Former assistant city manager named interim director of Austin Water

Former Assistant City Manager Robert Goode will begin an interim term as Austin Water's director April 11. (Courtesy city of Austin)
Former Assistant City Manager Robert Goode will begin an interim term as Austin Water's director April 11. (Courtesy city of Austin)

Former Assistant City Manager Robert Goode will begin an interim term as Austin Water's director April 11. (Courtesy city of Austin)

Robert Goode, a former assistant city manager with infrastructure planning experience, will take the helm of Austin Water next month following the departure of the utility's longtime director, Greg Meszaros.

Meszaros tendered his resignation last month after operational failure at Austin Water led to a citywide boil-water notice and left residents and businesses without reliable drinking water over the course of four days in early February. The incident was the third sweeping boil notice during Meszaros' 15-year tenure at Austin Water and the first linked directly to human error; the previous two stemmed from historic flooding in 2018 and Winter Storm Uri in 2021.

Meszaros remains at the utility in the wake of the breakdown to assist with its leadership transition and has appeared before City Council for several hearings about the February situation and the utility's operations. In his February resignation letter, Meszaros credited the utility's work and thanked city leadership for support throughout his time as director.

"I have embraced the job, and I believe I have demonstrated strong leadership and an exemplary work ethic. The job does take a toll, though, and part of being a courageous leader is knowing when it is time to allow others with new energy and insight to come forward. I take full responsibility for any shortcomings at the utility this past week," Meszaros wrote Feb. 11.

Austin Water's own investigation of the boil notice situation remains in progress. It will be followed by an external audit commissioned by council that could cost between $200,000 and $1 million.


Meszaros is expected to formally step away from Austin Water on April 8, and Goode will begin his term as interim director April 11. In a statement, City Manager Spencer Cronk also said a broader search for the utility's next director will be underway soon.

“Please join me in welcoming Mr. Goode back to the city of Austin in his new interim role,” Cronk said. “I will be initiating a national recruitment process to select the permanent Austin Water director. I also want to thank Greg Meszaros for his many years of service and leadership. He led Austin Water with honor and distinction and will be deeply missed.”

Goode returns to Austin with 10 years of experience as assistant city manager overseeing infrastructure including Austin Water. He previously worked at the civil engineering firm Lockwood, Andrews, and Newnam, and in various infrastructure planning roles with Travis County; Fort Worth; Olympia, Washington; and the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority.
By Ben Thompson

Austin City Hall Reporter

Ben joined Community Impact Newspaper in January 2019 after graduating with a degree in journalism from Northeastern University in Boston. He spent more than two years reporting on Montgomery County and The Woodlands area before moving to Austin in 2021 to cover City Hall and other news throughout the city. Contact Ben with questions, tips or feedback at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @BThompson_CI.