Edward A. Bettinger, R.S., M.S.
Environmental Health Program Consultant
Florida Department of Health, Division of Environmental Health, Bureau of Water Programs
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1742
Ed Bettinger is an environmental health program consultant for the Florida Department of Health in Tallahassee, Florida. Mr. Bettinger serves as the FDOH’s statewide manager for the Florida Safe Drinking Water Act Program and for the department’s responsibilities within the state’s water well construction program. He works within the Division of Environmental Health’s Bureau of Water Programs, and is involved drinking water issues, affecting both public and private water systems.
Mr. Bettinger began his career with the State of Florida in 1986 as an environmental health specialist for the Volusia County Health Department. During the period of 1986 through 1994 he assumed several responsibilities within the environmental health section of the health department. In 1991 he was promoted into the Volusia CHD’s environmental health engineering section to assist in fully implementing the Florida Safe Drinking Water Program when the CHD first received delegation from the state to oversee the program in Volusia County. He worked as an environmental specialist in that program up until 1994. In April of 1994 he received a promotion and moved to Tallahassee to become the drinking water program coordinator of the FDOH.
Mr. Bettinger has enjoyed his career in addressing Florida’s environmental health issues. Working with dedicated professionals that are innovative and knowledgeable about the issues affecting Florida’s water supplies has provided him with great direction and satisfaction, and he looks forward to continuing these efforts for several years to come.
Leadership Development Opportunities
During the past year, my participation in the Environmental Public Health Leadership Institute enhanced both my professional and personal development. The institute’s curriculum, especially the introduction to the “Systems Thinking” approach for evaluating and addressing problem areas was exceptional. The curriculum, my team, and the various issues I encountered during the execution of my project enhanced my leadership skills as a professional, and the things I learned about myself through my individual development plan has made me a better person.
I now look at problems with a different view, and I’m better able to address unintended consequences in solving those problems. I also enjoyed working with my mentor, Tim Jenkins and my team members. Our team had a great camaraderie, and I learned several things from my team during my participation in the EPHLI. It was also interesting hearing from my team and other participants about some of the specific environmental health issues that they were addressing in their states, and the differences in the environmental health programs around the country. In all, participation in the EPHLI was a great experience for me, and it allowed me to develop a successful project that will have a lasting impact on those Florida residents that were identified with arsenic contaminated water wells. They now have a safe source of drinking water for themselves and their families, and an added degree of public health intervention and protection was provided in that region of the state.