Home > Organization

U.S. IBWC Organizational Structure

The U.S. Section is headed by Commissioner Maria-Elena Giner and is comprised of the Executive Offices of the Commissioner and four Departments: OperationsEngineering, Information Management and Administration. The Operations and Engineering Departments carry out and address the core mission of the U.S. Section. The Administration Department, under the direction of the Chief Administrative Officer, provides the support functions of the agency. The Executive Offices of the Commissioner includes the Office of the Legal Advisor, the Foreign Affairs Office (U.S. Section Secretary), the Washington DC Liaison Office, the Public Affairs and Human Resources Office. Like the Commissioner, the Heads of the Engineering and Operations Departments are engineers, who report directly to the Commissioner. The roles of the Executive Offices and Departments are summarized below.

The Office of Legal Advisor is the in-house counsel that provides all general legal services for the agency, including contracting, realty, employment, and environmental matters. It also provides legal guidance on bi-national issues, and interprets international law as part of the implementation of the Agency’s Foreign Policy Program. The Foreign Affairs Office is headed by the U.S. Section Secretary, who serves as an expert adviser on Treaty and Minute interpretations, and in cooperation with the Minute at the Department of State, serves as a policy adviser on international relations. The Foreign Affairs Office also provides language interpretation services, maintains all diplomatic communication records, and prepares the formal binational agreements called IBWC Minutes. The Public Affairs Office addresses public concerns and coordinates citizen’s forums to inform and update the public about current and potential U.S. Section projects, initiatives, and issues. This office also prepares press releases, publications, brochures, and newsletters as needed. The Equal Employment, Internal Audit, Strategic Planning, Occupational Safety and Health, and Security and Investigation Programs report directly to the Commissioner. The Equal Employment and Internal Audit Program Managers oversee agency policies and practices to ensure compliance with all respective laws, regulations, agency directives, and other requirements. The Strategic Planning Officer is responsible for development of the agency’s strategic plan, performance goals, annual performance plans and reports, and guides project planning efforts. The Occupational Safety and Health Program manager is responsible for the occupational safety and health of all U.S. Section employees. He develops the appropriate protocols and training requirements to ensures adherence of Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards and improve employee awareness of workplace safety. The Chief Security Officer is in charge of coordinating and instituting physical security measures at all U.S. Section installations, including at international dams, and conducting internal administrative investigations.

The Operations Department is headed by the Principal Engineer of Operations. The Principal Engineer of Operations provides technical and policy advice to the U.S. Commissioner, and oversees all U.S. Section operations and maintenance activities to assure adherence with treaty requirements. The Operations Department, through its eight field offices, operates and maintains roughly 100 hydrologic gaging stations, 500 miles of levees, 20,000 acres of floodplains, four diversion dams, two International storage dams and associated hydroelectric power plants, over 500 hydraulic structures, two International wastewater treatment plants, and one-half of all boundary monuments and markers on the land boundary and at ports of entry. It also administers and boundary and realty programs, and performs the water accounting functions to determine the national ownership of Rio Grande and Colorado River waters jointly with Mexican Section.

The Engineering Department is headed by the Principal Engineer of Engineering. Like the Principal Engineer of Operations, the Principal Engineer of Engineering also provides technical and policy advice to the U.S. Commissioner. The Engineering Department provides technical support for all USIWBC operations, and administers the engineering, environmental management, and geographic information system functions. The Engineering Department conducts and reviews environmental impact studies, water quality monitoring, hydraulic studies, geotechnical investigations, and develops design plans and specifications for construction and renovation of buildings, hydraulic and flood control structures, hydroelectric power plant infrastructure, and wastewater treatment plant infrastructure.

The Administration Department is headed by the Chief Administrative Officer. It provides administrative support to all agency functions through its four Divisions: AcquisitionsBudget and Financial ServicesInformation Management, and General Services (Property, Fleet Management, and Communications & Records). The Administration Department will lead the way to implement the President's Management Agenda with the following action plans: (1) identifying potential improvements to eliminate superfluous or overlapping responsibilities in agency programs; (2) instituting an organizational structure that allows for a well-coordinated and efficient organization that emphasizes public needs while meeting requirements and empowering employees; (3) developing a performance based budget process that evaluates the effectiveness of all activities to establish successful mission-oriented programs, determine funding requirements and identify efficiencies to eliminate mismanagement, waste, or duplication of efforts The Department is committed to helping its customers achieve desired results instead of placing impediments to progress. All this will be accomplished by placing utmost importance to achieving agency priorities, and the professional and personal development of each staff member.