Senior Leadership

John E. Balliew, President & CEO

John Balliew

Balliew leads all aspects of water, wastewater, reclaimed water and stormwater services for El Paso Water. Balliew is a 30-year veteran of the utility, starting his career at the laboratory in 1983 and holding various positions of increasing responsibility. Before becoming President and CEO in 2013, he was vice president of operations and technical services. Balliew is a registered professional engineer. He was instrumental in shaping the 50-year water resource plan for Far West Texas (Region E).

Marcela Navarrete, VP – Strategic, Financial and Management Services

Marcela Navarrete

In her two decades at El Paso Water, Navarrete worked her way up from accountant to be the first woman Chief Financial Officer and now also leads strategic and management services with scope that includes accounting, procurement, land management, customer service, information technology and human resources. She is credited with driving efficiencies and maintaining the utility’s AA+ bond rating while keeping El Paso Water and wastewater rates among the lowest in Texas. Navarrete holds an accounting degree from The University of Texas at El Paso and is a Certified Public Accountant. She has served on many community and professional Boards and in 2016 was named a Woman of Impact by El Paso Inc.

Gilbert Trejo, VP – Engineering, Operations and Technical Services

Alan Shubert

Trejo oversees engineering, operations and technical services. Previously, he served as Chief Technical Officer. Before coming to El Paso Water in 2014, he was the Principal in charge of Arcadis' Water Division in the El Paso, Texas region. In that role, he led business development, designed and managed projects, and ensured financial performance. Trejo is also past chair and current board member for the WateReuse Association and served on the board with the Water Research Foundation. He is a published author on water reuse and water infrastructure topics. He is a licensed professional engineer in the State of Texas and a Certified Floodplain Manager. Trejo earned a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Texas at El Paso and a Master of Science in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering from the University of Texas, Austin.

Daniel Ortiz, General Counsel

LeeAnn Koehler

In 2020, El Paso Water named Ortiz to serve as chief legal counsel for the Public Service Board, the President/CEO and management on a variety of legal issues relating to El Paso Water. Prior to that, he served as Assistant General Counsel for El Paso Water. He has also served as Assistant City Attorney for the City of El Paso and Assistant District Attorney for the 34th Judicial District of Texas. Ortiz holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Stanford University and a Juris Doctor from American University’s Washington College of Law. He is admitted to practice law in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas and in Texas courts. Ortiz is a member of the Federal Bar Association, the American Bar Association, State Bar of Texas, and El Paso Bar Association. 

Lisa Franklin Rosendorf, Chief Communications & Government Affairs Officer


Rosendorf joined El Paso Water in 2015 and oversees communications and government affairs and the TecH2O Center, which leads conservation and educational outreach. Rosendorf brings more than 25 years of expertise in the public affairs arena. Before coming to the utility, she served as division leader for communications and government affairs at Los Alamos National Laboratory. She has in-house and agency experience creating strategies to help Fortune 500 companies to be effective in corporate communications, government relations, community relations and crisis management. Rosendorf has a Bachelor’s degree in Communication from Trinity University.

Art Duran, Chief Financial Officer

Art Duran

Duran is a 20-year veteran with the water utility. He started his career as an accountant and worked his way up through increasing levels of responsibility and promotions to Chief Financial Officer in 2012. Duran obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from University of Texas at El Paso in 1993. During his time with El Paso Water, the utility has received the Government Finance Officers Association Distinguished Budget Presentation Award for its annual budget document and the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for the utility’s annual financial statements.

Irazema Solis Rojas, Chief Technical Officer


Rojas oversees the technical services portfolio for the utility, which includes engineering, planning and development, and project and construction management. Previously, she served as the Capital Improvements Program Manager. She has progressively held various technical and managerial positions at El Paso Water since 1997. Rojas has served in leadership roles in professional organizations, including the American Society of Civil Engineers - El Paso Branch, American Water Work Association (AWWA) Desert Mountain Chapter, WateReuse Association - Texas Section, and Texas AWWA. She is a licensed professional engineer and holds a Bachelor and Master of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Texas at El Paso.

Felipe Lopez, Chief Operations Officer - Distribution and Collection

LeeAnn KoehlerLopez oversees maintenance, construction and repairs of the water distribution and wastewater collection systems. Lopez’s career in city civil service began in 1997 in the Metropolitan Planning Organization and later in the City Engineering Department. He then joined El Paso Water in 1999. He promoted through the engineering ranks and managed every section in engineering before moving to operations in 2018. Lopez earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Texas at Arlington in 1996. He is a licensed professional engineer in Texas and New Mexico and a veteran of the United States Marine Corps.

Martin Noriega, Chief Operations Officer - Support


Noriega oversees Stormwater Operations and Fleet Maintenance. Noriega began his service to the utility in 1997 as a Well Production Field Operator. In 2002, he left the city for a year but returned to the City Engineering Department, where he worked for seven years. In 2010, he returned to EPWater as a Utility Engineer. He was later promoted to Stormwater Operations Manager and then became a division manager, with added responsibility for fleet maintenance. Noriega holds three degrees from the University of Texas at El Paso: a B.S. in Civil Engineering, an M.S. in Construction Management and a M.S. in Water Resources Engineering Management. He is a licensed professional engineer and a veteran of the United States Air Force.

Gisela Dagnino , Chief Operations Officer - Stormwater


Dagnino oversees the Stormwater Utility, which encompasses Stormwater Operations and Stormwater Technical Services.  Dagnino is a 20-year veteran with the water utility. She started her career as a temporary Engineering Technician and worked her way up the ranks by holding various positions of increasing levels of responsibility in water, wastewater and stormwater engineering services at the utility.  She was nominated and selected to serve on the Texas Water Development Board’s Upper Rio Grande Flood Planning Group, which is responsible for producing the regional flood plan for 23 counties.  Dagnino has a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the Universidad Autonoma de Ciudad Juarez in Mexico.  She is a licensed Professional Engineer in the State of Texas, a Certified Floodplain Manager, and a Construction Document Technologist.

Alfredo Solano, Chief Information Officer

GTrejo4x8836Solano oversees all aspects of Information Technology as well as the Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) Department, which manages the automation and control of the utility’s infrastructure. Solano has been with El Paso Water for almost 20 years, beginning his tenure as a Programmer/Analyst. He promoted through technical and managerial positions before becoming the Chief Information Officer. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Mathematics from the University of Texas at El Paso.

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