Brad Mertz – Executive Director, RCU / Recycling Coalition of Utah
Brad Mertz has worked in the solid waste and recycling industries for nearly 10 years. Brad has been involved with the Recycling Coalition of Utah since its early years serving as the Executive Director or on the Board of Directors.
He has worked in the private sector with BFI/ Allied Waste/ Republic Services as their market development manager. This position included business development and public sector management. During his time at Republic, Brad was responsible for increasing Republic’s residential contracts from less than 10 to 24 cities in Utah alone.
Brad has been involved in a number of programs with Utah communities including drop-off programs, (Moab, Bountiful) to curbside recycling programs (Salt Lake City, Summit County, Ogden, Park City, West Jordan, South Jordan, and others) and curbside trash collection (West Jordan, Park City, Summit County, Clearfield, Centerville, Murray, and a majority of communities in Utah County. Other work has included involvement with Provo City and West Jordan in their curbside green-waste collection programs.
Some of the organizations Brad has worked for on waste reduction, recycling and composting projects include the Salt Lake Organizing Committee (SLOC), Clean Event, Sundance Resort, Deseret Industries, Moab City, Provo City, and Logan City. Mr. Mertz has spoken to the majority of Utah City Councils and County Commissions on recycling and waste related issues throughout the State of Utah. Brad was a part passing of the original Utah Recycling Market Development Zone legislation in Utah. He has been involved in other successful Utah recycling legislation as well.
Mr. Mertz received his Master of Public Administration and Bachelor of Science degrees from Brigham Young University. Brad and his wife Shauna, are the parents of four children. His interests include sports, especially golfing, skiing, dirt biking and scuba diving.
Brad Morley – Past President, RCU
Brad Morley as served on the RCU Board as our President from 2010 to 2018 and has done a fantastic job at helping the board with his duties.
Brad works in the recycling industry at TAMS, providing computer and electronic recycling and reuse.
Beau Peck – President RCU, Director of Marketing & Zero Waste Services
Beau is the Director of Marketing & Zero Waste Services for Interwest Paper, Inc – a Utah based recycling company specializing in business recycling and marketing a variety of materials from recycling centers in the West. Interwest Paper is part of the Pro Recycling Group, a group of companies compromised of Interwest Paper, Pro Baler Services (equipment – service – and sales), and Pro Polymers (Plastic recycling for Post Industrial Scrap). All companies act as one, so the group is a very versatile company with services covering a wide range of areas in the Recycling Industry. Beau is the local area representative for Wyoming, Southern Utah and SE Idaho. Beau is always on the road traveling, installing equipment and improving recycling programs for rural communities.
Beau lives in West Jordan, UT, and is in a third generation of family businesses in the Waste and Recycling industry. He appreciates the opportunity to serve on the board of RCU and believes that recycling is the answer, and will do anything to promote the cause.
Scott Epperson. – Commercial Buyer / Western Metals Recycling
Scott is with Western Metals Recycling and is based at their headquarters in Salt Lake City.
Craig Castle – Founder – Owner / Innovative Waste Solutions
Craig is the founder of Innovative Waste Solutions, a waste and recycling consulting company based in Orem, UT. The primary goal of IWS is to help companies large and small improve existing, or implement new waste and recycling programs. IWS mainly helps companies along the Wasatch front, but has helped customers from Washington to Arizona to Oklahoma. If there is a way to improve waste and recycling within an organization, IWS will find a way.
Craig enjoys spending time with family doing anything outdoors from snow skiing, to waterskiing and motorcycling to mountain biking.
Scott Simar – Director of Business Development / Pro Baler Services, Inc.
Scott Simar is the Lead Account Representative with Pro Baler Services, the Pro Recycling Group. He is a wide range of skills for recycling equipment needs, and for recycling services for many manufacturers, recycling centers and zero landfill accounts.
Scott is enthusiastic about recycling and is the board chairman for the Events Committee for RCU.
Robert Watson – CEO and VP of Human Resources/Business Development / WSI Trash and Recycling Valet
Rob is the CEO and VP of Human Resources/Business Development of WSI Trash and Recycling Valet, a company that provides trash and recycling pick up door side in multi-family communities. The valet service provides convenient recycling for people who, in many cases, would not have the opportunity to recycle. WSI provides recycling to 100% of our multi-family community customers. WSI also provides on going education to our customers to help them learn what can and cannot go into their recycling bin. WSI also runs a small material recovery facility where we bale recyclables to deliver to larger material recovery facilities.
Rob lives in Murray, Utah and is one of the founders of WSI. He has served on the RCU board since 2016, and enjoys working on important issues involving recycling in Utah.
WSI Trash and Recycling Valet: PO Box 57121, Salt Lake City, UT 84157
Larry Gibbons – Managing Senior Partner / Rocky Mountain Document Destruction
Email Larry at email@example.com
Larry Gibbons grew up in Holladay, Utah, where he learned the value of hard work at a young age. After maintaining a newspaper route, he developed a business idea to buy things and resale them for a profit. Larry purchased and sold many things, but specialized in dirt bikes and other recreational vehicles. While still in his teens, he learned the importance of buy low and sell high and supply and demand.
After high school, Larry attended Dixie State University and then committed two years to serve as a missionary for his church. Upon returning from his mission service, Larry attended college at BYU Idaho.
Before starting in the document destruction business, Larry had served several different roles in the waste and recycling field. He began with BFI in 1995 as a territory sales rep and worked his way up to a regional sales manager position working out of Scottsdale, Arizona. After 13 years in the waste business, Larry moved to the recycling side. He enjoyed saving people money through diversion efforts and making the world a better place by reducing waste. Seeing an opportunity to expand his business, Larry and three partners started Rocky Mountain Document Destruction in 2012. This business has had double-digit growth since the first year and continues to be a solution for document destruction throughout Utah.
To gain knowledge and experience about the shredding industry, Larry Gibbons completed coursework at The Shred School taught by Ray Berry. The Shred School teaches the document destruction basics and provides the National Association of Information Destruction (NAID) certification. NAID is the governing body that holds shredding companies accountable for sensitive document destruction. Companies agree to random background checks, drug tests, and a very detailed auditing process with the NAID certification. RMDD has to re-qualify every year for this certification.
One of the benefits Larry has enjoyed with this business is involving the whole family. He has taken every one of the kids to do shred jobs and helps them earn summer money by cleaning out recycling cans. His wife is involved in the day-to-day business and contributes time, insights, and effort.
Kristine Watson – President and CFO / Secretary Treasurer RCU / WSI Trash and Recycling Valet
Kris started her career in the dental field as a Registered Dental Hygienist. She greatly enjoyed working in the dental field but was excited for a new opportunity when she was offered the chance to start a company with her family.
Kris and her husband Rob started WSI of Utah in 2010, and it has since grown to include several family members. Working with family can be a challenge, but the rewards far exceed the challenges. WSI is a trash and recycling valet company that primarily works with multi-family communities. Kris is passionate about the recycling aspect of WSI Trash and Recycling Valet and serves on the board of directors for the Recycling Coalition of Utah.
WSI includes recycling at no extra charge with all of their trash valet subscriptions because WSI understands the importance of recycling. Kris recently graduated from the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program where she learned valuable information to assist in managing the day-to-day operations of the business.
Kris enjoys getting to know people and helping others learn to recycle. She also enjoys running and has completed 2 marathons. You may not have a clue about this one due to her calm nature but Kris also holds a 3rd degree Black Belt in Karate and enjoys serving the community by voluntarily assisting teaching Martial Arts with her husband Rob.
Rhi Gardner – Recycling Coordinator / Salt Lake Community College
Rhi Gardner is the Recycling Coordinator for Salt Lake Community College. The College’s recycling mission is to manage recyclable waste, emphasizing the importance of recycling over solid waste disposal. Rhi accomplishes this mission by utilizing recycling as a teaching instrument to provide a clean, safe, and efficient recycling program.
Josie Showalter – CDBG/ Grant Administrator / Millcreek City
Josie Showalter graduated from BYU with a bachelor’s degree in music with a vocal emphasis and completed a master’s degree in public administration from SUU in December 2021. She has worked for the public sector and non-profits for the past 10 years. Josie currently works for Millcreek in the Finance Department as the CDBG/Grants Administrator and handles sustainability efforts at Millcreek. As part of the Finance Department, Josie writes and manages many of the grants Millcreek applies for and leads Millcreek’s internal sustainability efforts. For the past three years, she aided Millcreek staff in getting over 8 million dollars in funding. A fun fact about Josie is that she is also a member of the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square.
Ryan Smith – CEO / Recyclops
Ryan is BYU graduate with a degree in business strategy and the father of two little girls. He is passionate about making recycling accessible in communities that historically have struggled to recycle. At Recyclops, Ryan is working to bring recycling to rural communities and to multi-family housing tenants across the country.
Ryan is the CEO of Recyclops, a recycling company specializing in collection of Rural Recycling that is moving towards nationwide services.
Ryan is a Forbes 30 Under 30 Award Winner.
McKenna Tupai– Sustainability Coordinator / Wasatch Front Waste & Recycling District
McKenna first came to Utah to pursue a graduate degree in Environmental Humanities at the University of Utah. There she studied the relationships between human and nature with an emphasis on sustainable food systems.
From there McKenna began her career working with Big Brothers Big Sisters as a program coordinator. She loved working within the community but wanted to give back in a way that related more to her graduate degree. McKenna merged her two passions of workingwithin the community and sustainability and decided to join the waste management and recycling field.
McKenna joined Wasatch Front Waste and Recycling District as the Sustainability Coordinator in January of 2022. Wasatch Front Waste & Recycling District serves multiple municipalities throughout the Wasatch Front with the mission to provide sustainable integrated waste and recycling collection services for the health and safety of our community… because not everything fits in the can. McKenna has loved transitioning into the waste management field. As the Sustainability Coordinator McKenna’s role is to educate the community on sustainable waste practices such as reducing waste consumption, recycling, composting, etc. McKenna has had the opportunity to engage with the community on multiple levels. McKenna works in elementary schools giving presentations, has attended community events, and works with City and Community Councils.
Outside of waste management, McKenna enjoys playing volleyball. McKenna played Division 1 volleyball at the University of Hawai’i where she received her undergraduate degree. As she transitioned out of the student-athlete life, McKenna was able develop new passions in arts and crafts! A big welcome to McKenna! We are priviledged and excited to have you on the RCU board!
Blake Leoneli – Public Sector Manager / VP RCU / Waste Management
Blake is responsible for developing and administering public sector contracts for solid waste collection and disposal services and recycling programs throughout the Rocky Mountain Region. He coordinates with municipal customers to identify needs, develop solutions, implements effective strategies and maintains strong relationships. Blake has 18 years of government relations work. Prior to Waste Management Blake worked to help fortune 500 companies identify economic development incentives to strengthen current and future areas of enhancements to an organizations overall EBIT.
Email Blake at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ashlee Cawley – Municipal Contract Administrator / Republic Services
Ashlee is a municipal contract administrator for Republic Services, an industry leader in US recycling and non-hazardous solid waste disposal and removal. Her professional responsibilities include, but are not limited to, administration over residential contracts and promoting responsible recycling practices in Utah. Ashlee returned to her home state of Utah in 2019, after receiving her master’s degree in international relations with political strategy and communication from the University of Kent in Brussels, Belgium. Ashlee’s passion for innovative recycling strategies developed over years of working in international environments and observing the common need for forward-thinking waste solutions—from residing in China, Rwanda, South Korea, and beyond. Ashlee is an alumnus of Weber State University, where she was awarded the prestigious Crystal Crest “Woman of the Year” award in 2014.
She is thrilled to participate in RCU and coordinate with other supporters of recycling in Utah.
Jessica Thacker – Education and Outreach Coordinator / Program Manager / Canyonlands Solid Waste Authority
Jessica is the Education and Outreach Coordinator and Program Manager for the Solid Waste Special Service District #1 (d/b/a Canyonlands Solid Waste Authority) in Moab, Utah. CSWA manages the Canyonlands Transfer Station, Moab Community Recycle Center, and two (2) landfills. Jessica has been in the waste and recycling industry for almost 3 years with over 7 years of experience in environmental remediation. She graduated from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with an undergraduate degree in Geology. Ms. Thacker focuses on developing and implementing educational programs as well as organizing sustainability-minded special events that reduce overall waste and discourages recycling contamination in Moab’s unique tourism-based industry. She also works to provide tailored recycling training to private businesses, volunteers for a variety of community events, and establish positive working relationships with local governmental entities. Ms. Thacker is excited to be a member of the RCU Board with the opportunity to collaborate with like-minded individuals.
Off the clock, Jessica spends her time enjoying a wide variety of hobbies such as gardening and homesteading, antique shopping, four-wheeling, and sewing. She has lived in Moab since 2019 with her partner, three cats, one dog, two chickens, and one very sassy ball python.