Erie County
Water Authority
Providing Water You Can Trust


The Board of Commissioners of the ECWA wish to reinforce their commitment to improving the quality of life for the more than 165,000 residential and commercial customers that rely on the ECWA's dependable service everyday. The ECWA operates solely for the benefit of its customers. We look forward to continuing our efforts at positioning the organization to efficiently provide customers the same quality and professional service they have come to expect from the ECWA.



Appointed April 2012

Francis G. Warthling is serving his second term as Commissioner of the Erie County Water Authority (ECWA), and was recently elected by his colleagues to serve his first term as Chairman. He comes to the ECWA with more than twenty four years of private sector business management experience.

Mr. Warthling is the owner of Warthling Properties, LLC. , a property management group whose portfolio includes nearly 150 commercial and residential properties. He is also the Vice President of Diamond Cutters of Western New York, a wholesale and retail jewelry business with locations in downtown Buffalo and Lackawanna. His jewelry business enjoys the distinction of being the only certified diamond cutting operation in Western New York. Fran also helps manage Curly's Grill & Banquet Center, a family owned and operated restaurant, banquet facility and catering business, now enjoying a renaissance under the guidance of the family's third generation of ownership.

Mr. Warthling also continues to serve on numerous civic and community based organizations based in his lifelong hometown of Lackawanna, including the Lackawanna Planning Board, Lackawanna Board of Education Audit Committee, Lackawanna Chamber of Commerce and as Chairman of the Lackawanna Democratic Committee.

He resides in the City of Lackawanna with his wife Joyce and two children.



Jerome D. Schad was appointed a Commissioner in November 2013 and is serving his first term. A graduate of Geneva College, Duquesne University and the University at Buffalo Law School, he was admitted into law in New York State in 1972 and his private practice legal career spans 35 years.

A former partner at Hodgson Russ LLP, Mr. Schad focused on tort, commercial and civil litigation, state and federal law compliance related to disability and represented and advised private and public entities. He has litigated cases In the New York State Supreme Court and the United States District Court for the Western New York District. Mr. Schad has also managed appeals to the Third and Fourth Appellate Divisions of the Supreme Court and New York State Court of Appeals.

Most recently Mr. Schad was Majority Counsel to the Erie County Legislature where he provided counsel on matters related to the Erie County Charter and state and federal laws impacting the operation of county government.

He resides in the Town of Amherst with his wife, Priscilla. They have have six children and eleven grandchildren.



Appointed May 2011

Earl L. Jann was appointed to his first term in May 2011. A graduate of Canisius College, he is retired after 36 years of private sector experience in the pharmaceutical business.

Mr. Jann previously was a councilman for 7 years and Supervisor of the Town of Marilla for 7½ years. He also served on the Marilla Planning Board as Chairman. He has been active in his Church as well as active in the Moose, East Aurora Fish and Game Club as well as several other organizations.

Mr. Jann currently resides in the Town of Aurora with his wife Barbara. They have four adult children and nine grandchildren.



Robert F. Gaylord was appointed Executive Director at ECWA in November 2013. A graduate of Hamilton College and a Certified Trust and Financial Advisor (CTFA), Gaylord has extensive experience and an outstanding record of achievement in the financial and public sectors.

Mr. Gaylord worked in the banking industry for more than 33 years; first at M&T Bank, then Key Trust, and most recently as Vice President and Senior Trust Officer for the past 15 years at HSBC. Throughout his career at some of Western New York's most prominent financial institutions, he earned a strong reputation for his management, financial analysis, problem solving and relationship building skills.

He also has a long history of public service as the Town of Collins Supervisor for 20 years and as Town Councilmember for four years. Mr. Gaylord is also very active in several community and government organizations and local economic development initiatives, including Academy Place Advisory Council, Gowanda Area Redevelopment Corporation, Collins Public Library, Gowanda Correctional Facilities and the former Tri-County Memorial Hospital.

Mr. Gaylord resides in the Village of Gowanda with his wife Sandy. They have five adult children and seven grandchildren.



Appointed by Board of Commissioners October 1, 2007

Robert J. Lichtenthal, Jr. was appointed Deputy Director of the Erie County Water Authority (ECWA) effective 10/1/07. He has over thirty years of private and public sector management experience, primarily in the fields of financial planning and control, with a focus on budgeting and cash flow planning.

Since 1990 he has worked in municipal government and municipal utility management, specifically sewer, water and electric utilities. From October 1990 until mid 1997, Mr. Lichtenthal served as the Administrator for the Village of Bergen in Genesee County, New York where he directed all financial operations of the village government and its utilities.

In April 1996, he was appointed to a three-year term on the ECWA.s Board of Commissioners. He was subsequently reappointed in 1999, 2002, and 2005.

Mr. Lichtenthal holds a Bachelor of Science degree and an MBA with a concentration in Financial Planning and Control from the School of Management at the State University of New York at Buffalo.

He resides in the Town of Newstead.



Appointed by Board of Commissioners July 15, 1996

Wesley Dust is a Professional Engineer and currently serves as Executive Engineer of the Erie County Water Authority (ECWA). He has 29 years of various engineering and managerial experience in the fields of utility operations, construction management, regulatory compliance, contract administration, facility management, design and resident engineering.

From 1990 to 1996, Wes was the Senior Distribution Engineer at the ECWA where he was responsible for the operation and maintenance of the transmission and distribution systems.

Before joining the ECWA, Wes was an Associate at Malcolm Pirnie, Inc. where he managed and coordinated construction administration, resident inspections and filed survey work for the Buffalo Regional office. From 1983 to 1985, he was a Project Engineer at Birdair Structures. Prior to that, Wes was a Project Engineer at Malcolm Pirnie, Inc. and an Engineer at Black and Veatch from 1975 to 1981.

Wes is a member of several professional organizations, including the Western New York American Public Works Association, the American Water Works Association and the Erie County Agricultural Society.

He resides in the Town of West Seneca.

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