Author Archives: John O'Connor

About John O'Connor

Dr. John T. O’Connor, PE Dr. John O’Connor is one of the world’s most widely published researchers in the field of drinking water quality and treatment. He has conducted pioneering studies of the removal of arsenic, mercury, virus and disinfection by-products from water supplies. He has been recognized by his peers for his studies of microbially-mediated corrosion and water quality deterioration in water distribution systems. He was among the first to apply advanced epifluorescent microscopic techniques to the direct enumeration of microorganisms in treated drinking water. Dr. O’Connor earned a doctorate in Sanitary Engineering and Water Resources from The Johns Hopkins University and is a registered professional civil engineer in Illinois and Missouri. He was Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign from 1961-1975 and was subsequently appointed Chair and C.W. LaPierre Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Missouri-Columbia, a position he held from 1975- 1992. He served as Chief of the Illinois State Water Survey, Champaign, Illinois from 1992 to 1995. Starting in 1993, Dr. O’Connor established H2O'C Engineering, a Columbia, Missouri- based consulting firm specializing in water and wastewater engineering. Today, his firm provides engineering services to numerous Midwestern municipal utilities. Dr. O’Connor is an ASCE Fellow and recipient of the ASCE Simon Freese Award and Lecture. A Fulbright Award recipient, he has served as Chair of the Fulbright Awards Committee for Australasia. Dr. O’Connor is recipient of the 2002 and 2009 American Water Works Association (AWWA) Warren Kramer Awards, an Honorary Member of the Missouri Water and Wastewater Conference, and Life Member of the American Chemical Society, Water Environment Federation and AWWA. Dr. O’Connor contributed two chapters to the 2002 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Manual on Control of Microorganisms in Drinking Water. In 2009, based on his drinking water treatment consulting experiences, his book on Water Treatment Plant Performance Evaluations and Operations was published by John Wiley and Sons. A comprehensive listing of his publications, as well as downloadable pdfs of recent reports, can be accessed at


how-the-oconnorvirus-calmed-first-america-then-the-world. Continue reading

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a-family-learns-to-care-for-itself-during-a-pandemic. Continue reading

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Season’s Greetings, 1966-2020.pdf

The Journey of an American Familyʼs Life
as told through Christmas Letters, 1966-2020
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2020: A Year of Learning

a-review-of-what-was-learned-during-the-pandemic-year 2020. Continue reading

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After Heart Surgery

After Heart Surgery Some thoughts following receiving a part from a cow.

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Bronx to Hell’s Kitchen

Bronx to Hell’s Kitchen Reminiscences of Life in New York City, 1933-1955.

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Letters to Heather

LetterstoHeather This collection is a series of whimsical letters to my daughter, Heather, who shares my concerns about inexorable population growth and the progressive depletion of the earth’s natural resources.

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The Value of Life

Have you ever wondered what value government agencies place on your life? You may be flattered to learn that up to now, as an average U.S. citizen, you have generally been considered pretty valuable. That may be changing. 1. Animals  2. … Continue reading

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Thank you, USEPA!

Thank you, USEPA

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