Michael Ramos is, at his core, a problem solver. A City of Chicago licensed engineer and Environmental Protection Agency certified HVAC technician, he’s currently a Chief Building Engineer with the Chicago Public Schools at Von Stueben High School. That’s where a problem crossed his desk. One that inspired a solution that can ensure universal accessibility and affordability of safe drinking water for millions of people.
Von Stueben’s drinking water had elevated lead levels. Through research, the school’s team learned the root cause was standing water in the building’s plumbing system. Effective but very expensive solutions like reverse osmosis systems were well beyond the public school’s budget. So it pursued manual flushing, with Michael’s team responsible for a daily routine where each individual drinking water outlet was turned on for 1-2 minutes to “flush” through standing water and the lead it contained. Seeing firsthand the logistical challenges involved, he realized it wasn’t sustainable. So je set out to automate the process.
From his home workshop he created a system. When installed, the results spoke for themselves. Von Stueben’s average drinking water lead level went from 13.10 PPB to undetectable PPB practically overnight, and stayed there. Seeing this, Michael knew he’d created a solution that could help millions more than the 1700 students at Von Stueben High School. Named for his autistic nephew, the Noah Water Quality Maintenance System was born. Its mission is to lead the mitigation and eradication of lead and other toxins in everyone’s drinking water, effectively and affordably.
Michael continues to serve as a CPS Chief Building Engineer, a job he he loves.In his spare time he hopes to develop a new platform for energy efficiency in aged or outdated infrastructures, combining today’s technologies with a whole lot of common sense.
He resides in Chicago, in a home he’s outfitted with a Noah System where he, his wife Norma, their children Dania, Ijaz and Oliver, their dog Bella and their cat Phat Girl enjoy safe drinking water, every day.