Every hero has a sidekick: NWI fire departments receive grants from Indiana American Water

Every hero has a sidekick: NWI fire departments receive grants from Indiana American Water

“There’s a symbiotic relationship between a water department and a fire department,” Justin Mount, Major Account Manager at Indiana American Water, said. “To ensure that there is water, we’ve got to communicate effectively.”

Housed out of Gary, Indiana, Indiana American Water is a water utility company that serves communities across the Region, including Hobart, Portage, Lake Station, Burns Harbor, and more. 

“We have a very large footprint in Northwest Indiana,” Mount said. 

As a way to repay the multiple communities, Indiana American Water works with its first response teams. Through fire departments, Indiana American Water distributes safety grants through its program for stations in need. Mount said these grants help Indiana American Water maintain and continue to build relationships between these local fire departments, as well as collaborate and build. 

“It’s money from us to them so they can use it as they need as long as it’s used to help their fire department,” Mount said. 

Mount said the grants are usually used for new equipment or any other useful tools the fire department would like to have. However, the gift-giving of these grants goes beyond the materials. Mount shared that he often creates deeper relationships with the men and women behind the fire hose at the check presentations. 

“There are a lot of things that pop up in organic conversation,” he said. “I’ve met with most local fire departments.”

Mount recalled when the grant was presented in Hobart, he met with the fire chief and discussed the use of old, working Indiana American Water fire hydrants to conduct training for the station. This way, firefighters could learn proper practice before going out on calls. 

Mount enjoyed having the moment of connection to touch base with local departments, even if the moments are brief.  

“I think we all get busy in life. We’ve all got jobs that we are doing. I think it’s always important to pause and say thank you,” Mount said. “It’s nice to hear about things [in the community]. Being a utility company that is part of public safety is something that Indiana American Water the team is aware of and holds close. We are very committed to the communities we serve on a variety of fronts,” he said. “Especially with our public safety and our public safety officials.”

Mount also stated that he enjoys the partnership between the fire department and the water department to be their “eyes on the street” to ensure city water is being used properly. 

“At American Water, we keep life long. We try our best to stand true to it,” Mount said. 

With the help of local fire departments, Indiana American Water can have even more support, along with its many dedicated employees, to make its slogan a promise. 

To learn more about Indiana American Water and how it serves your community, visit the company website here.