SCV Water Announces New Director of Water Resources

press release

The Santa Clarita Valley Water Agency has announced Ali Elhassan as its new director of water resources. In his role, he oversees the agency’s water resource management and planning to ensure sufficient water is available to meet the current and future needs of the Santa Clarita Valley.

At a time when water agencies across California are facing droughts, Elhassan brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in water resource planning, the agency said in a prepared statement.

Most recently, he served 10 years as the director of water supply planning for the environmental services of the Metropolitan Council of Minnesota, a regional governing body serving the seven-county Twin Cities metro area.

His responsibilities included leading regional water supply planning, water quality assessment, surface water and aquifer management. In this role, he led the development of a master water supply plan and worked with 126 water utilities, government agencies and other stakeholders. He also oversaw a stormwater harvesting project at a Minnesota ballpark and created two aquifer recharge projects in Northern California to ensure water supplies for water districts.

He also led policy development for water conservation, water reuse, and water stewardship in Minnesota.

“Collaboration is key to successful water resource management,” he said. “Water doesn’t follow political boundaries, so SCV Water’s One Watershed approach is critical and I look forward to working with our partners locally and across the state.”

Additional experience includes 12 years as a senior water resource engineer/scientist in New Mexico and California in the New Mexico office of State Engineer and Robertson-Bryan Inc., a California consulting firm. Elhassan also taught engineering hydrology and groundwater hydrology to elementary school classes as an adjunct faculty member at California State University-Sacramento.

Elhassan holds a master’s degree in environmental engineering from Utsunomiya University, Japan, and a PhD in agricultural engineering from Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology. He received his bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Mechanization from the University of Khartoum, Sudan.

“This is a critical position in our agency that has taken months to fill,” said Steve Cole, SCV Water’s executive director. “I look forward to Ali’s contributions to our agency and the Santa Clarita Valley.”

Elhassan takes over the position from Dirk Marks who retired in December 2021 and worked on an interim basis during recruitment.

Elhassan has relocated to Santa Clarita for the position. He is accompanied by his 22-year-old wife Hanadi. His daughter Suha works for the ethics committee in New Mexico and his son Mohammed is a sophomore at college in New Jersey. Elhassan enjoys soccer, travel, reading and hiking.

Ali Elhasan