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Cuyahoga County Secures Funding For Fresh Water Institute

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The Fresh Water Institute will focus on leveraging our water resources

Executive Chris Ronayne announcing grant from the Cleveland Foundation to support the Fresh Water Institute.

CUYAHOGA COUNTY, OH – Today, Cuyahoga County Executive Chris Ronayne announced a $250,000 grant from the Cleveland Foundation to support the Fresh Water Institute. He made the announcement during the Climate Leadership Conference in downtown Cleveland. The institute will serve as a beacon of education, advocacy and economic development dedicated to preserving our vital water resources. The grant will fund a dedicated project manager who will lead the launch, development, and implementation of the Fresh Water Institute.


“The Cleveland Foundation’s investment in the Fresh Water Institute is a testament to its commitment to environmental sustainability,” said Cuyahoga County Executive Chris Ronayne. “This funding will launch the Fresh Water Institute to address critical water issues and support initiatives that will benefit both our environment and communities throughout the county.”


The Fresh Water Institute will be built on three pillars:


Education and Research: The Fresh Water Institute will inspire learners and explorers to understand the environmental impact of our waterways. The County will launch an educational engagement program to work with local students to delve into the importance of the Great Lakes and gain exposure to freshwater career opportunities.


Advocacy and Access: The government’s role in protecting our natural resources is critical. The Fresh Water Institute will convene community partners on crafting a shared agenda to advance policies affecting freshwater development and access.


Economic Development: The Fresh Water Institute will focus on creating a blueprint to attract freshwater-dependent industries to Cuyahoga County and create water-focused jobs to boost our economy and workforce.


“The Fresh Water Institute will be a first-of-its-kind center for research, stewardship and economic development that leverages our region’s extraordinary freshwater resources,” said Lillian Kuri, Cleveland Foundation President & CEO. “The institute builds on the community's progress to position Cleveland as a global leader in freshwater innovation and exemplifies the kind of cross-sector collaboration that sets our region apart.”


In addition to the Cleveland Foundation grant, Congresswoman Shontel Brown earmarked $500,000 to develop the project.


“The Fresh Water Institute will be a leader in advancing innovative solutions for water sustainability, and this funding will bolster our efforts. The Institute’s work is essential for protecting the water resources crucial to the health, economy, and well-being of our region,” adds Executive Ronayne.


To learn more about our climate and sustainability initiatives at Cuyahoga County, visit