Introducing Monica Pless, our new Event Coordinator

Monica_Pless_Headshot_11-30-14Introducing Monica Pless: The Water Council’s new Event Coordinator

If you stopped by The Water Council offices lately at the Global Water Center, then chances are you saw a couple of new faces amongst our staff; one of those new additions is Monica Pless. Monica joined The Water Council at the beginning of December as the new Event Coordinator. Wasting no time, she is already assisting with the planning of Water Summit 2015 and numerous other Water Council events. Feel free to swing by and say hello!

What drew you to The Water Council?

“When I discovered this event position at The Water Council, and learned more about their mission, I instantly had a feeling that this was the place for me! I had the opportunity to travel many parts of Europe, and from this experience I knew I would enjoy working for an international organization.”

Why? “I love Milwaukee and want to help make it a better place. Not to mention, event planning is my passion; so, being able to plan and host people from all over the world, further establishing The Water Council and Milwaukee as a world water hub, is just ideal. Plus, being a part of the expanding and thriving neighborhood of Walker’s Point is a great perk!”

What do you hope to accomplish in your new role?

“I’m new to the water industry, and I’m learning and understanding the amazing work that’s taking place here in Wisconsin, throughout the states, and around the world. I hope to grow in my knowledge of water issues and what our members are doing to make a global impact, foremost.”

“Additionally, I’m excited to plan events that showcase our members and their incredible work and assist with the expanding programming focused on business development for members. As the event coordinator, I plan events that bring in attendees from all walks of life- it’s my job to ensure that their experience is positive and beneficial. I thrive on this and look forward to meeting and working with The Water Council membership!”

Monica has a B.A. in Communicative Arts: Public Relations from Wisconsin Lutheran College with experience in organizing a range of events from monthly luncheons to annual formals. Prior to The Water Council, Monica was a Public Relations intern at Cramer-Krasselt and a Communications Assistant at Kingdom Workers and remains involved with Women for MACC. Monica’s passion for event planning, marketing and public relations make her a stellar addition to The Water Council team.

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Water Summit 2015

Summit_2015_savethedateRegistration opens in February – Stay tuned for exciting announcements!


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Guest Blogger Vicki Elkin on Fund for Lake Michigan

waveThe Fund for Lake Michigan, created through a legal settlement between environmental groups and three utilities, won two more years of funding last month to support efforts to improve water quality in Lake Michigan and its tributaries.  The Wisconsin Public Service Commission voted unanimously in November to allow the three utilities, including We Energies, to continue payments of $4 million a year through their rate base to the Fund for Lake Michigan.
The Fund, which is based at the Global Water Center, has supported more than 90 projects with grants totaling over $8.5 million since 2011. These grants have had a notable impact on economic growth and job creation, especially in the greater Milwaukee area.  According to a study by UW-Whitewater, the Fund’s grants have helped to create roughly 500 jobs and have added more than $35 million to the local economy.
The Public Service Commission’s decision was supported by more than 100 businesses, elected officials, non-profit organizations and community leaders, including The Water Council and many of its members.  The Commissioners were particularly impressed by the economic and environmental benefits that the Fund’s grants provide to ratepayers. 
The Fund will issue a call for proposals in January.  For more information, please contact the Fund’s Executive Director at 414-418-5008 or
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December 2014 Q4 Member Meeting Recap

Tuesday, December 2nd marked the 4th Quarterly Member Meeting of 2014! Thank you to UW-Milwaukee School of Freshwater Sciences for hosting us. It was a pleasure to see many new faces including welcoming two new Water Council staff, Monica Pless, Event Coordinator, and Ashley Janke, Communications Coordinator. For those who were unable to attend, here is a brief recap and a link to the presentation below.

IMG_3456Members were able to take a tour of the new School of Freshwater Sciences building, which opened on the one year anniversary of the Global Water Center, September 12, 2014.

Attendees viewed many areas of the building while tour guides highlighted labs, teaching facilities, manufacturing areas, and florescent filled hallways. Before concluding, the tour received a breath of fresh as they gazed upon their primary research vessel Neeskay.

Rich Meeusen, Chairman/President/CEO of Badger
Meter and Co-Chair of The Water Council, welcomed all guests before introducing UW-Milwaukee Interim Chancellor IMG_3514and Water Council Board Member, Mark Mone, who briefly touched on the unique, innovative qualities of the UW-Milwaukee School of Freshwater Sciences. Vicki Elkin, Fund for Lake Michigan and Joel Brennan, Discovery World, followed Mone to briefly discuss the Sea of Sustainability Lab under construction at Discovery World.

Featured Speaker: Mike Turillo, Founder & Chairman of inno360 Inc., introduced the latest version of the Water Collaborative Innovation Platform which first premiered at the 2014 Water Summit. The Platform is a web-based, search, innovation management and analytics tool. Through learning, connecting and sharing, this technology will create a trusted collaborative water ecosystem for industry and academic researchers.

WCIP_screenshot“Innovation is not what is created today. It is what is used today. Innovation is in the ‘eyes of the beholder’,” Turillo emphasized as he described how this platform will not only allow a space for the collaboration of new technology, but will allow a new way to find existing information and technology specifically in the water industry.

The Platform will place communities working in different arenas in proximity to each other, giving the members a way to understand massive amounts of content through statistics and infographics in order to organize thinking around innovative solutions.  In an era of a content saturated world, this is a platform to ‘make sense of it all’.

In 2015, Water Council Members will have access to the Water Collaborative Innovation Platform through a subscription based on their degree of membership.

BREWII_Q4The BREW (Business. Research. Entrepreneurship. In Wisconsin.) Accelerator: Elizabeth Thelen, Director of Entrepreneurship & Talent, and Brew II representatives shared and explained their startup missions and goals.  On an exciting note, Wellntel is officially launching! Also, WatrHub is looking for a research intern. Contact for more information.

Wetskills Challenge: Eric Doescher from UW-Whitewater’s Institute for Water Business spoke about their Wetskills Water Challenge. The challenge is looking for students to apply from Canada, the Netherlands, and the United States. 20 students will be accepted and sponsored to tackle contemporary water challenges of the world (for more information CLICK HERE).

EWOB_SlideEngineers without Borders: Jesse Nechodom and Marissa Jablenski from Engineers without Borders will be hosting their 7th Annual Benefit at the Global Water Center on February 20th, featuring a silent auction.

Proceeds will go to their current mission project designing and building water distribution systems for villages in the Lxill region of Guatemala.

Expanding Talent & Education Committee Programming: Committee Co-Chairs Joe Russell, President of Watertech of America and Heather Koehn, Marketing Manager at Pentair discussed the committee’s “K to Gray” initiative. Their goal is to make 100% of K-12 students aware of water business, freshwater problems and solutions and to inspire 1% of them to pursue a career in a water-related field.

To build awareness in the youth, they would like anyone involved in the water industry to volunteer 3-4 hours of their time to work with high school students through My Life My Plan. Volunteers will have a chance to meet with 2-4 students and give insights on current water issues. The next My Life My Plan date is December 12th and a February meet up is in the works.  For more information, contact Heather Koehn through the Pay it Forward Campaign, or at

IMG_3527Another initiative in the works is a partnership with Junior Achievement’s Biz Town, which will also be opening up a Water Storefront. 120 students access Biz Town per day and it is a great opportunity to expose students to the water industry, and opportunities that exist for them.

After the Members meeting closed out, many guests stuck around for a spread of cookies, coffee and conversation. Join us for our Q1 2015 meeting February 18th! If you are interested in hosting please contact Monica Pless, Event Coordinator, at

For the the PowerPoint Presentation CLICK HERE.

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Hiring: Accounting & Finance Manager at The Water Council – Apply by Dec. 19

Nametags_HorizontalCrop The Accounting & Finance Manager is responsible for handling all aspects of The Water Council’s financial record-keeping, including recording financial transactions, managing accounts payable and receivable, and assisting with completing annual tax forms.

Our work environment offers a casual, yet fast-paced atmosphere where multitasking is essential. The ideal candidate should be comfortable working both independently and in a team setting. They must efficiently allocate time for optimal performance and effectively handle multiple demands, priorities and deadlines with an eye for detail.

CLICK HERE for the complete position description.

Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree from a 4 year college and 5+ years of experience,

Applicants should submit cover letter and resume to by Friday, December 19. Please include the position title in the subject line of the email.

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Water Council commends Senate Committee on passage of the Nexus of Water & Energy Sustainability Act of 2014

MILWAUKEE, November 14 – The Water Council expresses continued support for S. 1971, the Nexus of Energy and Water for Sustainability Act of 2014, which was passed by the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources yesterday, November 13. This bipartisan bill, introduced by Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) and cosponsored by Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), will establish a federal interagency coordination committee with the leadership of the Department of Energy and the Department of the Interior, focused on the nexus between energy and water production, use, efficiency, and other purposes.

“This bipartisan legislation will streamline the federal government’s approach to energy-water issues and make it easier for the private sector to innovate.  I strongly support it because it will move our global leadership on water research forward and help fuel our Made in Wisconsin innovation economy,” said Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin, co-sponsor of S. 1971.

One of the objectives of The Water Council is fostering synergistic relationships with a focus on collaboration and partnerships that serve Milwaukee’s water technology cluster and provide solutions for global water challenges. Currently there is a lack of appreciation of the direct connection between water and energy; this water-energy nexus is complex and complicated, therefore, improving coordination between federal agencies on this topic is critical.

S. 1971 is an important step in addressing this issue, as it will enhance federal government information exchange, and eliminate the duplication of efforts by various federal agencies tackling these significant issues for our country, by promoting collaboration and partnerships.

“This legislation will help The Water Council and our water cluster network to efficiently navigate federal programs related to water-energy nexus issues,” said Dean Amhaus, president and CEO of The Water Council. “Creating this streamlined process encourages those businesses and academic institutions to identify and align our cluster resources with federal programming, and provide technological solutions for the water-energy nexus.”

The Water Council has benefitted from a similar approach since 2009, aligning our members and resources to strategically advance Milwaukee’s water technology cluster as the global epicenter for freshwater innovation. This bill will assist The Water Council’s efforts as they continue to command the attention of a global audience, and efficiently pinpoint future growth opportunities through this streamlined process.

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Events: November 2014

Open House: The BREW Panel & Open House

November 10
10:00 AM-12:00 PM
Global Water Center – Auditorium
247 W. Freshwater Way, Milwaukee, WI 53204
Register Here

In conjunction with MIlwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett’s Entrepreneurship Week, which celebrates the growing entrepreneurial spirit in Milwaukee, and Wisconsin, a panel discussion featuring the entrepreneurs behind the startups that comprise The BREW accelerator program’s Batch II. This panel is free and open to the public, although registration is required.Following the panel, meet the entrepreneurs personally in their office space to further engage and learn about their companies and future opportunities for collaboration and growth.  

Luncheon: The Changing Dynamics in Water Investments

November 12
12:00 PM-1:00 PM – Luncheon
Iron Horse hotel
500 W. Florida Street, Milwaukee, WI 53204

1:15 PM-1:45 PM – GWC Tour
Global Water Center
247 W. Freshwater Way, Milwaukee, WI 53204
Register Here

Join Dean Amhaus, President & CEO, and Scott Mosley, Director of Investment Strategies, both of The Water Council, as they are the featured keynote speakers during the CFA Society Milwaukee luncheon. Learn about the range of, and changing dynamics within water investment, The BREW accelerator program, and early-stage water investments. Immediately following the luncheon, attendees are invited to the nearby Global Water Center for a brief tour of the facility. Registration is required by Friday, November 7.  

Workshop: Networking H2O – Speed-Networking for Water & Young Professionals

November 12
6:00 PM-8:00 PM
Mo’s Irish Pub – 2nd Floor
142 W. Wisconsin Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53203
Register Here

The Water Council’s Talent & Education Committee invites all Members and students to participate in our the first speed-networking event, co-sponsored by Pentair and WaterTech USA. Expand you water professional network rapidly in a casual, relaxed environment. Bring your business cards and be prepared to offer your personal elevator pitch and your ask. Attendees are encouraged to arrive early, registration is required to secure your spot, limited to the first 55 guests, after which a waiting list will be created.  

Webinar: Meeting WI’s Phosphorous Water Quality Standards

November 12
12:00 PM-2:00 PM
Global Water Center – Auditorium
247 W. Freshwater Way, Milwaukee, WI 53204
Register Here

Wastewater utilities, regulators, and non-governmental watershed organizations will share their approaches, views, and the latest available information on the development of site-specific phosphorous criteria, agricultural partnership pilot projects, and efforts to achieve healthy phosphorous levels in lakes and streams. Don’t miss this opportunity to be well informed about evolving regulatory guidance and successful watershed improvement programs. Registration is required by Friday, November 7, direct questions to Mark Mittag,  

Conference: 2014 Wisconsin Early Stage Symposium

November 12-13
8:00 AM-11:00 AM
Monona Terrace Convention Center 
1 John Nolen Drive, Madison, WI 53703
Register Here

The symposium is designed to unlock Wisconsin’s entrepreneurial potential by providing the right combination of ideas, innovation, intellectual property and investment – as well as hands-on instruction and advice targeted to early stage companies ready to make the leap.

This year’s conference, with a theme of “30X10,” is celebrating a rich history that goes back to 1984. That year, Wisconsin’s first annual venture conference was held in Madison, pairing high-growth companies with investors and other business leaders from across the state. Originally the Madison Venture Fair, the event has been called the Wisconsin Venture Conference, the Wisconsin Life Sciences & Venture Conference – and for the past 10 years – the Wisconsin Early Stage Symposium. More than 480 companies have presented during the conferences in one format or another, including some of the largest technology companies that call Wisconsin home. 

Seminar: The Forgotten Infection – Educational Legionella Symposium

November 20
8:00 AM-2:00 PM
Hotel Allegro
171 W. Randolph St., Chicago, IL 60601
Register Here

Despite the amount of panic and fanfare with which it appeared on the scene in Philadelphia in 1976, Legionnaires’ disease has devolved in relevance over the years, surpassed in newsworthiness by contagious infections and viruses. Even as a Forgotten Infection, Legionnaires’ disease is still quite present and quite deadly. With a mortality rate of 40% for hospital-acquired cases and with a majority of building water systems colonized with the Legionella bacteria, it remains a serious problem, as the CDC reports that it is the single-most commonly reported pathogen associated with drinking water outbreaks. Join industry experts, Dr. Richard Miller, President, Environmental Safety Technologies, and Russ Nassof, Esq., Founder & President, Risknomics, as they lead an inaugural educational Legionella symposium to discuss a recently advanced building code standard, and how it can combat the ever-present threat of the Legionella bacteria. This event is free, but space is limited therefore registration is required. Breakfast and lunch will be provided.  

 Have an event you’d like to include in the Monthly Event Announcement? Download and complete the Event Announcement Form and return to


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HIRING: Small Business Program Manager at The Water Council – Apply by Nov. 13

Nametags_HorizontalCropThe Water Council is seeking qualified applicants for a NEW full-time Small Business Program Manager position.

The SMALL BUSINESS PROGRAM MANAGER is responsible for the implementation, development and oversight of The Water Council’s U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Regional Innovation Cluster contract. Under this new contract, The Water Council will create a Center of Excellence (CoE) for Freshwater Innovation & Small Business Development to promote the growth and development of small businesses operating in the water technology sector in the Great Lakes and Midwest regions. The CoE will provide business training, counseling, matchmaking and numerous other services and programming for small water technology businesses. Following the first year, the program is expected to expand nationally.

Reporting to the President & CEO, the Small Business Program Manager will implement the contract and manage all aspects of the CoE’s services and programming, which will have high visibility. This position will work in collaboration with the executive team at The Water Council and work closely with designated subcontractors, partners and small businesses to fulfill the SBA contract.

CLICK HERE for the complete position description.

Qualifications: Bachelor’s degree in business, marketing or liberal arts with 3-5 years of experience. Minimum of 3 years working with small businesses; Minimum of 2 years in developing or managing projects with multiple contractors; Minimum of 3 years working with state and federal agencies. The ideal candidate will have a Masters of Business Administration (MBA); Five years of experience working with small businesses and state/federal agencies; Understanding of water technology industry and small business development.

Applicants should submit cover letter and resume to by Thursday, November 13. Please include the position title in the subject line of the email.

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Introducing Scott Mosley, our new Director of Investment Strategies

Mosley10The Water Council has had a busy few weeks between attending WEFTEC 2014 in New Orleans to announcing the SBA Regional Innovation Cluster award. Activity has been moving at a fever-pitch! As part of the also recently announced partnership with JPMorgan Chase & Co. Small Business Forward program, The Water Council welcomes our new Director of Investment Strategies, Scott Mosley, to take the reigns of this initiative. Please take a moment to meet our newest addition to The Water Council team.

What drew you to get involved with The Water Council?

I grew up in Texas, where water – or the lack of it – is always on people’s mind.  Following university, I spent 5 years in the Navy as a shipboard Officer.  In the Navy, your life is in many ways ruled by the currents, tides, waves and storms – you are constantly surrounded by water and it’s a very integral part of your day-to-day life.  It was in the Navy, that I really began to get an appreciation of how vital having access to safe, clean water was.  Prior to joining The Water Council, I worked at the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC).  During my time at WEDC, I had the opportunity to work with Dean and the staff on a number of projects and I was able to see first hand the quality of the work that was happening and I wanted to be part of it.

What does your role entail?

My role will be twofold.  First, we are working closely with JPMorgan Chase & Co. to build a platform to expand the amount of money flowing into young, high-growth potential water companies.  Second, I will be establishing a presence in Madison so that we will be able to better connect both the talent and the innovation between Madison and Milwaukee.

What are you most looking forward to working at The Water Council?

Seeing the innovation that is happening in the water space and working with the water entrepreneurs as they work to solve very complex problems.

What do you hope to accomplish in your new role?

My number one goal is to increase the amount of money that is being invested in young water companies and innovative water technology.

Any other information or thoughts you’d like to share?

My door is always open and I’m happy to chat.  I’m also looking for a lunchtime cycling group – if anyone wants to ride over the noon hour, let me know!

Scott Mosley is the Director of Investment Strategies at The Water Council, he manages The Water Council’s relationships with outside venture capital funds, corporate venture capital firms and JPMorgan Chase.

In late 2011, Mosley was recruited to the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation to design and implement a program to recruit foreign capital and companies to the State of Wisconsin. He eventually led all capital formation and recruitment efforts for the organization. He was instrumental in launching the State of Wisconsin’s first venture fund focused on commercializing technology from the University of Wisconsin System campuses.

Scott has extensive international experience having lived and worked in the Middle East and Europe. Prior to joining WEDC, Scott owned an investment consulting firm and served as an Officer in the United States Navy. He is the holder of the prestigious Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst designation. He has an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin and a BA from Vanderbilt University in Nashville.


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HIRING: Communications Coordinator at The Water Council – Apply by Oct. 28

Nametags_HorizontalCropThe Water Council is seeking qualified applicants for a full-time Communications Coordinator position.

COMMUNICATIONS COORDINATOR is responsible for enhancing The Water Council’s online platform through website content management, execution of social media, and crafting and distributing effective email messaging. The Communications Coordinator is also responsible for assisting with the development of strategic marketing and communication plans and administering the plans for multiple initiatives and events. The ideal candidate will have a Bachelor’s Degree in Business, Marketing or Communications; One to three years of experience in creating and delivering electronic messaging and communication plans, and website and social media content management. Design experience and HTML skills are a plus.

CLICK HERE for the complete position description.

Our work environment offers a casual, yet fast-paced atmosphere where multitasking is essential. The ideal candidate should be comfortable working both independently and in a team setting. They must efficiently allocate time for optimal performance and effectively handle multiple demands, priorities and deadlines with an eye for details.

Applicants should submit cover letter and resume to by Tuesday, October 28. Please include the position title in the subject line of the email.

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