During the recently held 2012 Recycling Summit in Point Clear, Ala., the Southeast Recycling Development Council (SERDC) launched an annual awards program for professionals and organizations that demonstrate “extraordinary leadership in advancing recycling in the southeastern United States.”
SERDC’s LEAP awards program is designed to recognize persons or organizations that have helped “propel recycling upward and forward” in the Southeast region and beyond. The LEAP awards are intended to recognize deserving individuals or organizations that have proven leadership in one or more of the following recycling industry areas:
- Advances in Economic Benefits, including job creation, cost savings, and maximization of revenue/income;
- Advances and Growth in Recycling Tonnage/Capacity;
- Advances in Innovation and Technology; and
- Advances in Recycling Outreach and Education.
For the inaugural award year, SERDC looked for leadership nominees whose work has occurred during the period since SERDC's creation (about 7 years ago).
The 2012 awardees include:
Representative Alan Boothe: Rep. Boothe (R-AL) was re-elected to his fourth term as a member of the Alabama House of Representatives.
Boothe has been a strong supporter of the Act 2008-151 and helped pass what has become known as the “Alabama Recycling Bill.” To date this recycling grants program has generated more than $7 million in grant money for infrastructure and education improvements for recycling programs for Alabama communities.
Furthermore, when legislation arose in a recent session of the legislature that would have been harmful to Alabama recycling programs, SERDC says Boothe was instrumental in defending the state’s recycling investments and preventing the legislation from progressing. Booth also was instrumental in helping promote the first Alabama Legislative Recycling Day event with the Alabama Recycling Coalition.
Alcoa: Recognizing that recycling rates in the southeastern U.S. lagged behind the rest of the nation, Alcoa supported several state recycling organizations through the donation of tens of thousands of 18-gallon bins. Today those bins are recovering material in government offices, schools, and individual residences all over the southeast collecting all kinds of commodities and recyclables.
In 2010 and 2011, the Alcoa Foundation supported Keep America Beautiful’s Recyclemania competition, and another 100,000 6-gallon bins were donated to colleges and universities across the country. In February of 2012, Alcoa hosted the Action to Accelerate Recycling (AAR) summit, bringing together more than 90 leaders from 70 different companies or organizations focused on increasing recovery with the goal of boosting the U.S. recycling rate by 20 percent in three years.
Alcoa also announced its recent investment of $2 million into the AAR aiming to increase awareness of recycling, create incentives to recycle, and provide greater access and infrastructure to aid in the recovery of aluminum, plastic, glass and paper for recycling.
Scott Mouw: Scott Mouw began as a county solid waste manager who saw an opportunity in recycling as a way to reduce cost for the county in the face of rising solid waste costs and the expected implementation of Sub-Title D. He was named the state’s recycling coordinator. He brought together a perspective that went beyond local government collection to incorporate all stakeholders in the value chain into the supported community, the SERDC adds. His program leads the region with a grant program that funds not only local government programs, but also private processors and recycled material users.
He is currently the chief of Community and Business Assistance for the N.C. Division of Environmental Assistance and Outreach. In this capacity, Scott directs North Carolina’s recycling program, which includes efforts to improve material collection, develop material markets, increase public commitment to recycling, and help create and implement materials management policy.
His staff works with the Carolina Recycling Association, Solid Waste Association of North America, Councils of Governments, Association of Counties and the Municipal League, to provide technical assistance for program development. He is a member of the Technical Advisory Group for AMERIPEN and has also participated in the EPA Sustainable Recycling Financing dialogue and the Sustainable Packaging Coalition Labeling project and also participates in wider national and regional efforts to improve recycling.
SERDC says it was pleased to recognize these three very deserving award recipients during our inaugural LEAP awards presentation. Boothe and Mouw have contributed greatly to increasing sustainable recycling in the Southeast. SERDC thanks them for their leadership in propelling recycling upward and forward in the Southeast.