Tabatha James, winner of Victorian Young Operator of the Year 2018

Tabatha James


Tabatha James

  • Water Supply Operator – Silvan
  • Joined Melbourne Water in 2016

Presented annually to operators of water or wastewater treatment facilities, the Victorian Young Operator of the Year award recognises excellent performance, initiative and all round attention to detail in water operations.   

Each year, nominations are sought from Water Authorities and water companies throughout Victoria. In recognition of her amazing commitment to learning all she can about water industry management and incredible 'can do' attitude, Tab was nominated by Melbourne Water as a very worthy nominee for Young Operator of the Year.

Since joining the Water Supply Team in 2016, Tab quickly progressed from Trainee to a qualified Operator and is often sought after by fellow team members for her knowledge and support. Not satisfied with just doing her job, Tab has demonstrated a strong commitment to improving the systems and procedures her team rely on as part of their daily routine activities.

Her passion for Occupational Health and Safety has also led her to implement numerous safety initiatives providing major improvements to the safety of key tasks conducted by her and her team.  With a background in conservation and land management, Tab has also demonstrated a strong commitment to improvement of land management and sustainability initiatives that impact on the assets she manages.
Tab epitomises Melbourne Water's core values of "Care, Integrity and Courage".

But…it's tough competition! All applications received are judged by the Australian Water Association (AWA) with the winner announced at the Victorian Water Industry Operations of Australia (WIOA) Conference Awards Dinner in Bendigo on 6 September.  

When hearing her name announced as the winner, Tab was both shocked and excited. "Up on stage I was still a bit jittery with nerves after hearing my name announced as the winner for the award. Walking some distance from my table positioned right at the back of hall I tried to collect my thoughts and settle the nerves.

When she left her table, Tab "felt elated at the flurry of support and excitement from my fellow Melbourne Water Colleagues and representatives from other water authorities. It was a pretty amazing experience."  In her acceptance speech, Tab said "I really wanted to communicate my thanks to those that took a chance with me, to those that mentored and coached me in the 'Ways of a Water Supply Operator' particularly early on in my training, The award is just as much a testament to them."   


Last updated:
16 July 2020