Iowa State University to Host Water Innovation Challenge 2016

Inventor of Baked Lays to lead water quality business plan creation conference.

Ames, Iowa – August 10, 2016 – The Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative at Iowa State University is hosting an event that will challenge participants to collaborate in creating new ideas that change the way we think about, manage, and use water in our state.

“Over its two days, students and others interested in water issues will be engaged to creatively address challenges so important to agriculture and to Iowa”, commented Kevin Kimle, Rastetter Chair for the Agricultural Entrepreneurship.

Water Innovation Challenge 2016, the two-day conference planned for September 1-2, participants will be led through the creative process to conceptualize powerful business plan ideas. Industry experts, scientists, and entrepreneurs will share their expertise on the latest ideas and innovations that impact water quality in Iowa so participants can create their own in-depth business plans.  

Featured facilitator, Dr. Jeffrey Stamp, an entrepreneur himself and inventor of Frito-Lay Baked! Lays® Potato Crisp, will lead participants through the entire business concept creation process including, strategizing, collaboration and developing a business pitch. Dr. Stamp is a native of Sheldon, Iowa and leads creative innovation sessions worldwide for corporations, universities, and start-ups. Not only will participants learn skills and techniques for creating ideas, but they will also gain entrepreneurial mindset skills that can be used daily and in future careers.

“Dr. Stamp is recognized worldwide as a master creative practitioner, and has conducted very highly rated sessions at our past conferences.  He has unique skills to bring out the creative best in business professionals and university students and I know that participants will have a great experience,” said Kimle.

Starting Thursday afternoon, attendees will be challenged to push themselves to think outside of the box, while being led through the process of conceptualizing new business plans to meet the ongoing need as it relates to water issues. As the evening comes to an end, four to six person teams will be formed, centering around the most promising business concepts. Friday will provide time for the newly formed teams to collaborate and strategize for the final competition. Participants will have the opportunity to present their newly conceptualized business plans during the afternoon session to a panel of elite judges. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three teams.

For more information and to register, please visit Questions can be directed to Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative Program Coordinator, Amanda Blair, at or 515.294.4945.