'Golden Manhole' awarded to Chattanooga area man - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

'Golden Manhole' awarded to Chattanooga area man

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Cleveland Grimes Cleveland Grimes

Some men are born to greatness; others have greatness thrust upon them.

And some make outstanding contributions to the field of wastewater management systems.

That was the case for Cleveland Grimes, who posthumously received the Golden Manhole Award from the Kentucky-Tennessee Water Environment Association at the KTWEA’s Professional’s Conference in Knoxville.  

The award is presented to those who have dedicated their careers to the wastewater collection field and have made outstanding contributions in the area of wastewater collection systems.

According to Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger, it’d be hard to find a more deserving recipient than Chattanooga native Cleveland Grimes.

“This recognition is another reminder of what a great civil servant Cleveland was,” said Mayor Coppinger.

If ever there was such a thing as a highly decorated wastewater manager, Grimes fit the bill.

After graduating from Brainerd High School and then Memphis State University, Grimes went on to serve Hamilton County for 35 years, including nine as Executive Director for the Hamilton County Water and Wastewater Treatment Authority.

Over the course of his career, Grimes received the Hamilton County Service Award and the Employer Service Award from the US Secretary of Defense.

The Tennessee State Legislature honored Grimes with a resolution recognizing his service on his passing in 2016.

Grime’s wife Mary Knaff and WWTA Project Designer Charles Webb accepted the award on his behalf.

"My only regret,” said Mayor Coppinger, “is Cleveland is not with us to receive in person yet another acknowledgement by his peers of his outstanding leadership.”

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