Jon Czas

Co-founder & CEO

Jon Czas

Jon Czas is a co-founder and CEO of Trident Desalination, overseeing the commercialization of the TSSE technology.

HE also serves as Director of Investment and Strategy at the C Change Group, a family of investment funds committed to materially improving the world’s utilization of energy and raw materials through transformative infrastructure and technology.

Prior to Trident, he operated as an independent project developer and president of CCA Enterprise, focusing on technologies that interact within the water-energy nexus. He previously spent time as a private practice attorney in Washington DC at WSGR, advising emerging growth companies in venture capital transactions, corporate governance and restructuring, and complex M&A activities.

Jon is an executive advisor for development and multilateral finance to companies ranging from artificial intelligence and nanotechnology to mineralogy and water. He is also a member of the IRIS+ expert working groups for Energy, Water, and WASH impact measurements.

In his free time, he serves on the Board of Directors of the Pilgrim Project International, enjoys distance running, and is an ardent supporter of Arsenal FC.

He holds a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and a B.A. in Political Science from St. Edwards’ University.

Dr. Ngai Yin Yip

Co-founder & CTO

Dr. Ngai Yin Yip

Dr. Ngai Yin Yip is a co-founder and CTO of Trident Desalination, and is the inventor of the TSSE technology who continues to push the technology forward.

Dr. Ngai Yin Yip received his Ph.D., M.S., and M.Ph. in Chemical and Environmental Engineering from Yale University, and B.Eng. in Civil and Environmental Engineering (Minor in Business Administration) from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He joined Columbia University in 2015 as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Engineering.

Dr. Yip’s research interest is in advancing technologies and innovations to address challenges at the nexus of water, energy, and the environment. Currently, the research in his group is focused on i) desalination of ultrahigh salinity brines, ii) zero-liquid discharge technologies, iii) advancing more sustainable decentralized wastewater management approaches, iv) efficient conversion of low-grade heat to useful work, and v) development of better membranes for environmental applications. Description of active projects can be found here.

His dissertation work on novel membrane technologies for the sustainable production of energy and water earned the CH2M Hill/AEESP Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award and the Henry Prentiss Becton Graduate Prize in 2015. He has authored over 20 peer-reviewed publications and has won the ES&T Best Papers (second runner-up in 2013).

Sarah Cone

Co-founder & Board chair

Sarah Cone

Sarah Cone is a co-founder of Trident Desalination and is the Chairman of the Board.

She is also the founder and Managing Partner of Social Impact Capital, a venture capital firm that produces top decile returns by investing in the earliest stages in companies that are solving the world’s most difficult problems. Trident Desalination was incubated at Social Impact Capital, in collaboration with DCVC, due to the pressing need for widespread, low-cost desalination solutions and emerged from a comprehensive review of all of the desalination technology in the world.

Earlier in her career, Sarah worked for the consulting firm CTI, helping to restructure the R&D departments of large Japanese corporations. Sarah has also been an Associate at Illuminate Ventures, a Silicon Valley-based venture capital fund investing in B2B SaaS. She got her start in venture capital working for the “emerging technologies” venture capital group at Omidyar Network. Sarah has also worked in the legal department of Google, at the technology law firm Fenwick & West,, and at the technology policy non-profit Public Knowledge.

Sarah has a BA in interdisciplinary studies from the Evergreen State College and a JD from UC Berkeley. At UC Berkeley, Sarah won the Advocacy Award for persuasive writing, the Jurisprudence Award for academic excellence, and her thesis “Reforming Federal Tax Policy to Support Social Entrepreneurs” received honors.