2019 category winner

Khunapong Khunaraksa

Khunapong Khunaraksa is a Water Leader, Asia Pacific Expert, and International Storyteller. He is on a mission to help all Southeast Asians have access to clean water. His unique work experience in Australia, the United States, and seven Asian countries puts him in a perfect position to strengthen Asian-Australian engagement.

Khunapong is currently serving as a board member with Gravity Water, a Not for Profit organisation, to help increase drinkable water access for children in Asia. He is also a leading clean water consultant helping global water startups expand across Southeast Asia.

Khunapong’s water journey started over a decade ago when he completed his Master’s Degree in Water Engineering at the University of New South Wales, Australia. His passion for the Asia Pacific Region stems from his childhood upbringing in Sydney and Bangkok. Previously, Khunapong was a Southeast Asia Portfolio Manager for Water.org, a 2019 global award-winning not for profit organisation that works to increase access to clean water and sanitation via innovative financial approaches, including small loans. Khunapong led the development of Water.org’s first-ever water utility program. Over 300,000 Cambodians, Indonesians, and Filipinos have been empowered with access to clean water and toilets through programs he managed.

Prior to Water.org, Khunapong worked for Team Group, a Thai engineering and management consulting outfit. He helped to spearhead the company’s successful expansion into Myanmar. He also worked as an Environmental Scientist for a boutique environmental company in Sydney. He provided consultation services to over 50 Sydney Catholic Primary Schools. Khunapong shares his own stories on stages around the world.

He also interviews global water leaders to gain and share insights with young water professionals. He hopes to equip them with the knowledge to start a water entrepreneurial journey to solve the world water crisis.

2019 CATEGORY winners

Dr Imran Omar Lum

Director, Islamic Finance, NAB

Astrid Haban-Beer

Barrister, Victorian Bar

Dr Meru Sheel

Westpac Research Fellow, ANU

Tim Fung

Co – Founder and Chief Executive officer, Airtasker

Eddie Woo

Mathematics Teacher, Author & Communicator

Khunapong Khunaraksa

Board Member at Gravity Water and Founder/CEO at Khunapong Consulting

Benjamin Law

Writer and broadcaster

Philip Le Liu

Councilor, City of Melbourne

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