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Outstanding Washington Recyclers to Receive Awards May 14

Thursday, April 04, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Emily Phillips
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The Washington State Recycling Association (WSRA) will highlight organizations, businesses and individuals for outstanding recycling achievements at their Recyclers of the Year Awards Banquet on Tuesday, May 14, 2013, part of the WSRA annual conference at Skamania Lodge.


Recyclers of the Year are selected by a panel of WSRA members representing a variety of aspects of the recycling industry, including collectors and processors, government agencies, businesses and non-profit organizations.


The 2013 WSRA Recyclers of the Year include these outstanding honorees:


Individual Recycler of the Year: Jeanette Brizendine, City of Federal Way

Jeanette Brizendine, City of Federal Way Recycling Project Manager, has demonstrated an impressive commitment to developing and implementing programs that engage the public and increase participation in recycling. Jeanette has implemented fun, educational, and innovative programs like Federal Way’s Recycle Palooza Contest and Family Green Fest. Her efforts also increased recycling "beyond the curb,” including 10,000 pounds of shredded confidential documents, 55 car seats, and 20 cubic yards (880 lbs) of Styrofoam.  More information: Jeanette Brizendine,


Nonprofit Recycler of the Year: Sustainable NE Seattle Tool Library

Over 14 months, Sustainable NE Seattle created the NE Seattle Tool Library as a community resource for borrowing tools and equipment, facilitating re-use of unused tools, teaching bike repair and building, conserving resources, and building community. The tool library also provides educational, community events for sharing information about resource conservation and climate change. To date, approximately 60 people and organizations have donated 650 tools for concrete work, gardening, wood working, fabric arts, plumbing and electrical work. Over 50 volunteers have donated 850 hours to launch the tool library. More information: Susan Gregory,  


Public Agency Recycler of the Year: City of Shoreline

The City of Shoreline introduced a series of new community recycling and waste reduction programs, including multi-family recycling parties designed for in-unit recycling collection at apartments and condominiums. Eight parties resulted in increased recycling at four Shoreline properties. The City has also installed 12 sets of garbage and recycling "BigBelly Solar” compactors throughout the City to promote waste reduction, resource conservation and climate protection. In 2012, an estimated 101 cubic yards of recyclables were collected and diverted from the landfill using the six sets installed along Aurora Ave N. More information: Rika Cecil,


Institutional Recycler of the Year: Franciscan Health System

The Franciscan Health System has demonstrated significant accomplishments in environmental stewardship, community involvement, waste prevention, and recycling through the implementation of aggressive comprehensive recycling programs at all five of its full-service hospitals. Franciscan Health System’s green teams at each hospital expanded their recycling programs from cardboard only to include commingled recycling, collecting used cooking oil for use as biodiesel, food waste/organic recycling, and blue sterilization wrap recycling. More information: Rozi Arends,


Public Education Recycler of the Year: Waste Management

Waste Management implemented a Spanish language outreach campaign, updated bilingual recycling instructions, and increased usability of the Waste Management Northwest website to raise awareness around and increase recycling rates in King and Snohomish County. In addition to an extensive media campaign, call center training, and creating a Spanish website page, the Waste Management Northwest public education team attended three of the most popular Spanish-speaking community events in the Puget Sound area—Hispanic Seafair at Seattle Center, Fiesta Sunday at the Evergreen State Fair, and Fiestas Patrias at Seattle Center. More information: Robin Freedman,


Innovative Recycler of the Year: City of Issaquah

The City of Issaquah, in partnership with CleanScapes, pioneered a new retail experience designed to help residents reduce waste and increase recycling. The "Rethinking Stuff Store” offers recycled, recyclable, and up-cycled goods, featuring durable house wares and gifts. It also functions as a walk-in service center, where residents can access recycling resources, educational materials and services. At the rear of the store is a dedicated area where residents can drop-off hard-to-recycle items. The store also serves as a community forum for environmental outreach and education, where local youth groups can attend waste reduction presentations, and local nonprofits and environmental groups can hold regular meetings. More information: Micah Bonkowski,


Higher Education Recycler of the Year: Western Washington University, Office of Sustainability

Western Washington University’s student-run Recycle Center collects 3,800 pounds of recyclables from Western’s campus daily and almost one million pounds annually. Western’s campus-wide Zero Waste Western campaign includes composting all pre and post-consumer waste at all three Western dining halls, and all but one retail location. At one "Go Green” athletic event each quarter, Western provides waste reduction tips during half-time, and guidance in front of sorting stations as students exit. In 2012 three water bottle refill stations were installed to reduce plastic waste. Western’s waste reduction efforts have inspired other city actions such as "landfill” container labeling, and a recycling color scheme for public recycling receptacles to make visual identification easy between campus and city parks. More information: Seth Vidana,


Nucor Steel Recycling Solutions: General Biodiesel

General Biodiesel has developed a GreenPartner™ program centered on community-based used cooking oil (UCO) recycling programs. In addition to its core business of recycling UCO for food service businesses, General Biodiesel’s GreenPartner™ program has expanded to provide free UCO recycling for municipalities and residents. In 2012, the company added four new neighborhoods and cities, placing oil recycling depots in easily accessible locations. More information: Elisa C. La Cava,


Youth Education Recycler of the Year: Mercer Island School District

The Mercer Island School District has incorporated environmental stewardship into the school board’s 2020 Vision, and each of the five schools in the district has made outstanding progress in promoting youth involvement in recycling and waste prevention. The district has participated in the King County Green Schools Program for several years, with all five schools recognized as Level One Green Schools for their effective waste reduction and recycling practices, particularly in reducing lunchroom waste.  Three schools have completed Level Two (energy conservation) and one has completed Level Three (water conservation). More information: Dr. Gary Plano,


Business Generator Recycler of the Year: Port of Seattle/Sea-Tac Airport

Through strategic planning, Seattle Tacoma International Airport (Sea-Tac) developed and implemented a number of objectives that increased their recycling rate from 24% to 30.5%, in 2012. By donating to a local food bank, they provided enough food for over 385 meals per week. By requiring all chemical products used by Port staff to be on the Approved Products List, and working directly with maintenance staff and construction contractors on pollution prevention, Sea-Tac has reduced the volume of hazardous waste generated from their operations. More information: Stacy Fox,


Reuse Recycler of the Year: The RE Store REvision Division

In October 2011, the RE Store launched its REvision Division to create affordable, quality furniture from reclaimed materials and encourage the community to reuse and recycle. The long-term goal of this project is to create a market for used building materials that would otherwise end up in the landfill. Strategies include hosting monthly in-store demonstrations that feature the REvision Division coordinator building items on the sales floor, providing written material in the store and online for customers, and hosting workshops for those individuals who need hands-on instruction and inspiration. More information: Bray Hayden,



An additional highlight of the WSRA Awards Banquet will be the induction of three outstanding long-time Washington State recyclers into the WSRA Recycling Hall of Fame:

  • Frances Ambrose, retired waste reduction/recycling educator, Skagit County
  • Don Frey, retired municipal relations manager, Republic Services
  • Carl Woestwin, waste prevention planner, Seattle Public Utilities


For more information about the WSRA conference and awards presentation, visit or call 206-244–0311. Award applications are available each November at

 Washington State Recycling Association | 545 Andover Park W, Ste 209, Tukwila, WA 98188 | 206.244.0311 |

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