Get to Know Aqua: Executive Secretary Vickie Carrillo


How long have you been with Aqua?

This December it will be ten (10) years.

What is your title/what are your responsibilities?

Executive Secretary, I have many responsibilities, I support the VP of Customer Operations along with the Deputy Chief Operating Officer.  I’m also responsible for three direct reports, and assisting ACO with their admin needs.



What do you like to do outside of work?

I like crafting, baking, spending time with my family and relaxing.  Basically enjoy life and live it to the fullest.

How long have you owned your baking business?

I’ve been baking for more than fifteen (15) years. 



When did you first start baking?

When I got my easy bake oven as a child.

What do you like about it?

I like the fact that I can take different ingredients and make something amazing.  I love making something that looks great and tastes great.  I really enjoy baking for others and seeing their satisfied expression with the final product.

What do you make?

I make cookies, cakes, cheese cakes, pies, puddings, cookie pops, cake pops, lollipops, cupcake flower bouquets, and cupcake stiletto shoes. I design and arrange for custom occasions: baby showers, retirements, birthday parties, holidays and just because.  I also like to bake things that I have not baked before.  I like to challenge myself.

Which is your favorite?

I do not know what my favorite is but based on demand I would say the cupcakes.


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Get to Know Aqua: Estimator Paul Gabage

1.    My name is: Paul Gabage

2.    When I was a kid, my nickname was: Paulie

3.    My title is: Estimator

4.    That means I (do what?): I create the cost estimates for the design planning of the capital infrastructure improvements.

5.    I work with water for a living, but my favorite water-related activity is: Painting with watercolors.

6.    If I had to pick three words to describe myself, they’d be: Passionate, musician, artist

7.    Favorite weekend activity: spending time with friends

8.    Since I work at water utility, people always ask me: why I don’t do artwork for a living. I answer them: “You do know why they call them starving artists, right?”

9.    Since I started working at Aqua, the most fun I experienced was: Putting together a band with my coworkers.

10.I love water, because: Without it I can’t use my water colors.

11.The most interesting thing I’ve crossed off my “Bucket List” is: I haven’t been able to cross anything off my bucket list yet. I’ll keep you posted on big things to come!

12.My coworkers don’t know this, but I’m actually a big fan of: country music

13.In the summer, you can find me: In an air-conditioned room. I never was a fan of summer.

14.Favorite childhood toy: drums

15.When I was a kid, I always thought I’d grow up to be: A drummer for a rock band

16.Do you have any pets? (Name, Age, Type): We have three Doxies: Molly, 11, Abbey, 10, and Jake, 7.

17.The last time I dressed up for Halloween I went as: A guy with hair!

18.If I could be one movie character, I would be: Batman because who doesn’t want to be Batman?? Even Sheldon from “The Big Bang Theory” wants to be Batman!

19.My favorite “guilty pleasure” snack is: Dark chocolate

20.Don’t tell anybody, but I’ve always had a celebrity crush on: Julia Roberts

21.If I weren’t working at Aqua, I would be: A drawing teacher, a portrait artist or a professional musician.

22.What do you like to do outside of work: Enjoy time with my wife!

23.When did you first start your art: I have been drawing ever since I can remember, so I can say since kindergarten. I’ll never forget the smell and enjoyment from finger painting. I found that everything I saw I wanted to draw.

24.What inspires you: I am inspired by everything visual and musical. Reproducing the models essence is what inspires me as well as creating a meaning and a defining storyline within the composition. My music is a different experience of inspiration. I enjoy being a part of the process as a team in creating original music that moves individuals emotionally and brings them to their feet in enjoyment.

25.What kind of artwork do you gravitate toward: I gravitate toward portrait and figurative artwork. The masters’ works, such as Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Degas, and Merritt Chase — to name a few — are truly inspirational.

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Employee Spotlight - Eileen Laird

Aqua New Jersey employee, Eileen Laird, was awarded First Place in the Figure Masters Division at the NPC (National Physique Committee) Eastern USA Championships at the end of October.  The NPC is the amateur bodybuilding division of the International Federation of Body Building. Eileen works in Hamilton, New Jersey as an administrative assistant for state president, Nicholas Asselta.

Eileen has been a Master Figure Athlete with Bombshell Fitness for three years and takes her water consumption very seriously. She drinks between a gallon and a gallon-and-a-half of water each day when preparing for a competition.

“I trust Aqua to give me the best quality water, all day, everyday,”  she said. “My water consumption is crucial to my stamina and endurance in and out of the gym.”


Eileen wasn’t always so disciplined. A few years ago, at age 50, she was in danger of developing adult-onset diabetes as well as osteoporosis. Rather than letting her situation worsen, she made some dietary adjustments, purchased a treadmill and started lifting a few weights in her basement.

In 2013, after a year of training on her own and improving her health, Eileen was inspired by her newfound hobby. She needed a new obstacle to overcome (and check a box off of her bucket list), so she entered her a bodybuilding competition. With help from Gennifer Strobo of Bombshell Fitness, an IFBB professional, she started down a road that led to her passion.

Today, Eileen is a fitness competition regular. She has competed in numerous events, most recently attended the Eastern USA Championship and won first place in the Women’s Figure Master Over 50 division (she also came in fifth in a separate division). She is a nationally qualified NPC athlete and is already preparing for the 2016 championship. 

Outside of her decorated competition career, Eileen’s passion has also led to partnerships with Revolutionary Technology Nutrition, a fitness supplement company, and Elite 1 Fit Gear, an athletic apparel company. She also still works with Bombshell Fitness as one of their specialist.

“I love what I do and I am blessed to be in the best shape of my life instead of struggling with feeling over the hill,” Eileen said. “I have gained strength physically as well as mentally and I hope to inspire others to work to improve their health and general well-being through proper nutrition and exercise.

She added, “as a result of these lifestyle changes, I have reversed the threat of diabetes and no longer fear osteoporosis or growing older. Age is truly just a number. My number one answer when asked what one fitness tip is most important, I always say drink more water!”

A mother of three, Eileen also has received her black belt in Tang So Doo Karate and enjoys cooking and riding with her husband, Tom, on his Harley.


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What We're Thankful For

It's that time of year again! 
As we all sit around the dinner table for Thanksgiving with family and friends to recognize what we are most thankful for, the Aqua team would like to thank the people who make clean and accessible water a possibility: our employees. Their dedication to their trade helps build a stronger and more reliable water infrastructure and a closer bond with the customers we serve.
With winter weather approaching, our crews will work tirelessly to respond to emergencies and ensure water service through even the harshest of polar vortexes. We are thankful for our employees' hard-work and daily commitment to excellent service in some times unpredictable conditions, long hours and plenty of service requests.
Whether you work in the lab, at a call center, or out in the field, we can not thank you enough for your work. Happy Thanksgiving! 
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Imposter Alert: Protect Yourself and Your Belongings

Aqua recently learned of an incident involving a man identifying himself as a water company employee to gain access into a customer’s home and steal their belongings. Aqua would like to use this unfortunate event as an opportunity to remind our customers about this issue so you’re more aware in the future.


Imagine it’s the early morning and you’re home alone. A man outside identifies himself as a water company employee. He says there are leaks in your area, and he’s checking the homes on your street and needs to check your meter and the inside pipes. Once inside, he asks you to run water in the util­ity sink as he checks the upstairs bathroom sink. While upstairs, he steals jewelry and money left on a dresser.


In most cases, the only time Aqua would need to be inside your home is to service or exchange a meter or to respond to a problem about which you called us. In the former case, Aqua would contact you by mail or phone to schedule an appointment first.


There are a few exceptions when you might receive an unannounced visit from Aqua:


  • An employee might come to your door to make you aware of an unscheduled service outage, such as a main break. In this case, the employee would not need to access the inside of your home. An Aqua employee might also make an unannounced visit to investigate a property that has had multiple “zero usage” bills or an account that has not had a meter read for more than 45 days.
  • If a meter reader has trouble getting a remote meter read from outside your home, he might ask to enter you home to read the meter, in which case he would present a photo ID card.



For your safety and security, we encourage all customers to be extra cautious. Unfortunately, thieves like these might strike again. You can protect yourself by remembering the following information.

  1. All Aqua employees carry company identifica­tion. In all cases, please confirm the representative’s identification before letting them into your home.
  2. All employees dress in Aqua-branded attire similar to the uniform shown above.
  3. Company vehicles (mostly white Chevrolets) with the Aqua logo prominently displayed are always used.

If you encounter someone who is pretending to be an Aqua employee, please call your local police department and report them.

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