About Making Connections

We connect places, smart devices and systems through high-powered channels that are dedicated to utility data. More than that, we help connect people. We bring public service providers closer to the customers they serve, and we strengthen the ties that bind citizens into communities.

Making Connections is a place where forward-looking utilities find relevant, informative ideas and stories. If the posts found here spark a thought-provoking conversation – well, we consider it time well spent.

Don’t forget to subscribe to the categories that interest you the most. We’ll email you with the latest content so you can access it anytime, anywhere!


Sensus, a Xylem brand, provides remotely-managed products and solutions that deliver the right data at the right time for investor-owned utilities, cooperatives and municipalities. As part of Xylem’s digital portfolio, our smart devices connect with a variety of communication technologies to help customers make timely decisions that optimize electric, gas and water systems. Learn more at sensus.com.


Xylem (XYL) is a leading global water technology company committed to solving critical water and infrastructure challenges with innovation. Our 17,000 diverse employees delivered revenue of $5.2 billion in 2021. We are creating a more sustainable world by enabling our customers to optimize water and resource management, and helping communities in more than 150 countries become water-secure. Join us at www.xylem.com.

Other Xylem-brand Blogs

Our Authors

Gray Anderson

Gray Anderson is the Product Manager for Energy Solutions at Sensus, a Xylem brand. Gray holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from North Carolina State University. He is passionate about identifying needs/pain points and driving software solutions to improve operational efficiency and safety. Before joining Xylem, Gray led the Product and Project Management teams for the Permitting and Safety applications at Prometheus Group, serving mainly oil and gas customers.

Chris Atkins

Chris Atkins is with the Global Energy Solutions & Services team. He’s been with Sensus for over 11 years and loves delivering innovative ways for utilities to operate more efficiently and safer.

Zachary Barkjohn

Zachary Barkjohn is a Product Manager at Sensus focusing on software and solutions for utilities. Zac holds Civil Engineering degrees from both NC State University and the University of Illinois and is a licensed Professional Engineer in the state of North Carolina.

Carolina Berg

Carolina has over 12 years of experience in the event world and is currently the Senior Event Manager at Sensus, a Xylem Brand. In her role, she oversees all strategy, planning, and logistics for all their tradeshows and user conferences.

Matthew Besch

Matt is the former North America Energy Vertical Marketing Manager at Sensus. Matt holds an M.Ed in Sports Administration from Wichita State University and undergraduate degrees in Public Relations and Print Journalism from Kansas State University.

Dr. Christine Boyle

Dr. Christine Boyle is Solution Area Lead for Xylem’s Metering Insights group. Her work focuses on developing decision support software that achieves both resource and financial sustainability goals for water utilities. She received a doctorate in water resource planning in 2011 and “spun” a water analytics company, Valor Water, out of her thesis work at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a trustee of the Cal-Nevada American Water Works Association and board member of AWWA.

Amanda Carte

Amanda joined Sensus three years ago as the company’s first Field Marketing Manager. She now serves as the Gas Sales Director for the Atlantic Region. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Marketing and Minor in Communications Studies from West Virginia University.

Ryan Chatel

Ryan Chatel is the Sr. Product Manager for Distribution Automation. Ryan holds two Bachelor’s degrees in Business Economics and Software Engineering from University of California, Santa Barbara and University of Phoenix respectively. Ryan also holds an MBA from Boise State University.

Albert Cho

Albert Cho is Vice President and General Manager at Xylem. In this role, he is responsible for the company’s newest business, which focuses on intelligent infrastructure diagnostics and decision support services across water, wastewater and energy infrastructure.

Chelsea Collier

Chelsea convenes people across sectors to focus on how technology can be applied to civic and social challenges. She serves as the Editor-at-Large for Smart Cities Connect which provides meaningful content and connects a community of decision-makers to empower smart cities at all stages of growth. She is also the Founder of Digi.City, an online platform that advocates for human-centric approaches to smart city solutions.

Brian Crow

Brian Crow is Vice President and Chief Software Officer at Xylem. He leads the organization’s big data and data science strategies and is responsible for Sensus software development execution, Software as a Service applications and software integration across Xylem.

Julia Doyle

Julia is a Product Manager for Gas Solutions at Sensus. She holds a Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science Degree from Duke University.

Joseph Dryer

Joseph Dryer is a Smart Water Engineer in the Water Product Management group at Sensus. Joseph has a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a Master of Science in Civil Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.

Katie Duggan

Katie Duggan is a member of Xylem’s Engineering Leadership Development Program (ELDP). With a B.S. and M.S. in Industrial and Operations Engineering from the University of Michigan, she has a passion for data-driven problem-solving.

Estelle Feider-Blazer

Estelle Feider-Blazer is a Global Product Development Manager focused on energy innovation for Xylem’s Measurement & Control Solutions business. Prior to her current role, she has worked as a Data Scientist as well as a Market and Strategy Analyst for Xylem.

Lindsey Frazier

Lindsey is a Technical Communicator with 10 years of experience directing documentation processes for science and technology organizations. She enjoys engaging in both formal and informal learning experiences, which have included a B.S in Chemistry, a M.S. in Technical Communication, and a professional certification in Agile Marketing.

François Frigaux

Francois Frigaux is the Regional Director for Middle East at Sensus, a Xylem brand. He joined Sensus in February 2008 as a General Manager of Morocco and Regional Sales Director North Africa.

Tom Galuska

Tom Galuska is Senior Product Manager for Water AMR/AMI for Sensus. He is responsible for new product initiatives and legacy product support for water communication products.

Sandy Garcia

Sandy Garcia is Vice President, Solutions Management at Sensus, a Xylem brand. Prior to joining Xylem, Sandy was director, special projects at Nicor Gas. She received an MBA from Aurora University, and a BS in Accounting and Business Information Systems from Illinois State University.

Natalie Gominger

Natalie joined the company in 2013 and currently works as Associate General Counsel on the legal team. The best part of her job is the opportunity to engage with employee resource groups to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion to help make Xylem a great place to bring your authentic self to work.

Jared Gregory

Jared Gregory is the former Senior Manager of Electric Metrology Products at Sensus. He holds a B.S. and M.S degree in electrical engineering and currently resides in Raleigh, NC with his wife and two daughters.

George Hawkins

George Hawkins launched his leadership and innovation-focused consulting business Moonshot LLC after stepping down as CEO and General Manager of DC Water, where he served for eleven years, including several as a Board member. During his tenure, he became well known for transforming DC Water into an innovative, customer-driven enterprise, while tripling its investment in clean water.

Mitchell Hensley

Mitchell Hensley is the former vice president of software strategy & architecture for Xylem, Inc. Mitchell has over 15 years’ experience in the utility industry working closely with water, electric and gas utilities across the US on the implementation and support of AMI & AMR projects.

Paul Honchar

Paul Honchar is Senior Product Manager for Sensus, a Xylem brand. Paul holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Pittsburgh, and has 39+ years of gas industry experience with Sensus and the predecessor companies.

Kagan Ilter

Kagan Ilter is a Senior Data Scientist at Xylem Data Lake and Data Science. Kagan holds a bachelor’s degree in Electronics and Control Systems Engineering and a master’s degree in International Studies and Security Analysis. Kagan held positions in Data Analysis, Operations Research and Electronics Engineering prior to his data science career. In his current role as a Data Scientist, he enjoys solving challenging data-related problems and delivering valuable insights.

Sara Jones

Sara Jones is the Marketing Communications Manager for Sensus Smart Water strategy. She holds a B.S. degree with a major in Political Science and a minor in United States Legal Systems from the State University of New York at Potsdam.

Michael Logue, Sensus

Michael Logue

Michael is the Director of Technical Content in Sensus’ Proposal group where he helps utilities find the right solution for their AMI needs.

Mike McGann

Mike McGann is Vice President of Sensus Americas, Global Engineering and Assessment Services at Xylem. He leads teams solving tomorrow’s biggest challenges for water, gas and electric utilities, today.

Vernadine Merrick

Vernadine Merrick is the Water Vertical Marketing Manager for Sensus/Xylem North America, focused on developing growth strategies through intelligence & VOC, sales enablement and strengthening industry relations.

Dr. Luis Montestruque

Luis Montestruque

Dr. Luis Montestruque is the President and CTO of EmNet, a Xylem brand. Luis has a Ph.D. degree in control systems theory from the electrical engineering department at the University of Notre Dame. He founded EmNet in 2004 to focus on the application of Internet of Things, Big Data, and Artificial Intelligence to optimize wastewater networks. In 2016, EmNet joined Xylem’s Advanced Infrastructure Analytic business to accelerate the adoption of data driven technologies by utilities across the globe.

Anne Mushow

Anne is the former Vice President of Delivery and Operations for Xylem Vue. Her favorite part of her role as a Xylem leader was the opportunity it gave her to mentor women early in their careers.

Brandon ODaniel

Brandon O'Daniel

Brandon O’Daniel is the Director of the Data Lake and Data Science teams for Sensus/Xylem. He has more than two decades of experience working in various Enterprise IT roles. Brandon holds a B.S. in Applied Science from UNC-Chapel Hill, an M.B.A from NC State University. When Brandon is not getting his hands dirty with data, he loves hanging out with his wife, three kids, dog and 4 chickens at home tucked in the woods near the Haw River in central NC.

Renée Peet

Renée Peet is a poetry and science-inspired MBA with a penchant for brand. She leads marketing and product management for Sensus. In this role, she connects utilities and cities to technology that empowers them to be more efficient, safe and sustainable.

Kristen Perry

Kristen Perry is the Customer Experience & Insights Marketing Manager at Sensus.. She is passionate about creating the best customer experiences for the Xylem community and thrives on making and strengthening customer-to-brand connections. She loves a good dose of healthy sarcasm, belly laughs, Disney, strong coffee and fall.

Megan Prangley

Megan Prangley is a demand generation manager focused on energy solutions for Sensus, a Xylem brand. Before coming to Sensus, she worked in marketing for various industries such as investor-owned utilities, healthcare, SAAS, and more. She has a B.A. in Communications from Grand Valley State University.

Michele Reister

Michele Reister

Michele Reister is the former Marketing Communications Manager for Sensus software, services, security and communication networks. Michele holds a B.S. in Management and Information Technology from Daniel Webster College and a M.B.A. from University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

Zack Riesland

Zack Riesland

Zack is the former principal data engineer for the Xylem Data Lake team. He enjoys being the father of four young kids, and will take any excuse to run/hike/bike through the mountains or the woods.

Colin Sabol

Colin Sabol is Senior Vice President and President of Xylem’s Measurement & Control Solutions (M&CS) business and leads all aspects of global operations. In this role, Colin rallies teams to create and deliver innovative technology that solves tomorrow’s global challenges - today.

Travis Smith

Travis Smith is the former Director of Strategic Sales Initiatives for Sensus. He is a Trustee of the AWWA Distribution and Plant Operations Division and has over 20 years of experience in the water industry. Travis holds an engineering degree from North Carolina State University.

David Stair

David is a Senior Director for the North American Energy group at Sensus. With over 30 years in the utility industry, including 17 years at a large combination municipal utility, David brings a wealth of knowledge to the table. He holds a degree in education and attended Calhoun College and Faulkner University. David is an avid football and basketball fan, spending 15 years coaching AAU basketball and youth football.

Andrew Swirsky

Andrew Swirsky is the US-Southeast manager for the Decision Intelligence Solutions team at Xylem. Andrew is a licensed Professional Engineer in multiple states and has been solving water distribution problems for water utilities for over a decade.

Chris Thomson

Chris Thomson is the Director of Strategic Initiatives for Sensus, a Xylem brand. He has over 21 years in the water and wastewater industry – with progressive experience in consulting, design, and solutions across the water cycle. Chris has a Master’s Degree of Science in Environmental Engineering from Johns Hopkins University. Chris is a registered Professional Engineer in North Carolina and Maryland.

Steve Toteda

Steve Toteda is the former Vice President of Global Marketing and Technology for Xylem’s Measurement and Control Solutions Division.

Vincent Toups

Vincent Toups

Vincent Toups is a PhD Neuro/Physicist turned Data Scientist/Engineer interested in traceable, reliable data science, the foundations and history of physics, programming languages and game design. He is also a dad and an assistant beekeeper.

Mike Tschirret

Michael Tschirret

Michael Tschirret is the former Sensus Marketing Communications Manager for Smart Cities, Smart Lighting and the Internet of Things (IoT). He holds a B.S. degree from the Florida State University, and an M.S. from Virginia Tech.

Ericka Wilcher

Ericka is a career marketer specializing in B2B technology. When not devising killer marketing programs to support the gas industry vertical at Sensus, she is a wife, the mother of twin daughters, and a perpetual seeker of home improvements.