Heavy Highway All Stars: Cynthia Nelson-Walters

Cynthia Nelson-Walters, CCIFP, Management Professional – Great Lakes Water Authority (Detroit, MI). 

The Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA) currently provides nearly 40% of Michigan’s population with water, as well as effective and efficient wastewater services to nearly 30% of the state. GLWA is all about the movement of water from the environment, to its customers, and back to the environment, ensuring their member partner communities get the highest quality water using treatment standards that are stricter than state or federal regulatory requirements. GLWA spends, on average, $500 million dollars per year on construction services.

Cindy has over thirty years of experience working as a construction industry financial professional in Michigan’s commercial construction industry, with a focus on financial statement preparation, WIP schedules, and other reporting functions. Over her career, Cindy has held the role of controller for a masonry company, and two heavy/highway contractors. In these roles, Cindy also acted as the risk manager, contract administrator, and compliance specialist. Cindy has a Michigan Residential Builders License, which she has been able to leverage in her personal life with real estate investment holdings.

Cindy has been a member of CFMA since 2010. She is an active member of the Heavy Highway Committee at the National level of CFMA and an Officer on the Board of Directors for the Metro Detroit Chapter. Cindy is the current Vice Chair of the Heavy/Highway Committee and continues to be very active today. Cindy is always one of the first to volunteer and has led many Dawn Peer discussion groups at CFMA’s Annual Conference & Exhibition. Per Doug Smith, current Chairman of the Heavy/Highway Committee, “Cindy’s contributions over the years have been invaluable and she has been an exemplary member, leading by example, and always willing to jump in and drive any initiative she is asked to undertake.”

One of Cindy’s most significant accomplishments within the CFMA community was being part of the team that helped bring the Metro Detroit Chapter back from the brink of dissolution. The chapter was very close to being disbanded and many of the members had left and created a different construction organization. Through Cindy’s leadership and the efforts of the Detroit Chapter team, this group was able to help the chapter rebound and become the thriving chapter they are today, with over 60 members and a healthy financial position. The Metro Detroit Chapter continues to expand the benefits provided to its members and is well positioned for growth in the coming years.

The Talking Heavy task force invites you to submit other Heavy Highway All Stars. Every day we work with outstanding individuals who continue to impress and amaze us through their leadership and new initiatives. Many of these folks are new to the Heavy Highway sector, whether they are just starting their careers in construction or have worked in other industries. If you work with or know of any leaders in the making or individuals that you would like to profile due to some great new initiative, please contact us so we can shine a spotlight on them. Let’s all celebrate the great talent within the Heavy Highway community and recognize our rising stars. Please send your recommendations to Dave Flynn at dflynn@b2wsoftware.com

About the Author

David Flynn, CPA

David Flynn, CPA, is the CFO of B2W Software located in Portsmouth, NH.

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