Imagine H2O Receives Leadership Award for Water Technology Innovation

Great Lakes Protection Fund Lauds Pioneering Efforts to Improve Water Quality

SAN FRANCISCO (May 20,2019) – IMAGINE H2O received a 2019 Great Lakes Leadership Award for Water Technology Innovation. The Great Lakes Protection Fund today named six organizations from the U.S. and Canada as recipients of the award, which highlights water technology innovation that addresses current threats and anticipates future threats to water quality in the Great Lakes. In announcing the award, the Fund praised Imagine H2O for its success in creating a path to market for entrepreneurs solving water resource challenges facing the Great Lakes Basin and beyond.

“Recognition from one of the nation’s top water philanthropies is an important validation of our Accelerator model and reach,” explained Imagine H2O’s President Scott Bryan. “We applaud philanthropic organizations such as the Fund which recognize the need to advance entrepreneurial solutions to water challenges.”

The Fund—an innovation endowment established by the Great Lakes governors—created the Leadership Awards to celebrate efforts that accelerate new actions for protecting and improving the Great Lakes and have the potential to improve water quality on a global scale. Winners were selected for their entrepreneurial spirit and ability to bring an influx of creative ideas, citizen involvement, private capital, and collaboration to benefit the Great Lakes.


“No one is better at serving the needs of the entire water innovation ecosystem than Imagine H2O. The organization works with entrepreneurs, investors, the public sector, corporate leaders, and philanthropy, truly making the whole bigger than the sum of the parts,” said David Rankin in announcing Imagine H2O as a recipient of the Great Lakes Leadership Award for Water Technology Innovation. “As Imagine H2O celebrates its 10th year of programming, we wish to acknowledge the entire team for their work on Great Lakes issues and with Great Lakes-based innovators to build the future of water.”

Imagine H2O startups located in the Great Lakes region are tackling issues including heavy metals testing and compliance, industrial wastewater treatment, groundwater management, and software solutions for utility managers.  These startups include EMAGIN and WatrHub (Ontario), BioGill, Wellntel, and PaveDrain (Wisconsin), Water Warriors (Ohio), and ANDalyze (Illinois).  The organization’s 2019 Accelerator recently honored Indiana-based 120WaterAudit for its utility software and logistics solution for communities responding to water contamination issues.

120WaterAudit’s  team at Imagine H2O’s 2019 Water Innovation Week

120WaterAudit’s team at Imagine H2O’s 2019 Water Innovation Week

“Globally, Imagine H2O sees concentrations of entrepreneurial ideas in regions where there is a combination of water resource challenges, academic centers of excellence, and cross-sector willingness to support and deploy innovations; the Great Lakes fits this profile,” explained Mr. Bryan.  “Not only are we proud of our entrepreneurs in the region, we value our relationships with Great Lakes-based investors, customers, and public agencies.” 

The Award recognition provides Imagine H2O with a general support grant to advance its efforts to deploy innovation in the region. The Great Lakes Protection Fund plans to work with Imagine H2O to help identify communities and issues facing the region’s cities as part its 2019 Urban Water Challenge, a global program supporting deployments in major urban markets.

For more information about the Great Lakes Leadership Awards for Water Technology Innovation and 2019 winners, please visit

About Imagine H2O:

Imagine H2O is a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering people to deploy and develop innovation to solve water challenges globally. The organization’s water innovation accelerator provides entrepreneurs with the resources, insight and visibility to launch and scale water solutions. By partnering with industry and policy experts and a global network of customers and investors, Imagine H2O has become a proven path to market for emerging water technology businesses. Since 2009, the organization’s program alumni have collectively raised more than 1 in every 10 dollars of venture capital in the water industry.