Water and sanitation infrastructure isn't just part of what we do, it is in our DNA. Born out of the American Water Works Association (AWWA), the largest nonprofit, scientific and educational association dedicated to managing and treating water, Water For People was established in 1991.

In the early 1980s, Ken Miller, with CH2M and a former president of AWWA; Wayne Weiss, with Black & Veatch; and John B. Mannion, a former executive director of AWW​A, shared the vision of a world where all people have access to safe water and adequate sanitation. The three joined forces to support Water For People’s creation and future as a leader in social responsibility and innovation in the sector.

We continue to have a very strong partnership with AWWA, the Water Environment Federation, the Water Quality Association, the National Association of Water Companies, the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, and the Association of Metropolitan Water Agencies.


As our name suggests it all comes down to people. Our mission is about people and our work is for people. And the most important resource we have to succeed at our mission is the incredible people who work for, with and in conjunction with us. We’d like to thank all the volunteers, staff, board, field partners, funding partners, donors and strategic partners for their dedication, tenacity and selflessness in helping us work to solve the challenges of unsafe water and poor sanitation in the developing world.

Senior Leadership

  • Eleanor Allen
    Eleanor Allen
    (Chief Executive Officer)
  • Nick Burn
    Nick Burn
    (Chief of Programs)
  • Sue Dorsey
    Sue Dorsey
    (Chief Financial Officer)
  • Sandra Hillenbrand
    Sandra Hillenbrand
    (Executive Assistant)
  • Sara Orens
    Sara Orens
    (Chief People Officer)
  • Steve Riggins
    Steve Riggins
    (Chief Marketing Officer)

Eleanor Allen

Eleanor Allen has dedicated her career to improving the state of the world with respect to water and sanitation. First as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Dominican Republic, then as a consulting engineer (at CH2M and ARCADIS), and now as the CEO of Water For People. As a professional civil engineer, Eleanor has lived over half her professional life in Latin America and has worked all over the world. Currently she is focused on social entrepreneurship and leading Water For People to bring reliable access to safe water and sanitation in Latin America, Africa and India. She has two boys and loves to experiment cooking (and eating) new foods with her husband..

Nick Burn

Nick Burn has spent nearly 30 years of his life managing international development programs. Trained as an agriculturalist, he lived in Indonesia and Tanzania for 10 years, and traveled for work extensively in countries across Africa, South Asia and Latin America. Over the past five years he has been working with Water For People to implement programs he believes in, programs that build lasting systems and promote aid independence. He believes that Water For People’s work can bring real change to the poorest of the poor.

Susan Dorsey

Susan Dorsey has over 20 years experience in international development and finance. Susan is currently the Chief Financial Officer for Water For People, an NGO focused on sustainable, market-based solutions to global water and sanitation challenges. Prior to joining Water For People in 2009, Susan spent twelve years as Executive Director of Friendship Bridge, a microfinance and education organization operating in Vietnam and Guatemala. Susan served as a Peace Corps volunteer in rural Costa Rica from 1990-1992 working in small business development. Prior to Peace Corps, Susan worked for several years in banking and finance with the First National Bank of Maryland.

Susan is an adjunct professor at the University of Denver’s Josef Korbel’s School for International Studies. Susan has an MBA from the Yale School of Management and a Bachelor’s degree in Business and Finance from the University of Vermont.

Sara Orens

Sara Orens has spent the majority of her career in global Human Resources (HR) having found the path to HR through working in immigration. She has an insatiable desire to learn which complements an organization with employees across eleven countries. Sara’s experience spans a variety of fast-paced, dynamic work environments in both private and non-profit sectors. She is passionate about people and culture, and truly enjoys contributing her HR expertise to support WFP’s mission. Sara loves spending time with her little family, enjoying the beauty of Colorado’s outdoors, and photography.

Steve Riggins

Stephen’s first passion is art, and he began his career as a graphic designer after a short stint in a punk band, eventually becoming a vice president in the experiential design and advertising industry and then took the leap to the nonprofit sector as CMO of Water For People. His experiences have taught him the value of storytelling and audience participation through visual and face-to-face engagement, both for corporations and nonprofit causes, including brands such as Corona, Jose Cuervo, Samsung, and Sony. Steve has a wife, three daughters, and a dog named Rooster.

Sandra Hillenbrand

Sandra Hillenbrand comes to Water For People with 10 years of experience as the executive assistant in the operations and maintenance division at CH2M. She is passionate about inclusivity, and strives to ensure that the Water For People company culture extends beyond Denver headquarters. Sandra is a Colorado native, and enjoys any opportunity to hike, bike or ski her way around The Rockies.

Finance and Systems

  • Margarita Doneva
    Margarita Doneva
  • Javier Gutierrez
    Javier Gutierrez
  • Brianne Hovey
    Brianne Hovey
  • Adam Jensen
    Adam Jensen
  • Tara Willis
    Tara Willis

Global Programs

Marketing and Communications

  • Vicky Andersen
    Vicky Andersen
  • Jossie Auerbach
    Jossie Auerbach
  • Mardanda Bodas
    Maranda Bodas
  • Kristin Sturges Hood
    Kristin Sturges Hood
  • Emma Pfister
    Emma Pfister
  • Danielle Vala
    Danielle Vala

Business Development

  • Chrissey Buckley
    Chrissey Buckley
  • Kelly Honecker
    Kelly Honecker
  • Mary Beth Côté-Jenssen
    Mary Beth Côté-Jenssen
  • Julie Kauffman
    Julie Kauffman
  • Dawn Merriott
    Dawn Merriott
  • Nina Miller, PhD
    Nina Miller, PhD
  • Caitlin Harris
    Caitlin Warkentin
  • Shaylee Zaugg
    Shaylee Zaugg

People and Admin

  • Mike Ksenyak
    Mike Ksenyak
  • Kat Leitzmann
    Kat Leitzmann
  • Kat Wasberg
    Kat Wasberg


Water For People is one of the leading innovators in the water and sanitation space, in big thanks to our team. We’re made of storytellers and researchers, engineers and fundraisers, and more. We come from business and academia, and nonprofits and the arts. We’re creative, passionate, motivated, and always ready to take risks and change things up a bit. We know that global impact is only possible if we live and breathe our core values: to believe in people, keep it local, keep good company, and keep our promises.

Our team is based in Denver, but we have employment opportunities around the world.

Employee benefits include paid time off, health and dental insurance, retirement compensation, and much more. We enjoy working in a team-based environment and value the benefits of a diversified workplace. Women and people of color are encouraged to apply. Water For People is an equal employment opportunity employer and does not discriminate based on age, race, disability, ethnicity, marital status, religion, sex, veteran status, or other unlawful factors, with respect to recruiting, hiring, job assignments, promotions, discharge, compensation, training, and other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment.


The strong support of the Water For People community allows us to get a step closer to achieving our goals every day. In each country program, the organization works in collaboration with local partners — the local government, local private sector, local civil society, and the communities — to develop a strategy and priority plan. In North America, Water For People receives enormous support from committees.

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Accountability in Word and Deed

Water For People appreciates the loyal support of all our donors, including individuals, businesses, organizations, and governments. A strong and generous donor base helps us further our mission throughout the developing world.

From our guiding principle of keep good company to our efforts to monitor all our work in the field, to our program to internally audit our country programs in addition to external audits, we're serious about accountability.

Water For People welcomes inquiries from prospective donors. For more detailed financial information, please click on the links below to download Water For People's current Audited Financial Statements and Form 990s.

Annual Report

Audited Financial Statements


Water For People is a 501(c)(3) organization (EIN 84-1166148)


Where does Water For People work?

Water For People currently works in nine countries around the world: Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Bolivia, Peru, Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda, and India. Our employees in-country know the culture, language, and communities we serve. However, based on special grants and funding, we have worked in more than 40 other countries over the years but have found that a targeted approach is more effective and efficient.

What makes Water For People unique from other water and sanitation organizations?

Water For People works towards ‘full-coverage’
This means, every family, every school, and every clinic receives access to safe water and sanitation.
Capacity-building is critical to our work
This means Water For People ensures that when something breaks, someone has the capacity to fix it.
Water For People, along with local communities and governments must invest in their own water solutions. Everyone pays.
Monitoring and evaluation
Water For People guarantees 10 years of monitoring and evaluation to ensure sustainability.
Market-based approaches
Water For People works closely with the private sector (local businesses and entrepreneurs) to ensure ongoing service is provided. This helps to create jobs!
Replication and scale
Water For People will demonstrate a model that others can take on to create a global movement where everyone has access to water and sanitation!
Focus on sustainability
Water For People thinks about the long-term every step of the way. We want these communities to be independent of ongoing foreign aid for their water and solutions. Just like you and me, we want these communities to have reliable access to water and sanitation for generations!
We believe that in order to truly solve the water crisis we must be accountable for our programs. Therefore we share all of our financials and investment numbers with the public through our reporting platform.

How does Water For People choose communities/projects to assist?

Water For People performs a special data collection and analysis survey of any new areas that it considers working in. This data collection process ensures that all factors are considered in working in a new area. At this time, there are no new countries being considered.

When new countries are considered, the first factor is a clear need for improved water supply and/or sanitation. A variety of factors are considered in choosing a country and region in which to work: community motivation, costs, the availability of a trustworthy NGO partner, the support of local government, and a safe environment. To ensure system sustainability, Water For People requires a commitment from the beneficiary community.

Water For People’s country coordinators carefully target specific regions (county-sized) within their countries where work will be focused. The goal is to bring 100 coverage in water and sanitation within each region, and then replicate this model in new regions.

Where can I find information on Water For People's impact?

Water For People works to reach every family, every school and every clinic in the areas where we work with reliable access to water. This means we work to reach every single person—the most vulnerable, hardest to reach and marginalized—Everyone, with safe drinking water and sanitation services that last not just today but for years, for generations, forever. Our Impact is measured over time by assessing the increase in access to water and sanitation and the likelihood that access can be sustained over-time. Please visit our reporting portal for more information and to see your impact.

How can I volunteer to work for Water For People?

The World Water Corps is one of Water For People’s volunteer programs that gives you the opportunity to travel abroad and support the organization in a tangible way. You can share your unique skills and experience in support of the development of sustainable water resources, improved sanitation facilities, and hygiene education programs.

Email Us

Have a question not answered above? Let us know at info@waterforpeople.org and we will respond as quickly as possible. Thank you!


Want to get in touch with our team? Send us an email to info@waterforpeople.org, and we’ll make sure it gets to the right person. We do our best to respond as quickly as possible to as many as possible!

Water For People is a 501(c)(3) organization (EIN 84-1166148)

Our numbers are based off the following data:

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Please note:

Our site is meant to function in the latest versions of the major browsers, both on the desktop and mobile operating systems. Internet Explorer versions 9 and older are not supported by this site. To see this site in its intended state, we recommend choosing another browser (such as Chrome).

The last version of Internet Explorer was version 11. Now Microsoft is pushing 'Edge'. Older versions of IE aren't even supported by Microsoft anymore. This article is a bit dated, but is a quick read and helps to explain why you really should upgrade: Please Upgrade Your Browser. Essentially, dated browsers are a huge risk for the user.

Alternatively, if you don't feel like upgrading your browser, you can also use our full site on your phone.

Why Don't We Fix Our Site for X Browser?

Essentially, Water For People is a non-profit and we would rather spend money on our causes instead of the very significant amount of money that it would cost us to design and maintain a website that works for legacy, unsupported browsers.