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2016 WaterSense Partners of the Year
On October 6, 2016, the 2016 WaterSense Sustained Excellence Award winners, Partners of the Year, and Excellence Award winners were announced at the WaterSense and Alliance for Water Efficiency Awards Luncheon. The luncheon was held at the WaterSmart Innovations Conference and Exposition. .
Since the program began in 2006, WaterSense labeled products have helped Americans save 1.5 trillion gallons of water and $32.6 billion in water and energy bills. In 2015 alone, WaterSense labeled products saved 437 billion gallons of water. By working together, WaterSense partners across the country continue to make a difference every day.
WaterSense recognizes four Sustained Excellence Award winners, seven WaterSense Partners of the Year, and nine Excellence Award winners for helping to advance and promote WaterSense and water efficiency throughout 2015.
The winners are:
2016 WaterSense Sustained Excellence Award Winners:
2016 WaterSense Partners of the Year:
- Athens-Clarke County (Georgia) Public Utilities Department
- Citrus County (Florida) Utilities
- City of Charlottesville (Virginia)
- Cobb County (Georgia) Water System
- Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District
- Energy Inspectors Corporation
- Sonoma-Marin (California) Saving Water Partnership
2016 WaterSense Excellence Award Winners:
- Cascade (Washington) Water Alliance
- High Sierra Showerheads
- City of Durham (North Carolina) Water Management
- Sonoma-Marin (California) Saving Water Partnership
- City of Carmel (Indiana) Utilities
- City of Fort Worth (Texas)
- Regional Water Authority (California)
- The Toro Company
- American Standard
Learn about the Sustained Excellence, and Partners of the Year winners' accomlishments (PDF) (7 pg, 2.6MB) and Excellence Award winners' accomplishments (PDF) (4 pg, 1.6MB) and read the EPA press release .
2016 Sustained Excellence Award Winners
Delta Faucet Company
A two-time WaterSense Sustained Excellence winner, Delta Faucet Company continues to raise awareness and educate consumers and trade professionals about the WaterSense program and the benefits of WaterSense labeled products. In 2015, the Delta brand partnered with Warrior Dash, a messy 5-kilometer obstacle course race that hosts more than 34,000 muddy runners nationwide. As part of the partnership, Delta launched its HappiMess campaign with a shower station featuring 69 WaterSense labeled showerheads. The company’s Brizo brand donated WaterSense labeled products to more than 30 homes as part of its St. Jude Dream Home® sponsorship.
The Delta brand promoted WaterSense through online efforts, including a water savings Twitter chat featuring WaterSense representatives that garnered more than 300,000 impressions. Delta celebrated Fix a Leak Week with a press release encouraging water efficiency and promoting WaterSense labeled products, which earned more than nine million impressions.
Delta Faucet Company updated its Continuing Education Unit (CEU) course on bath trends and products for architects, designers, and other customers. The module includes information to help educate trade professionals about WaterSense and its product specifications. More than 1,350 trade professionals took the course in 2015.
Four-time WaterSense Sustained Excellence winner Kohler Co. showcased creativity in promoting water efficiency and WaterSense labeled products in 2015. The company is one of the sponsors of “Change the Course,” an outreach campaign developed by Bonneville Environment Foundation, Participant Media, and National Geographic, where consumers were encouraged to text pledges to reduce water use. Kohler donated WaterSense labeled products and used WaterSense messaging throughout the campaign. Kohler also participated in “Connect the Drops,” led by the sustainability nonprofit organization Ceres, to help California policymakers ensure water efficiency targets are met in response to ongoing drought.
To reach 2,000 San Francisco residents in need, Kohler created mobile showering stations featuring working models of WaterSense labeled showerheads, toilets, and faucets. Kohler’s showering stations were also installed at Bonnaroo, a four-day music festival in Tennessee with more than 100,000 concertgoers, which Kohler promoted via an extensive social media campaign. The company continued promoting WaterSense labeled products and messaging throughout 2015 with two Facebook campaigns, one centered around Earth Day and one a water-saving campaign, resulting in more than 3.5 million impressions.
"There’s always concern that when you reduce the amount of water it’s going to affect performance. With WaterSense, you can save water without sacrificing performance, and we helped show consumers that."
Director of Marketing, Projects
Specifications, & Sustainability
During 2015, Kohler’s “Bold Experience Tour” mobile traveling display visited 101 locations in 21 states. The semi-trailer, outfitted with working models of WaterSense labeled toilets, faucets, and showerheads, demonstrated to consumers and more than 14,500 plumbing professionals the benefits of WaterSense labeled products. Kohler also partnered with Lowe’s Home Improvement, a WaterSense retail partner, on a national “Kohler Big Event” marketing campaign that featured WaterSense labeled toilets, faucets, and showerheads. In addition to its marketing campaign, Kohler collaborated with WaterSense promotional partner Puget Sound Energy to provide WaterSense labeled showerhead rebate information at local retail stores in the greater Seattle area. The company also contributed to the Plumbing Efficiency Research Coalition’s study on the drainline transport of solid waste in commercial buildings. Kohler engineers provided key analytical guidance to help understand the impacts of lower flush volumes and other variables on wastewater system performance.
The Home Depot
Now a two-time WaterSense Sustained Excellence winner, The Home Depot showed its commitment to WaterSense through product promotion and outreach efforts in 2015. All toilets and faucets sold in The Home Depot stores are WaterSense labeled, and the company worked last year to ensure that all the showerheads it sells in its stores were WaterSense labeled by September 2016. To drive sales of WaterSense labeled products, The Home Depot offered more than $43.8 million in product markdowns. The retailer also partnered with utilities to make more than 350 local utility rebates available to its customers. This included a statewide campaign in California to provide $100 incentives for WaterSense labeled toilets and a separate effort in 80 stores to offer instant rebates on WaterSense labeled showerheads, the latter of which resulted in incentives on 50,000 showerheads sold.
The Home Depot made use of its extensive media and advertising platforms to promote WaterSense. The company featured messaging about the program on blogs and articles and leveraged WaterSense content and infographics on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest sites to gain nearly six million impressions. Print advertising and direct mail that included information about WaterSense garnered close to two billion impressions.
In partnership with the Georgia Aquarium, The Home Depot installed an interactive, digital matching game that features the WaterSense promotional label. If a pair of matching fish species is chosen, a water-saving tip is presented to the participant. The company worked with several WaterSense utility partners to host Fix a Leak Week events at stores around the country. As the company geared up for its 2015 Earth Day event, The Home Depot invited a regional WaterSense representative to its headquarters to educate attendees about water efficiency and collaborated with WaterSense manufacturer partner Kohler to promote WaterSense labeled products. The Home Depot also continued hosting more than 50,000 web-based video courses to train sales associates on WaterSense and WaterSense labeled products.
Two-time Sustained Excellence winner KB Home continues to fulfill its commitment to sustainable and water-efficient homes. In 2015 alone, KB Home built 233 WaterSense labeled homes, an increase of 142 percent compared to its labeled homes built in 2014. Additionally, the company introduced four KB Home communities in California in which all homes will be built to meet the WaterSense labeled homes specification. The company also maintained its program commitment by including WaterSense labeled products in the more than 8,000 homes built in 2015. KB Home has trained all of its employees on how to explain and promote the benefits of WaterSense labeled products and has helped foster business for certified irrigation professionals who help promote water savings outside of the home.
With an eye on the future, KB Home collaborated with the Residential Energy Services Network, in partnership with the Natural Resources Defense Council, EPA, and a coalition of water efficiency experts, homebuilders, environmental organizations, and home energy professionals, to initiate an effort to develop the nation’s first Water Efficiency Rating Index to score homes based on their water efficiency.
KB Home continues to incorporate WaterSense program marks and information into its advertising, outreach, and other promotional materials in print, online, and social media, thus broadening the reach of both its efforts and those of WaterSense. KB Home invited an EPA representative to talk about WaterSense at a special media event focused on water efficiency and the launch of the company’s Sea Cliff community of WaterSense labeled homes in San Diego, California. Company representatives highlighted WaterSense during presentations at building conferences and provided content for WaterSense consumer and builder newsletters.
2016 Promotional Partners of the Year
Athens-Clarke County (Georgia) Public Utilities Department
To earn its second Promotional Partner of the Year Award, the Athens-Clarke County (Georgia) Public Utilities Department’s Water Conservation Office (WCO) conducted a number of unique consumer and commercial outreach activities to promote WaterSense in 2015. Its Certified Blue restaurant conservation program, which started in 2012 with WaterSense at Work materials, expanded to include 33 local businesses, many of which received pre-rinse spray valves and aerators from the utility. Children visiting Certified Blue restaurants also received “We’re for Water” kids’ activity sheets while waiting for meals.
The sixth Annual Athens Water Festival was a great success, with a 33 percent increase in attendance compared to 2014 and 18 organizations providing tips on water education to local families. During the festival, families could find the WaterSense logo, which was hidden in different locations, to earn a free T-shirt. The hunt increased brand awareness of the logo by 72 percent of the participants. The Little Lily Pad Hop Project promoted education and fun activities at local schools. The WCO distributed Froggie Care Packages containing Fix a Leak bookmarks and other WaterSense goodies and materials to students in 21 elementary school classrooms, reaching more than 1,000 families.
To bring water conservation to the cleaning industry, the utility developed a partnership with Peachy Green Clean Co-op, a local cleaning service cooperative. WCO trained Peachy Green’s staff to find leaks, look for the WaterSense label, and provide household water assessments. WCO also provided free aerators and showerheads for Peachy Green’s customers.
Athens-Clarke County Public Utilities really took the cake, however, when its water conservation coordinator planned a water-efficient wedding and wrote a blog post about the experience, titled “12 Ways I Saved Money and Water at My Wedding.” The article, featured in Bride 2 Be magazine, explained how to work WaterSense and water efficiency into a wedding.
Citrus County (Florida) Utilities
Citrus County (Florida) Utilities may be a small utility, but it earned its Promotional Partner of the Year Award by making a big splash in 2015 with water efficiency education and other efforts. The utility sponsored a We’re for Water Classroom Challenge to teach 400 third through fifth grade students how to find and fix leaks and save water at home. Teachers from eight county schools received lesson plans that featured WaterSense materials and local water topics, and students tested 600 toilets and identified 130 leaks for a potential water savings of 21,000 gallons a day. The students were surprised to learn how many of their homes had leaks and were unaware. The program helped the students gain a deeper insight into how to conserve water.
"WaterSense helps us break that barrier of lack of knowledge. It's a respected entity, and when people see EPA WaterSense, they know they can trust it."
Water Conservation Manager
Citrus County Utilities
The Citrus County Board of County Commissioners adopted a resolution that proclaimed March 16 through 20, 2015, as Fix a Leak Week in Citrus County. Citrus County Utilities celebrated Fix a Leak Week with three different activities: Schedule a Specialist, Facilities Checkup, and a Water Conservation Expo. Results included: 69 customers participated in Schedule a Specialist; a local bank received a facility check-up that saved over 400,000 gallons of water in 9 months; and 150 residents attended the Water Conservation Expo workshops, where the utility distributed 54 WaterSense labeled showerheads and 104 faucet aerators.
The utility used WaterSense’s Shower Better infographic on a March bill stuffer to promote WaterSense labeled showerheads and aerators, resulting in the installation of 107 WaterSense labeled showerheads and 193 faucet aerators. Through a cooperative funding initiative with the Withlacoochee Regional Water Supply Authority, Citrus County Utilities connected with Southwest Florida Water Management District, another WaterSense partner, and provided 46 free irrigation evaluations to customers. The results from the first 12 participants showed a decrease in water use of nearly 500,000 gallons per year.
City of Charlottesville (Virginia)
The City of Charlottesville, Virginia, a two-time WaterSense Promotional Partner of the Year Award winner, continued to carry out a range of activities to engage the community on WaterSense and water conservation. In 2015, the city collaborated with another WaterSense partner, the Albemarle County Service Authority, to launch the Love Your Landscape contest during Sprinkler Spruce-Up 2015. Participants could win prize packages to help make their lawns more water-efficient, including soaker hoses, adapters, shut-off valves, rain gauges, soil moisture meters, and T-shirts with WaterSense’s “I’m for Water” slogan. The contest and summer water conservation campaign were featured on the city’s website, during a summer radio campaign, and in the local newspaper.
To promote WaterSense labeled toilets, the City of Charlottesville provided off-campus students at the University of Virginia with more than 170 leak detection dye tablets and brochures on its rebate program. In March 2015, the city held its Fix a Leak Week Family 5k, where 80 participants raced a “running toilet” to the finish line. As a result of these efforts, 222 toilets were replaced with WaterSense labeled models in 2015. While the city actively promotes WaterSense on social media throughout the year, during Fix a Leak Week it also leveraged the #FixALeak hashtag on Twitter and Facebook. For the Shower Better campaign, the city partnered with its energy conservation and efficiency program, Energize!Charlottesville, to promote energy and water savings through a 5-minute Shower Challenge and other tips. The city has also used the WaterSense Check, Twist, Replace message throughout the year, including a barbershop quartet spot promoted on local and cable television to encourage the community to save water and use WaterSense labeled products. Throughout 2015, the city used WaterSense infographics and videos on its website to promote campaigns. The city also used 321 total tweets with water efficiency messaging.
The City of Charlottesville has an active program to engage with the public, particularly younger audiences, at different events throughout the year. All events provide information about the WaterSense program and labeled products. The city has customized several WaterSense documents, including the Fix a Leak Week activity page, and includes the WaterSense partner logo on its own products. The WaterSense mascot, Flo, is also a frequent visitor to city events, with her travels featured on social media. During the summer, a Blue Team comprised of middle and high school students visited homeowners to provide tips and conservation kits. Overall, the city handed out more than 600 water conservation kits and an additional 500 WaterSense labeled faucet aerators to Charlottesville residents.
Cobb County (Georgia) Water System
Cobb County (Georgia) Water System, a five-time winner of the WaterSense Promotional Partner of the Year Award, maximized its water savings potential by actively participating in all 2015 WaterSense campaigns. Fix a Leak Week showcased the utility’s biggest event, the third annual Water Drop Dash 5k and Water Festival. Coinciding with Shower Better Month, Cobb County partnered with The Home Depot during the WaterSense and ENERGY STAR® sales tax holiday October 2 through 4, 2015, to rebate 42 toilets. This effort led to a 100 percent rise in rebates for WaterSense labeled products compared to Cobb County’s average weekend rebated purchases in 2015.
In June 2015, Cobb County introduced Tappy the Turtle, its new mascot, who talks about the WaterSense program and other water-efficient activities on Facebook and Twitter. Tappy wears a “We’re for Water” button and encourages residents to follow him and WaterSense messaging on his social media page. Education was also a focus during WaterSense’s Sprinkler Spruce-Up campaign. Cobb County’s “Ask an Expert” traveling display visited garden clubs, environmental fairs, and community events to educate customers about efficient watering practices.
Cobb County Water System took advantage of the WaterSense H2Otel Challenge in 2015 and worked with other WaterSense partners Green Plumbers USA and Niagara Conservation to install WaterSense labeled Stealth toilets at interested hotels. Summer efforts focused on outdoor water efficiency, and Cobb County promoted irrigation professionals certified by a WaterSense labeled program in its “What to Ask Your Irrigation Professional” handout. The utility also worked with the Water Research Foundation in 2015 on a drought cost-benefit analysis tool to research a new project on water use in multi-family buildings and water supply planning.
Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District
The Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District is being recognized for its first Promotional Partner of the Year Award. In 2015, the Metro Water District celebrated the more than 100,000 toilets in its region that were replaced in recent years with more efficient WaterSense labeled models by launching the Great Plumbing Fixture Giveaway. The Metro Water District partnered with a WaterSense manufacturer partner, TOTO USA Inc., to nominate nonprofit organizations, and residents voted via social media to select a winner. TOTO provided the winner with $1,000 worth of WaterSense labeled fixtures, while runners-up received free water audits from a local plumber. The Metro Water District also used WaterSense at Work’s best management practices to target the highest commercial water users in the area with water audits.
In conjunction with Fix a Leak Week 2015, the Metro Water District sponsored its annual Water Drop Dash 5k and Water Festival with more than 500 runners. The top four runners received $50 gift cards to The Home Depot, a WaterSense retailer partner. The Metro Water District used Fix a Leak Week graphics on its banners and distributed WaterSense’s kids’ activity worksheets and bookmarks at the race. Staff were interviewed about the festival on a popular local radio show, “Dave Baker Home Improvement.”
The Metro Water District provided The Home Depot’s plumbing department managers at regional stores with “Hot Tips” about its rebate programs; during the Georgia Sales Tax Holiday, it distributed a tool kit with fliers, press releases, and website messaging featuring WaterSense. In collaboration with the University of Georgia Extension, the Metro Water District finalized its Water-Wise Landscape Guide highlighting WaterSense labeled products. The Metro Water District also held its second annual calendar contest. Residents were asked to submit photos of regional water resources and the top photo highlighting water conservation in action was included in a calendar, which also featured the WaterSense partner logo.
2016 Licensed Certification Provider Partner of the Year
Energy Inspectors Corporation
Since its inception 20 years ago, Energy Inspectors Corporation has continued to expand its green building programs and has now earned its fourth WaterSense Licensed Certification Provider Partner of the Year Award. In 2015, the company certified 233 homes for KB Home, a WaterSense builder partner, to meet the WaterSense labeled homes specification, more than double the number of homes the organization certified in 2014.
Through its partnership with KB Home, Energy Inspectors Corporation emphasized the benefits of implementing water-saving measures as homes are built. Heightened by severe drought in California, the company successfully drew attention to the merits of the WaterSense program to its builder clients, resulting in an increased number of homes certified. Energy Inspectors Corporation also trained an additional inspector to perform WaterSense specification inspections, totaling 12 trained inspectors to date. Energy Inspectors Corporation also incorporated WaterSense into its messaging for builders and installing trades across the Southwest to further the reach of the program.
2016 Professional Certifying Organization Partner of the Year
Sonoma-Marin (California) Saving Water Partnership
Three-time WaterSense Professional Certifying Organization Partner of the Year Sonoma- Marin Saving Water Partnership (SMSWP) continues to expand its WaterSense labeled Qualified Water Efficient Landscaper (QWEL) certification program. In 2015, SMSWP worked with six new organizations in Idaho, California, and New Mexico, which might not otherwise have had the resources to develop a certification curriculum, to adopt the QWEL program. SMSWP also directly helped more than 65 irrigation professionals to earn certification through its WaterSense labeled program. One of SMSWP’s staff contributed to an article in Turf Magazine promoting the benefits of being certified by a WaterSense labeled program. Another staff member presented to the Independent Technical Panel highlighting the low-cost approach of the QWEL program.
The Partnership regularly communicates with QWEL certified professionals in the Bay Area of California to make them aware of WaterSense-related events and continuing education opportunities. SMSWP also participated in local outreach events to promote QWEL professionals to consumers. At the 2015 Sonoma County Fair, SMSWP displayed information on how to make lawns more water-efficient and introduced residents to QWEL certified irrigation professionals. SMSWP included QWEL booths and displays at events with WaterSense retailer partner The Home Depot during a plant sale and WaterSense promotional partner City of Santa Rosa (California) at a do-it-yourself Drought Solutions event. SMSWP also engaged in state initiatives to promote WaterSense training and certification as California continues to address water conservation during its drought.
2016 Excellence in Strategic Collaboration
Cascade (Washington) Water Alliance
To earn its Excellence Award for Strategic Collaboration, the Cascade (Washington) Water Alliance demonstrated how to make the best of relationship building with a diverse portfolio of partners. In 2015, Cascade established a partnership with Built Green, a nonprofit residential building program in the greater Seattle area, to encourage the construction of WaterSense labeled homes in Washington. Cascade provides $1,000 rebates to builders who construct homes to meet WaterSense and Built Green criteria. Cascade also collaborated with the King County Housing Authority to audit 112 affordable housing units for potential water savings, as well as provide 156 WaterSense labeled showerheads and aerators and 12 WaterSense labeled toilets for retrofits.
To encourage water-efficient practices in local schools, Cascade developed the Teacher Fellows Program, which recruits master teachers and enables them to develop water-based science and social studies curricula that have been adopted by local school districts. To save water and promote WaterSense in the commercial sector, Cascade collaborated with SWB Consulting to install more than 600 labeled showerheads, aerators, and pre-rinse spray valves in schools, restaurants, and health clubs. Cascade also worked with WaterSense promotional partner Puget Sound Energy to offer residential rebates for 1,064 WaterSense labeled showerheads. Cascade developed a Water Conservation for Real Estate Professionals workshop, which provided training for 196 real estate appraisers and brokers about the value of water and how to achieve water efficiency in homes.
High Sierra Showerheads
Although it is a small company with only five employees, High Sierra Showerheads earned its Excellence Award for Strategic Collaboration by successfully partnering with state and local agencies to make a big splash in water-efficient technology. High Sierra worked with the California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation to identify a WaterSense labeled tamper-proof showerhead that would be suitable for the specification requirements of prisons and correctional facilities. The department worked to retrofit more than 6,000 showerheads in facilities to save an estimated 385 million gallons annually.
After a successful pilot in which tenants expressed satisfaction with High Sierra’s 1.5 gallon-per-minute WaterSense labeled showerheads, the Fresno (California) Housing Authority entered into an agreement to install the showerheads in more than 2,500 homes. The company also partnered with Colorado Springs Utilities to install 1,400 showerheads in Colorado federal and state facilities, including the Air Force Academy, Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado College, and El Paso County’s Criminal Justice Center, allowing these facilities to fulfill their goals and requirements to use water- efficient products.
2016 Excellence in Promoting WaterSense Labeled Products
City of Durham (North Carolina) Water Management
The City of Durham (North Carolina) Water Management agency led several campaigns and events in 2015 to educate its community about WaterSense and promote WaterSense labeled products. During Fix a Leak Week, the city partnered with The Home Depot and Lowe’s Home Improvement to offer water conservation clinics to nearly 130 customers at local stores, featuring displays with the WaterSense logo.The city joined the National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation and showcased WaterSense labeled products via television and online advertisements, Facebook, and participation in public events, reaching over 3,600 people. As a community effort in 2015, the city’s mayor was featured in ads showing the installation of WaterSense labeled showerheads and faucet aerators to demonstrate water efficiency. In addition to promoting WaterSense at events, the City of Durham also provided 691 WaterSense labeled toilet rebates to qualified customers and conducted nearly 280 residential and commercial water audits. The city also sold 277 water efficiency kits that included WaterSense labeled showerheads, faucet aerators, and other efficient products.
Sonoma-Marin (California) Saving Water Partnership
In earning an Excellence Award for Promoting WaterSense Labeled Products, the Sonoma- Marin Saving Water Partnership (SMSWP) in Santa Rosa, California, promoted WaterSense labeled products in a hands-on fashion. SMSWP’s Drought Drive-Up events allowed 1,200 participants to walk, bike, or drive up to the event locations and build their own custom drought tool kit made up of WaterSense labeled showerheads and other water-saving gadgets. SMSWP premiered a Water Smart Home show booth in 2015 featuring WaterSense labeled products at events, including a fair where SMSWP educated approximately 270,000 people over a 15-day span. Fair attendees could wear a fake mustache and take a selfie in a mirror featuring the WaterSense promotional label to post on social media. The Partnership’s Water Smart Home show booth was also put on display at the Santa Rosa Plaza Mall, which had around 5.5 million visitors in 2015, for 28 days. SMSWP also educates K-12 classrooms on WaterSense and works with the Sonoma County Green Business Program to educate green businesses on WaterSense labeled products.
2016 Excellence in Education and Outreach
City of Carmel (Indiana) Utilities
In 2015, the City of Carmel (Indiana) Utilities used all the WaterSense outreach campaigns and many other partner tools to promote water efficiency. The utility promoted Fix a Leak Week with more than 20 tweets or retweets of #FixALeakWeek, a press release, and a cover article in the Full Circle, a tri-annual newsletter sent to more than 27,000 customers. The utility also reached tens of thousands of residents with its “Leaky Toilets” YouTube video on how to fix toilet leaks and also promoted the benefits of WaterSense labeled toilets. During Sprinkler Spruce-Up, the utility worked with The Home Depot and created a workshop on maintaining and improving irrigation systems. The workshop was promoted in the Full Circle and via email blasts to neighborhood associations. The utility partnered with Delta Faucet Company to promote WaterSense labeled showerheads at the mayor’s State of the City Address, which was hosted by the local Chamber of Commerce, to more than 600 attendees during Shower Better in October. Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard proclaimed October as “Shower Better Month” and promoted the importance of water efficiency to the citizens of Carmel.
The utility collaborated again with The Home Depot during October 2015 by hosting clinics that educated the community about water efficiency. At the 2015 Public Safety Day, the City of Carmel Utilities developed a “water wheel” game featuring the WaterSense partner logo that asked participants questions about WaterSense labeled products. More than 5,000 people participated in the Public Safety Day event. The City of Carmel also participated in a variety of other events, promoting WaterSense to more than 5,000 people throughout the year.
City of Fort Worth (Texas)
The City of Fort Worth (Texas) is earning an Excellence Award for Education and Outreach in 2015 for events that reached a range of audiences. During Fix a Leak Week 2015, Fort Worth partnered with a local running club to host its first 5- kilometer “Chasing Leaks, Fixing Flappers” running race. Several area WaterSense partners and EPA helped with outreach before and during the event. The event included educational activities and demonstrations explaining to the 150 racers and other visitors how to find and fix leaks and showing how much water a leaking toilet can waste in a week. Another effort targeting toilets is the city’s SmartFlush Toilet Program, through which more than 4,000 WaterSense labeled toilets were distributed to residential and commercial customers.
In an effort to improve understanding the types of plants that are adapted to North Texas climates, the City of Fort Worth partnered with the North Central Texas Council of Governments and The Home Depot to hold 28 regional plant sales to promote water-efficient landscapes. Bill stuffers and an e-magazine helped to carry the water-smart landscape message to consumers. To promote water efficiency to a younger audience, the city participated in Waterama, a two- day festival that educated fifth grade students on all aspects of water use, treatment, and reclamation. In 2015, the city also hosted its first Water Efficiency @ Work Symposium, which targeted commercial and industrial facilities in Fort Worth with water efficiency best management practices.
Regional Water Authority (California)
To earn its Excellence Award for Education and Outreach, the Regional Water Authority (RWA) demonstrated that it’s never too early to start educating kids about the importance of saving water. Partnering with the Sacramento Bee Media in Education Program, RWA sponsored a “Be Water Smart Decorating” contest for preschool through fifth grade students to decorate pictures of RWA’s detective- inspired mascot, Les Leaky, as he hunts down leaks and other water-wasting mysteries. More than 420 kids entered the contest, and the top five winners received $25 Amazon gift certificates. The contest poster was published as a full- page, double-sided Sacramento Bee advertisement during Fix a Leak Week 2015 accompanied by an infographic with practical water-saving tips, educating adults as well as kids. RWA made a Fix a Leak Week radio spot that played on iHeartMedia channels throughout the Sacramento region. RWA also promoted water-saving tips and demonstrated how to check for leaks with a WaterSense labeled toilet on a local television program, “Sac & Co.” Extending education to local governments and businesses, RWA used information from WaterSense at Work in a presentation hosted as part of a local sustainability program series.
The Toro Company
To earn its Excellence Award for Education and Outreach, the Toro Company reached a range of audiences through different approaches. In 2015, the company conducted 46 training events and displayed at 22 trade shows and expos to educate contractors, distributors, and consumers on water-efficient practices and WaterSense labeled products. Toro continued its partnership with the Wyland Foundation’s National Mayor’s Challenge for Water Conservation, which encourages residents to commit to water-saving activities. This partnership allowed the company to share information on outdoor water-efficient products with a broader audience not typically reached through traditional channels. In addition to providing 60 WaterSense labeled controllers to participating households across the country, Toro introduced a calendar that featured “Water is Life” artwork by elementary school children and participated in community events with Wyland in California and Texas.
In 2015, Toro embarked on a new endeavor by sponsoring and producing a weekly radio program, “The Water Zone,” on KCAA in southern California to educate the public on products and best practices for outdoor water efficiency. One of the early episodes featured a speaker from WaterSense discussing the benefits of labeled controllers. Toro also launched a new website in 2015, watersmart.toro.com, dedicated to educating the public about water-saving products and practices, rebate information on water-efficient products, and links to government websites such as WaterSense.
2016 Excellence in Innovation and Research
To earn its Excellence Award for Innovation and Research, American Standard took water-efficient faucet product innovation to new heights in 2015 when it engineered and manufactured residential faucets created with three-dimensional printing. Sold under the DXV by American Standard brand, these are the first ready-for-market residential faucets to be printed in metal, and all three designs meet WaterSense performance and efficiency criteria. American Standard also worked closely with the Plumbing Efficiency Research Coalition to explore the performance effects of flushometer-valve toilets on drainline carry in plumbing systems. The research was critical in helping WaterSense to finalize its specification for commercial flushometer-valve toilets. As a result of its drainline carry research efforts, the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials named C.J. Lagan, American Standard’s senior manager of testing and compliance and fixtures, its “2015 Industry Person of the Year.”
About the Awards Program
Each year, WaterSense Partners of the Year contribute to the program's success by enhancing the market for water–efficient products, practices, and services. Learn what previous WaterSense Partners of the Year have done to increase water efficiency and promote the WaterSense label within their respective partner categories.