Bob Lembke and Mike Dino met each other when they served together on the Denver Regional Council of Governments board more than three decades ago.
Lembke was a member of the Greenwood City Council at the time, while Dino was Denver Mayor Wellington Webb’s senior adviser and his representative to what is pronounced as “Dr. Cog.” DRCOG is a planning organization for local governments.
The pair has had mutual interests over the years, mainly water. Lembke formed the United Water and Sanitation District in 1993, which helps Colorado’s farmers, municipalities and special districts meet their unique water supply challenges.
After working for Webb, Dino handled government affairs. Lembke was a client when they worked with Denver Water on an issue.
“Over the years, Bob has been very gracious to visit with my clients and share the benefit of his vast perspective on water resources,” Dino said. “It’s always easy to chat with him because of his friendliness and welcoming smile.
“He ’s certainly one of Colorado’s most important water veterans.”
The article noted Lembke’s relationship with Israel which, like Colorado, has water issues. On his ranch in Weld County, Lembke is experimenting with the same subsurface drip irrigation system that enabled parts of Negev Desert in Israel to support sizable successful farming operations.
Dino got the Villager article framed for Lembke, but then came coronavirus. Both men teleworked exclusively for a few months, and then sporadically began returning to their offices.
Waiting at Dino’s office at Squire Patton Boggs, where he works as a government affairs expert and advocate, was the framed article for Lembke still waiting to be delivered. That finally happened in late June through an intermediary.
Lembke was extremely touched, especially when he read a hand-written note Dino had attached to the back of the framed article:
“It is wonderful to see that you are recognized globally for being a visionary when it comes to water. I’ve enjoyed knowing you over the years.”