Invaluable water connections

By Dean Amhaus, President & CEO

When The Water Council held member focus groups earlier this year, we heard again and again the considerable value of our matchmaking services.

It’s not a surprise. We know that our connections – to members, domestic and international partners, investors, thought leaders and more – is what makes us a world water hub.

We often reference our commitment to our members to convene, connect and showcase. It’s nearly impossible to measure the value of that kind of access, but we are trying to describe the benefits more fully in a new matchmaking page on our website. This page will continue to expand as we talk to more of our members and partners. If you have a matchmaking success to share, please contact Laura Mullen, our member engagement manager.

Speaking of partnerships, The Water Council has recently had a full slate of speaking engagements at the Marquette Sustainability 2.0 Conference, Wisconsin Technology Council Early Stage Symposium, International Bottled Water Association Conference and more. We also hosted visits from the Marshall Memorial Fellowship Program, young professionals from the Wisconsin and Illinois sections of the American Water Works Association, and several overseas water technology companies.

Earlier this month, we announced a new partnership with KPMG, one of the world’s largest professional services firms, to promote ESG (environmental, social and governance principles), water stewardship and our WAVE: Water Stewardship Verified program.

And I can’t talk about partnerships without mentioning the one we announced earlier this year with the U.S. Army Reserve to recruit water industry professionals to help bolster worldwide water security. TriplePundit recently published a column I wrote about why this partnership and all our water work is critical to national security.

innovation update

It’s BREW time! Applications are now open for the 2023 cohort of our BREW 2.0 Post-Accelerator. BREW 2.0, sponsored by Beckhoff Automation and Thales Water Advisors, is a next-stage post-accelerator created to help young companies build connections and grow their company’s capacity. The content focuses on expert-led sales and growth training tailored for water tech businesses.

The 2023 accelerator will include two weeks of virtual training and a week of in-person training in Milwaukee, culminating in an in-person Pitch/Investor Day. Click here to learn more.

We recently closed our fall Tech Challenge with entries from seven countries. Next, sponsors A. O. Smith Corporation, Badger Meter and Watts Water Technologies will choose the finalists to present their innovations to the sponsors.

We often hear that our innovation programming makes a significant impact for young companies. One example is Fixed Earth Innovations, which won our fall 2019 Tech Challenge for its PFAS remediation solution. We caught up with Fixed Earth in our latest “Where Are They Now?” blog entry.

“The number of doors (Tech Challenge) opened was immeasurable. Winning the Tech Challenge helped validate our technology and placed us directly into networks that we otherwise would likely have taken years to penetrate.”
-Daniel Lanman, Fixed Earth executive vice president

Water stewardship

If you’ve paid attention to the news lately, you know water has become a hot topic. But too often attention is focused solely on the West Coast, when water risks are spread throughout the country. Our vice president of water stewardship, Matt Howard, recently collaborated with Morningstar Sustainalytics on a report about water risk in the Great Plains, particularly as it concerns the packaged food industry. Check it out.

Interest in our WAVE: Water Stewardship Verified program is growing rapidly. In October we announced our first participant from the world of higher education, Marquette University.  We are working with several other interested organizations and expect to make more announcements soon.

If you’re interested in learning more about WAVE, contact Matt Howard. Looking for a deep dive into water stewardship? Sign up for our virtual Comprehensive Water Stewardship Training happening Dec. 7-9. Members of The Water Council receive 25% off registration.

new members

This month we welcome new member MicroSynergies, based in Glendale, Wisconsin. Welcome to the hub where water works!

Our Water Champion membership option, for companies of any industry looking to support our efforts in freshwater innovation and water stewardship, has been quite successful in its first year, with more than 20 members enrolled. We are always looking for new potential members, so please contact us if you know of any companies that would be a good fit.

member news & opportunities