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CHICAGO — The Milwaukee Water Council has been selected as the inaugural winner of the Growing Blue Award.
The award recognizes individuals, organizations and government entities for advancing public understanding of how water is as essential to economic and social growth as it is to sustaining the environment.
The award was presented at the 2012 American Water Summit in Chicago, in cooperation with summit host Global Water Intelligence, and was based on a live vote by summit attendees that included thought leaders from the public and private sectors. The Louisville Water Company received an award of distinction.
The Milwaukee Water Council was recognized for comprehensive efforts to build collaboration among regional companies, governments, universities and entrepreneurs that supports economic growth and positions Milwaukee as an important global water hub.
"Our focus on responsible, green economic growth and the advancement of water technologies is attracting global attention while spurring investments, jobs, research and development, and high levels of cooperation that we believe will ultimately make not just Milwaukee but the world a better place," said Dean Amhaus, president and CEO of the Milwaukee Water Council. "We''re very honored to have been selected by those who best understand how water plays a role in sustainability."
Nine organizations were nominated for the award by the executive committee of Growing Blue, a collaboration of 11 diverse organizations active in the environmental and water fields. The four finalists included Ceres, Louisville Water Company, Milwaukee Water Council and the Water Environment Federation.
During the summit, each finalist presented its program results to the audience. Once all presentations were completed, audience members selected the winner via handheld voting devices. The resulting winner was announced at the conclusion of the day.
"Since the inception of the Clean Water Act 40 years ago, public awareness of how water impacts the environment has rapidly grown," said Laurent Auguste, president and CEO of Veolia Water Americas and founding member of Growing Blue. "Meanwhile, awareness of water''s value to our economic and societal well-being is growing but requires much more effort as we are all truly required to work more closely together to make smarter decisions for our collective future. The nominees presented highly notable work from very different perspectives, and the members of Growing Blue are very proud to have the opportunity to recognize each of them for their many accomplishments."
Louisville Water Company''s "Pure Tap" Campaign promotes the quality and value of water provided to the Louisville community by branding tap water and supporting the brand through community outreach. The "Pure Tap" name was trademarked in 1996.
The Growing Blue Award will be presented on an annual basis. Members of Growing Blue are not eligible for the award. The World Business Council for Sustainable Development was not part of this year''s selection process.