the job but withdrew after questions surfaced about his firing from a similar job in South Carolina.

Bob Bauder is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-765-2312 or

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