Arthur von Weisenberg

Arthur von Wiesenberger
Moderator and Water Master The International Water Tasting & Competition
Noted water expert and consultant

Well known for Nipper’s, his highly successful champagne and caviar club in California, von Wiesenberger added water tastings to his wine tasting business in the late 1970s. He is a past president of the International Food, Wine and Travel Writers Association, the American Institute of Wine and Food and the Society of Wine Educators.  His books include Champagne & Caviar, A Pocket Guide to Bottled Water and The Taste of Water.  The original Water Master of the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting, von Wiesenberger has served in all but three festivals through the 25 years.  Among his consulting clients are Anheiser-Busch and Perrier.


At the Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting in Feb. there were global experts on water, and ones familiar with WV American in Charleston. They spoke at our seminar along with a panel that included an award-winning water provider in Delaware and WV Rivers Coalition. The seminar was rearranged to address the issue of the spill in Charleston. Here are links to both talks. TBS VP, Jeanne Mozier, personally presented a CD of these two talks to WV Senator Joe Manchin and Congresswoman Shelley Capito along with summary comments..;



TOPIC:Drinking Water 101, Facts to Ponder before Banning Bottled Water.

What insights colleges and municipalities left out of their decisions to ban bottled water sales. 

Jack C. West   --Chairman, Drinking Water Research Foundation
2015 Lifetime Achievement Award – Berkeley Springs International Water Tasting

West has served the bottled water and drinking water industries for more than three decades. Among his many contributions to the bottled water industry and the International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) was his participation in the development of the IBWA Model Code. He has been an industry representative to Codex Alimentarius, the food standards body of the World Health Organization and the Food and Agricultural Organization, and is the president and founder of Puro Water Group. A past chairman of IBWA, West continues to serve on a number of its committees and task groups.

TOPIC: Water and Power: How the Force of Water Transforms Our Psyche

Examine water’s unexpected and promising outcomes by exploring three unique locations and events: Tern Island/Hawaii; The St. Francis Dam Disaster; and Hinkley -- the story behind the movie Erin Brockovich

Michael Cervin Senior Editor at BottledWaterWeb the premier industry website devoted to water and the bottled water industry, Cervin is the author of several books including the forthcoming, "Our World of Water: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of Our Most Critical Resource."  He is a regular contributor to Forbes, The Hollywood Reporter, Wine Enthusiast, Fine Wine & Liquor (the largest wine magazine in China), the Santa Barbara News-Press, The Tasting Panel, and many other publications.  Cervin is a popular judge at food and beverage events including the Best of Vinho Verde Awards in Portugal, the Taste of Rum Festival in Puerto Rico, and wine competitions throughout California. You can view his work at



The Alan A. Leff Memorial Lecture Fund was established by the Drinking Water Research Foundation to honor the memory of Alan Leff and his career in the bottled water industry supporting water associations and research around the world. Lectures will focus on issues of water safety, challenges and risks. The Berkeley Spring International Water Tasting is honored to have its 25th annual seminar chosen as the site for launching this lecture series.




TOPIC:Prescription Medications and Long Island's Aquifers

How the pilot Operation Big Red Box project aids the general public in responsibly disposing of their unwanted medications in pharmaceutical collection receptacles rather than flushing them into the groundwater.


Thomas McAbee A retired banker, McAbee is Founder and Executive Director of the non profit Lloyd Magothy Water Trust, Inc. which has the primary mission of keeping medications from drinking water sources. He plans to expand Operation Big Red Box throughout New York State and, eventually the United States. Author of a soon to be released article in the March issue of the national trade publication, Inside Pharmacy.

TOPIC:How response to the 2014 West Virginia water crisis led to new protections of drinking water sources.

Last year, a leaky chemical storage tank contaminated the drinking water of 300,000 thousand West Virginians across a nine-county area. A state of emergency was declared as thousands experienced health effects and businesses and schools closed for days. The "West Virginia Water Crisis", marked as the largest chemical drinking water contamination event in our nation's history, awakened the state and country to the vulnerability of our water supplies. This presentation will discuss lessons learned and reforms advanced in source water protection in response to the crisis.

Angie Rosser Executive Director of the West Virginia Rivers Coalition, Rosser has a professional background focusing on social justice issues in the non-profit sector. She earned degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and West Virginia University. Rosser lives on the banks of the Elk River and works toward a day when she can swim in its waters.

TOPIC:Implications of Climate Change on Water

A discussion of the future ownership of water resources, human migration and climate modeling associated with climate change.

Henry R. Hidell, III, Chairman & Managing Director, Consulting Services, Hidell InternationalFounder of Hidell International, Hidell is recognized as an expert in international economic and business development.   He has provided consulting services to the beverage, drinking water, food and nutrition industries since 1972 on everything from the formulation of business strategies, mergers and acquisitions to turnkey development of beverage bottling facilities.  Hidell has actively participated in the development of beverage industry organizations, trade groups and production facilities throughout the world. In 1995, his proposal to establish standards and regulate trade of mineralized water was adopted by the South American Free Trade Organization (MERCOSUR).

A member of the Executive Committee of the International Bottled Water Association (IBWA),  he is the Supplier Representative to the International Council of Bottled Water Associations, a member of the Council of International Experts of the Association Internationale de la Distribution, and a member of the International Society of Beverage Technologists. He was inducted into the Beverage World Magazine/International Bottled Water Association's Bottled Water Hall of Fame in 2001.

Hidell has an undergraduate degree in geology/hydrogeology from West Chester University and a Graduate degree in Land Use Planning and International Economic Development from Southern Illinois University.