Widely considered one of the most prestigious business awards programs in the United States, the program recognizes entrepreneurs and leaders of high-growth companies who are excelling in areas such as innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities, while also transforming our world.
Deep Isolation is enabling the future of nuclear power by solving the global nuclear waste disposal challenge. Their advanced nuclear technology leverages directional drilling practices to safely and affordably isolate waste deep underground in a horizontal, vertical, or slanted borehole repository. By combining scientific and nuclear expertise with high aptitude engagement skills, Deep Isolation works with stakeholders and communities to design and deliver an equitable and environmentally protective disposal solution.
EY says this accolade celebrates “The audacious entrepreneurs building a more equitable, sustainable and prosperous world for all.” They describe awardees as “Unstoppables who imagine what’s possible and then pursue it.”
Muller is among 27 finalists from 24 Bay Area companies.
“I appreciate the recognition for Deep Isolation’s progress solving one of the world’s most intractable problems,” Muller said. “I am grateful that EY is recognizing the spirit of innovation and the work being done to tackle really hard problems.”
The rigorous vetting process to be named a finalist included a six-part essay application, in-person interviews and a panel of independent judges evaluating criteria including: Entrepreneurial spirit, purpose, company growth metrics and community impact.
Muller wrote in her essay that starting the world’s first spent nuclear fuel disposal company has been difficult, “But my passion for making the world a better place drives me to innovate in unexpected and necessary ways.”
Muller co-founded Deep Isolation in 2016 with her father Richard Muller, a University of California, Berkeley, physics professor. They are also co-founders of the internationally respected climate science nonprofit Berkeley Earth.
Deep Isolation has been mainly focused on opportunities in Europe, but it recently received its first federal funding (two projects worth $7.6M) from the U.S. Department of Energy: One is to design a universal disposal canister for advanced reactor spent nuclear fuel in partnership with U.C. Berkeley, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and NAC International; and one to partner with San Francisco Bay Area-based Oklo and two national labs to design a deep borehole repository for an advanced reactor spent fuel recycling facility.
“The 2022 Entrepreneur of The Year finalists have shown us that ambition, courage, ingenuity and empathy are key to driving change,” said Entrepreneur Of The Year Bay Area Program Co-director, Chad Bowar in a press release. “They have a mindset that drives them to strive for more and an unwavering commitment to their companies, customers and communities.”
Regional award winners will be announced on June 14. The winners will then be considered by the National judges for the Entrepreneur Of The Year National Awards, which will be presented in November at the annual Strategic Growth Forum®, one of the nation’s most prestigious gatherings of high-growth, market-leading companies. The Entrepreneur Of The Year National Overall Award winner will then move on to compete for the EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ Award in June 2023.
For more than 35 years, EY US has celebrated the unstoppable entrepreneurs who are building a more equitable, sustainable and prosperous world for all. The Entrepreneur Of The Year program has recognized more than 10,000 U.S. executives since its inception in 1986.
About Deep Isolation
Deep Isolation is a leading global innovator in nuclear waste storage and disposal solutions. Driven by a passion for environmental stewardship and scientific ingenuity, the company’s patented solution of advanced nuclear technologies enables global delivery through its partnerships with industry leaders as well as flexible IP licensing options.