Association of West Virginia Solid Waste Authorities

2009 Volunteer of the Year


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Announcement by Mark D. Holstine

Ladies and gentlemen, guests, (Mr. or Madam) Chair, good evening. In my short tenure as Executive Director for the WV Solid Waste Management Board, I have met some of you and have learned through our Board Members and staff the invaluable contributions that every one of you make as volunteers.  As part of my early indoctrination into the job as Executive Director, I learned that I am granted this unique privilege of honoring the Association of WV Solid Waste Authoritiesí Volunteer of the Year for 2010.                 

Being nominated by your peers for this prestigious award is in, and of itself, truly an honor.  The State of West Virginia and its county and regional solid waste authorities are fortunate to have so many worthy volunteers who serve with distinction.

Tonight, we are going to recognize one special person that is being recognized for their many years of achievements and accomplishments in volunteer service to their county.  This individual has been a county solid waste authority member since the early 1990s serving as the Chair of that solid waste authority for the past 10 years.  Throughout this time they have spearheaded numerous efforts to expand recycling, initiated clean-up efforts, educated the public on the importance of recycling and championed the benefits of maintaining a clean and healthy environment.

Back in 2000, under this individualís direction, the county solid waste authority introduced a mascot to serve as the face of the authority helping to promote environmental and solid waste programs. To this day, this mascot appears in the newspaper weekly with a different message promoting recycling, litter control and solid waste disposal. 

Under this volunteerís leadership, the authorityís accomplishments are many.  They include:

         Working cooperatively with their county commission to improve the countywide recycling program. As a result, a new Recycling Ordinance was adopted that includes twice monthly pickup of curbside recyclables, commercial recycling of fluorescent bulbs, recycling of plastic and aluminum containers at community events, requiring multi-family dwellings to participate in recycling and giving enforcement power to the local solid waste authority.

         Committing time, money and personnel to participate in an electronic recycling pilot project. At their first event, over 60 thousand pounds of electronic waste was collected and recycled.  Since that time, the county has held numerous e-Cycling events and removed over 200 tons of electronics from the waste stream.

         Establishing a Trash Assistance Program to assist low-income citizens that are dealing with the cancellation of their solid waste collection service.  

         Organizing major community cleanup events and the regular use of work release road crews for litter cleanup.

Our 2010 volunteer of the year also serves as a volunteer member of  the Recycling Coalition of West Virginia, Inc., a non-profit environmental organization whose mission is to promote the effective and sustainable reduction, reuse and recycling of materials otherwise destined for disposal.

This individual is also a key player in this organization, the Association of West Virginia Solid Waste Authorities.  As Chair, he was successful in bringing together representatives from local solid waste authorities across our state, growing the associationís membership and helping to make this annual educational conference on solid waste management an invaluable resource to all of the solid waste professionals and volunteers across the State.

Because of his commitment to the environment, recycling and litter control, he has unselfishly dedicated much of his life to keep West Virginia healthy, clean and beautiful.

Ladies and gentlemen, it is a great honor to introduce to you the Volunteer of the Year for 2010, the Chairman of the Harrison County Solid Waste Authority, Mr. Michael Grunau (Grew-Now).