The official headquarters of the OAWP is in Tallahassee. Richard J. “Rich” Budell, who has served the OAWP since its inception, has seen the OAWP grow to a staff of 33 employees. The Tallahassee office is under the direct supervision of Mr. Budell with 15 professional and support staff with expertise in several disciplines including soil and water conservation, resource management, environmental regulation, biology, ecology, engineering, and geographic information systems. The Tallahassee team provides leadership and supervision for the regional field technical teams located around the state.
Recognizing the need to have a strong field presence for the delivery of services and programs to the agricultural community, Commissioner Adam Putnam has established six field teams. OAWP field staff is located in close proximity to key agricultural areas and, in many cases, are co-located with the regional Water Management Districts, which have primary responsibility for the management of water resources. The co-location of OAWP staff with the districts is financially efficient and serves to facilitate communication between the districts, the department, and the agricultural community. Currently, the OAWP employs 18 professional field staff located throughout the state. Specific field staff office locations include Marianna, Live Oak, Palatka, Tampa, Apopka, Sarasota, West Palm Beach, and Okeechobee. Growers are encouraged to take advantage of services and programs provided by the OAWP in their area.