“For each of us there will come a day when we’re sitting around in our rocking chairs, telling our grandkids what we did with our lives. We should think about how we want to tell that story—and then live it today. We should have faith that if we live life with purpose and integrity, our dreams will come true. Sometimes that takes courage, hard labor and faith, but that’s what our work is about.” – Bill Prior, Founder

Paintings are courtesy of Carol Prior. Carol, wife of the late Bill Prior, has a strong, lifelong attachment to water as exhibited in her watercolors and in her unwavering dedication to Tangent’s mission for providing advanced technologies that drive water sustainability.

In 1969, a young engineer took a chance. Bill Prior set up shop in a two-car garage to develop his first ambition — a sailboat that could fly over the water on hydrofoils. His wife said he was “off on a tangent.” The innocent comment not only motivated Bill to build the dream, but it also gave rise to the business’ name: Tangent Company.

More projects materialized including a plastic snow sled for children, a deck winch for big sailboats to automatically adjust for the wind, and a home water softener. The softener project gradually dominated Tangent Company until Bill and Jim Kewley – another young engineer – separated it as Kinetico Incorporated.

The company quickly grew, attracting a committed group of employees who built the organization into an industry leader noted for state of the art technology, quality products, and dedicated customer service. After a 36 year run Bill and Jim decided to sell Kinetico Incorporated in early 2006 and Bill was expected to retire.

Bill had other things on his mind. He envisioned changing the way the world thinks about water.

In the spring of 2008, Tangent Company – the garage start-up that spawned Kinetico – was relaunched and ready to fly once again. A talented team of people joined the voyage with a mission to make the world a better place regarding quality of life and the environment by changing the way the world treats, uses and manages water.

Remembering Bill Prior

On February 28th, 2016, Tangent Company’s founder – Bill Prior – passed away. During his eight years leading Tangent Company, Bill cultivated a culture of passion and mutual respect. Bill wanted the organization to be a place where dreamers are trusted with the freedom to think big thoughts and are provided the support to bring blueprints to life. His compassion for his team was evident in daily conversations around the office, where he would often inquire about personal interests before sparking any discussion about the task at hand.

We are honored to carry on Bill’s vision of changing the way the world thinks about water. We strive to work each day at his high personal and professional standards, in celebration of a dreamer who truly embodied the definition of a life well lived.