Chieftain reporter bails for agency job

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Former reporter and editor Chris Woodka has written reams about the Pueblo Reservoir and other water projects. - FILE PHOTO
  • File photo
  • Former reporter and editor Chris Woodka has written reams about the Pueblo Reservoir and other water projects.
Chris Woodka, one of the most learned journalist on water issues in the state, has left the Pueblo Chieftain.

Today is his first day as issues management program coordinator for the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District, which was created decades ago to develop and administer the Fryingpan-Arkansas Project, which includes Pueblo Reservoir.

"My responsibilities include project management for the Arkansas Valley Conduit and other projects already underway at the district," he tells us via email. "This involves communication and coordination between the federal agencies involved in the planning and construction of the conduit with the communities which will benefit."

Woodka was the editor of a small daily newspaper in Santa Paula, Calif., before coming to Colorado where he initially worked at a weekly in CaƱon City.

He joined the Chieftain in 1985 and has focused almost exclusively on water issues for the past 12 years.

Go here for more detailed information about his background.

"I am extremely excited about using the knowledge I have gained during my journalism career and applying it to projects that will benefit thousands of people by improving their economic well-being and health," he says.

The conservancy's board includes former Colorado Springs Utilities employee Curtis Mitchell and Mark Pifher, who still works for Utilities.

The agency receives about $7 million a year in property taxes from nine counties, including El Paso County.

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