Featured Speakers

Chad Hymas, One of World’s Top Inspirational Speakers, To Address COMPOST2017

At the age of 27, the life of Chad Hymas changed instantaneously when an ignorant behavior-based safety attitude resulted in an accident which left him a quadriplegic. This led him to found RWS (Roll with Safety Legacy Companies) and Chad Hymas Communications.

Since that time Chad has been recognized by the state of Utah as the Superior Civilian of the Year. He has also been voted “Most Influential Safety Speaker in the World”, inducted into the Speaker Hall of Fame and been named “one of the world’s most inspiring individuals” by the Wall Street Journal.

Chad will inspire attendees of COMPOST2017 in the opening Keynote Plenary presentation focused on safety and leaving a legacy. Come to COMPOST2017 and leave with concrete leadership ideas that will remain with you from internationally renowned wheelchair athlete and motivational speaker Chad Hymas.

Learn more at chadhymas.com or rollwithsafety.com

Our educational sessions speakers include:

Ron Alexander, R. Alexander Associates, Inc.

Mr. Alexander has over 30 years of experience in all aspects of compost and other organic recycled product manufacturing, marketing and utilization. He has authored over 300 articles and presentations on organic recycled product marketing and utilization, and is the author of "˜The Practical Guide to Compost Marketing and Sales. Mr. Alexander is a past USCC Board member and the current Co-chair of the Market Development Committee. He is also the recipient of the USCC’s “Hi Kellogg Award for Outstanding Service to the Composting Industry", and it’s "Clean Water Award".
He will present, Compost and Phosphorous Regulation

Kevin Barnes, City of Bakersfield

He will present, “Canary in the Biomass Mine”

Timothy Bennett, Bennett Compost, Inc.

Tim Bennett is the owner and founder of Bennett Compost, Inc., the largest residential composting company in the Philadelphia region. Bennett Compost has won numerous awards for excellence including a “Best of Philly” award from Philadelphia Magazine and a “Sustainable Business of the Year” award from the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce.

He will present, Developing and Implementing a Residential Composting Program in a Major Urban Area: A Case Study of Bennett Compost in Philadelphia, PA

Johannes Biala, The Organic Force

He will present, The Need for Due Diligence in Assessing the Viability of Biochar

Tracie Bills, SCS Engineers

Tracie has over 20 years of materials management experience, including working for a hauler, a county government, a non-profit, and over 10 years with materials management consulting firms. She has provided zero waste strategies and technical expertise, visual and physical waste characterizations, organics infrastructure analysis and research, and recycling and waste management technical support to government agencies and businesses.

She will present, A small community, mandatory organics and politics: A Technology and Infrastructure Case Study

Allie Breyer, City of Eugene

Also speaking will be Jack Hoeck who has over 40 years of experience in the composting industry and has been instrumental in facilitating the Love Food Not Waste program.

Allie Breyer, Waste Prevention Analyst at the City of Eugene, has her Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Oregon and has experience working in environmental policy and planning issues in Oregon.

They will present, The Circular Economy in Action: City of Eugene’s Love Food Not Waste® Community Campaign

Louise Bruce, NYC Department of Sanitation

This series of presentations will be given by representatives of DSNY’s Bureau of Recycling and Sustainability, Operations Management Division, and Bureau of Solid Waste Management, each of which play an integral role in the development, implementation, and management of organics diversion initiatives. Bridget Anderson, Deputy Commissioner, Recycling and Sustainability. Bridget Anderson is responsible for the development and implementation of DSNY’s sustainability initiatives, with particular focus on waste reduction, recycling, and community composting programs. Ms. Anderson also oversees the rollout and expansion of participation in the city’s new organics collection program, which currently services over 700,000 New Yorkers in all five of the city’s Boroughs. Ms. Anderson serves on several national and regional committees on recycling, composting and sustainable material management through the Recycling Partnership Technical Council, Association of Postconsumer Plastics Recyclers, US Composting Council, ASTM International, among other initiatives. She has a Master of Public Administration degree from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, and a BA in geology and biology from Macalester College. Shari Pardini, Director Operations Management Division and Internal Audits and Thomas Killeen, Director, Solid Waste Management. Bios to follow soon!

They will present, From Curb to Compost: How the City of New York is Building an Organics Collection Program to Serve 8.5 Million People

Michel-BryanBrownMichael Bryan-Brown, Green Mountain Technologies

Mr. Bryan-Brown is a Civil/Environmental Engineer with experience in compost systems design, biosolids management and wastewater treatment design. He is president and founder of Green Mountain Technologies, a leading manufacturer of composting equipment in the U.S. Responsibilities include overall management of the company, product design and prototyping. He is holder of 3 U.S. patents in the field of composting and is the author of numerous papers.

He will present, Designing Aeration and Biofiltration Systems for Hot Arid Environments

Rick Buhr (Invited), American Biocarbon

He will present, “Biochar — An Alternative for Woody Biomass”

Bill Camarillo, Bill Camarillo

Bill Camarillo, CEO of Agromin, one of the largest organics recyclers in the United States, remains passionate after 24 years in the industry. He has played a key role in pioneering sustainability through organics conversion. Under his leadership, Agromin has received numerous awards including the California Resource Recovery Association’s “Leadership in Organics” and the US Composting Council’s 2008 “Composter of the Year.” He is a regular speaker on government regulations pertaining to organics.

He will present, How to Overcome Regulatory Fatigue and How are economics impacted by SSO? – Processing & end market perspective

David Crohn, UC Riverside

He will present, “Results of Current Biochar Research”

Debra C. Darby, Darby Marketing

Drawing on her experience with biopolymers, product end-of-life disposition and marketing, Debra has a proven ability to clearly communicate the value proposition of sustainable business practices. Formerly the director of brand and marketing communications with Metabolix, she manages an independent consultancy serving as key strategic advisor to clients including Organix Solutions, a company focused on organics recycling. She received a Master of Science degree in Work Environment/Cleaner Production from the University of Massachusetts Lowell.

She will present, Expanding Organic Waste Diversion in New England: An Analysis of a Military Installation Pilot Program

Christiana Darlington, Placer County Air Pollution Control District

She will present, “Overview of the Impacts of Biomass Energy Industry Changes and Dynamics”

Sen. Kevin De Leon (Invited), 24th Senate District – Central and East LA

He will present, “A Vision for Incorporating Environmental Justice to Support Organics Recycling and Reverse Climate Change”

Neil Edgar, Chair of USCC Legislative and Environmental Affairs Committee

He will present, “USCC’s Policy Agenda”

Dean Florez, ARB Board Member and Environmental Justice Representative to CARB

He will present, “Building the Organics Recycling Industry Using AB 1071 – Supplemental Environmental Projects”

Eva Fowler, ReFED

She will present, “ReFED Activities & successes proceeding the publication of the Roadmap”

Rob FriendRob Friend, SET
He will present, Compostable Food Service Items – Acceptable or Not?

Brian Fuchs, W. L. Gore & Associates

Brian is the North American Business Director at W. L. Gore & Associates for GORE® Cover technology and has been serving the environmental field for over 20 years. Brian’s experience includes project management, contracting, regulatory affairs and field testing, including pilot studies and full scale facility operations. Before joining Gore, Brian spent his time as a chemical application specialist in the drinking water and wastewater treatment industry. Brian did his undergraduate study at the New York Institute of Technology and received an MBA from the University of Delaware.

He will present, High versus Low Quality Compost: A Process Comparison for Composting Anaerobic Digestion Residuals

Jeff Gage, Green Mountain Technology

Jeff Gage is a traveling composter, currently living in Kigali, Rwanda and working on-line like most of you. Having permitted, operated, trouble-shot and visited hundreds of composting operations for a living over 26 years along the west coast and over the past 5 years traveling to 41 countries, Jeff has gained a valuable perspective on what is essential to the process and the bottom line. Jeff has help develop the USCC, WRAP and WORC Operator Training courses, made and sold close to a million cubic yards of compost, and saved several facilities from closure and designed many new facilities that customers are happy with. He speaks way too much and way too often at composting and recycling conferences, and should just shut up and listen. He loves this industry and has done his best to make it thrive.

He will present, Reduce Your Compost Facility Footprint and Do More Composting with Less Handling

Patrick Geraty, St. Louis Composting

He will present, It Could Happen to You

Nora Goldstein, BioCycle

She will present, Brief Economics of Community & Small-scale Composting. Hurdles to achieving scale

Matt Hayes, RDO Integrated Controls

He will present, Volumetric Measurements with UAVs


Louise Hénault-Ethier, Brome Composting Systems (Groupe Commercial Paul Larouche)

Louise Hénault-Ethier is a post-doc in organic waste entotechnology and holds an environmental sciences Ph.D. She planned mid-scale university systems (14 tonnes/year vermicomposting; 100 tonnes/year composting), documented best ICI and municipal composting practices for the Québec government, worked on composting in northern Canada and developing countries (Haiti, Senegal, Mali). She co-authored a 300 pages technical guide on on-site composting and two scientific papers on vermicomposting. She received numerous awards for composting projects and oratory talents.

She will present, On-Site Composting in Remote Camps: Benefits, Challenges and Accomplishments

Jack Hoeck, Rexius Forest By Products

Jack is Vice President of Production for Rexius Forest By-Products Inc. of Eugene, Oregon. He has been with the company for 40 years, and he was instrumental in developing the company’s yard debris recycling centers. Jack has worked with the City of Eugene to create the "Love Food Not Waste" program that provides opportunities to compost food waste from commercial businesses in the City of Eugene. Jack has over 30 years’ experience in the production of compost. He has served as a Board member for US Composting Council and held positions as Vice president and President. Jack currently serves as a commissioner for the USCC Certification Commission.

He will present, Understanding Biochar and how to use it

Matt de la Houssaye, Global Green

Matt serves as Director of Global Green’s Coalition or Resource Recovery. He leads Global Green’s work in developing and implementing waste diversion pilot programs with partner organizations. He holds a Master of Science in Environmental Management and Policy from the International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics (IIIEE) at Lund University, Sweden, and a dual BA in Economics and Environmental Studies from Emory University.

He will present, Food Scrap Diversion in Multi-Family Buildings: Results from LA and SF Bay Area Pilots

John JanesJohn Janes, Caterpillar, Inc.

He will present, Calculating the True Cost of Equipment

Kathryn Kellogg Johnson, Kellogg Garden Products

Kathryn Kellogg Johnson of Kellogg Garden Products is interested in the impact of Kellogg operations on the environment. Kathy has developed and managed the business towards a goal of sustainability and regenerative practices. She leads the effort toward environmental integrity, including the purchase of ingredients, the development of new products, energy efficiency in operations, meeting recycling goals, and re-purposing materials for their highest and best use. As "Historian", she is involved in telling the 90 year story of the company’s commitment to sustainable practices.

Kathy’s passion for educating people on recycling, composting and gardening led to her involvement on the Corporate Board of Advisors for Hollywood’s Environmental Media Association (EMA). She has taught school children and adults about the natural and organic methods of gardening and learned alongside subsistence farmers in TZ, Burundi, Congo, and Oaxaca how to restore their soils, their lives, their community and dignity through the non-profit group Plant with Purpose. Kathy is a founding member of ACP.

She will present, Creating One Voice

Scott Kerr, Harvest Power

Scott Kerr is involved in many aspects of Harvest Power’s operations with a particular focus on odor management and monitoring. He is a certified stack sampler and has spent copious amounts of time in the field with various odor monitoring tools. Mr. Kerr also manages emissions monitoring. His education is in ecology and his professional background is varied, from field research to project management, science communication and community engagement.

He will present, Measurable Benefits from Behind-the-Scenes Maintenance

Mark King, Maine Department of Environmental Protection

Mark holds a Bachelors of Arts in biology from the University of Maine and a Masters in zoology from Southern Illinois University and has served as Maine DEP’s compost expert for the last 23 years. Additionally, he serves as Director and lead faculty for the Maine Compost School. Mark provides on-going technical assistance to new and existing compost facilities through compost facility design, operations assistance and compost process trouble-shooting. He has worked with all levels of compost facility size and design, and has developed an expertise with medium and large- scale facilities.

He will present, Using Active Biosolids Compost to Manage Poultry Mortalities, an Evaluation of The USDA Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Mortality Composting Protocols

Jeremy Kline, City of Manteca-Solid Waste Division

My career in solid waste has been centered around recycling and organics for 4 years. My new focus is on biogas generation and food recycling.

He will present, “The Straight Dish on Food Recycling in the City of Manteca”

Craig Kolodge, Filtrexx International

He will present, “Stormwater Regulation Relief with Compost”

Brian Langolf, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh

Brian graduated in 2004 with an M.S. in microbiology. Upon graduation he worked as a research scientist at Kimberly Clark Corporation. He has been working at the university for the past 6 year where he currently serves as the director of the Biogas Program. During his time at Oshkosh he has given many presentations around the US describing their efforts in the area of sustainability, renewable energy, anaerobic digestion, organic diversion and composting.

He will present, Combining Composting and Anaerobic Digestion for Project Success

Montae Lawson, Veteran Compost

He will present, From Crab Feast to Compost – Composting at the World’s Largest Crab Feast

Pierce Louis, Dirt Hugger

Pierce Louis is a co-founder at Dirt Hugger, a composting company with located in Dallesport, WA. At Dirt Hugger, Pierce focuses on business development, marketing and finance, but leaving time to run loaders and screen compost.. He received a BA from University of Virginia and an MBA from Oxford.

He will present, The Cost of Contamination and High-tech, Low Cost: Design, Construction, & Commissioning of a 26,000 TPY ASP facility

Dr. Joseph K. Lyou (Invited), Coalition for Clean Air

He will present, “Building Sustainable Communities by Promoting Broad-Based Community Involvement “

Norma McDonald, OWS, Inc.

Norma McDonald joined OWS in 2009 as North American Sales Manager after owning/operating her own AD company for five years. OWS provides turnkey AD facilities as well as laboratory and consulting services for biodegradability, compostability and environmental fates. She has been involved with the USCC since its inception in 1992, when at Procter & Gamble working on biodegradable diapers. In addition to USCC, Norma is a board member of the American Biogas Council, and serves on several committees and working groups.

She will present, Innovations in Combining AD and Compost Production

Will McHenry, San Diego Food Bank

He will present, “Food Bank Addresses AB 1826 by Composting – Challenges of a Major Food Waste Generator Moving to Zero Waste”

Jonthan Meronek, SCS Engineers

He will present, “Compost Operations and Stormwater Management: Navigating the Complex Waterscape of California’s new Water Quality Regulations including a look at General Waste Discharge Requirements (WDRs) and their Potential Interaction with the new Industrial General Permit (IGP).”

JorgeJorge Montezuma, NC Department of Environmental Quality

Jorge Montezuma, Engineer-In-Training, is the Organics Recycling Specialist for the NC Department of Environmental Quality, he provides non-regulatory technical assistance to organic waste generators and processors and serves as the board secretary for the NC Composting Council. His work experience is a blend of solid waste engineering, international sustainable development, and community building. Jorge holds engineering degrees from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo and NC State University.

He will present, Studying Organics Recycling in NC

Tim O'neillTim O’Neill, Engineered Compost Systems

Tim is president and founder of ECS and a USCC Certified Compost Facility Operator.

He received his BS and MS in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Washington way back in the 1980’s. He has worked as an engineer, inventor and entrepreneur in the composting industry since 1992. During that time he has developed numerous long-term relationships supplying technical support and equipment to some of the leading composting facilities in North America and beyond. His professional passion is combining science-based inquiry and practical lessons to help large-scale composters find commercial and operational success.

He will present, Using a Flexible Pilot to Optimize Performance of an Aerated Composting System

Clarke Pauley (Invited), CR&R Environmental Services

He will present, “AD Serving Food Scrap Generators (AB 1826) with Organics Recycling”

Waylon Pleasanton, Sustainable Generation, LLC

He will present, Best Management Practices for Food Waste and Biosolids ASP Facilities

Colum Riley, Malibu Compost LLC

Colum Riley got his start in compost at a very young age growing up on a biodynamic farm in Pennsylvania. In 2009 he co-founded Malibu Compost, a premium packaged compost and soil amendment company with sales in 23 states and a loyal following. Colum has spoken at the USCC Conference, National Biodynamic Conference, the National Heirloom Expo, San Francisco Flower & Garden Show, The Emerald Cup, Living Soils Symposium, Cultivation Classic and more.

He will present, Compost and Cannabis: A Match Made in Legalization

Susan Robinson, Waste Management, Inc

Senior Public Affairs Director at WM. 30 years in the industry, including public sector, non-profit, consultancy, and over twenty years in the private sector. Experience in global commodity marketing, research and analysis of industry trends, and twenty years managing municipal solid waste and recycling contracts. Currently responsible for WM’s public policy efforts around recycling, organics management, natural gas and new technologies. Speaker at conferences across the country on recycling, lifecycle thinking and goal-setting.

She will present, What is the Goal? Using Lifecycle Thinking to Create Environmental Programs

Ashley Conrad Saydah, CA Air Resources Board

She will present, “New Climate Policy and How it Impacts Biomass Carbon Management”

Andrew Schlesinger, Elijah’s Promise

Andrew and Anthony (Elijah’s Promise) are merging their backgrounds in environmental studies, landscape architecture, and urban planning to collaborate on Promise Compost: New Jersey’s first community compost project demonstrating and engaging residents in all steps of the compost process. Presenters fuse experience in site design, food systems planning, community outreach initiatives, and grant writing skills to cultivate a project that innovates and expands the capacities of composting in their state.

He will present, Pioneering Community Compost in the Garden State

Kelly Schoonmaker, StopWaste

Kelly Schoonmaker manages StopWaste’s compost and mulch market development program, where she has been educating landscape professionals about the value of healthy soil since 2010. She provides technical assistance on specifying and using compost to landscape architects, contractors and maintenance professionals, as well as home gardeners and public agencies. A licensed landscape architect, she is a proud graduate of the USCC’s Compost Operations Training Course and a board member of the California Organics Recycling Council.

She will present, Food Policy Councils Promote Community Composting

Iesha Siler, Los Angeles Food Policy Council

She will present, “Growing your Urban Market for Compost with Lawn Conversions, Water-Efficient Landscapes, and More!” and How Food Policy Councils Can Play a Role to Assist Local Jurisdictions Meet Organic Waste Diversion Goals

James Slaughter, Beveridge & Diamond, P.C

James has litigated cases and advised clients regarding land application and composting of biosolids for over twenty years. He has argued and tried cases regarding biosolids in courtrooms across the country.

He will present, The Legal Landscape for Compost — Opportunities and Obstacles

Matthew Smith, University of New Hampshire

Matthew has a strong background in presenting compost research that ranges from policy settings (NH State Legislature, USDA Climate Hub, Sustainable Farm Energy Production and Use Committee) to research/industry-based conferences at universities (Cornell, Rutgers, UVM, UNH, Great Bay College). He has also presented compost research to farm & garden organizations (Northeast Organic Farming Association, Northeast Pasture Consortium, and NH Federation of Garden Clubs).

He will present, Heat Recovery from Composting: Past, Present, and Future

Rod Tyler, Filtrexx International

He will present, What are the economic opportunity for value-added, premium compost products?

Sarah Vared, ReFED

Sarah Vared is a Principal at MissionPoint Partners, an impact investment advisor and manager. In her role at MissionPoint, Sarah currently acts as the Interim Director of ReFED, a national non-profit focused on reducing food waste through data and multi-stakeholder collaboration. She was responsible for designing, fundraising for, and implementing the ReFED Roadmap to Reduce US Food Waste and continues to drive the project in its 2016 – 2017 activities. At MissionPoint Partners, Sarah’s portfolio includes expertise in investments related to sustainability, agriculture, efficiency, and resilience.

She will present, ReFED Activities & successes proceeding the publication of the Roadmap

Andre Villasenor, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Andre Villasenor has served at the Environmental Protection Agency since 2005 where he coordinates sustainable materials management programs. In the last 18 months, he has given twenty-seven presentations at conferences, workshops and webinars on topics including organics diversion, green purchasing, and federal sustainability. Prior to EPA, Mr. Villasenor served in the U.S. Peace Corps in Ecuador as a Habitat Conservation Specialist. He holds an M.S. in Environmental Science and an M.A. in International Environmental Policy.

He will present, Leveraging EPA’s FOOD Mapping Tool to Recover Wasted Food

Jeff West, Olympic Organics LLC

Jeff West is President of Olympic Organics and New Day Recycling. With 29 years in the solid waste and recycling industry he first presented at Waste Expo in 1990. Since that time he has presented at various conferences. Most recently he has presented on issues relating to composting at the 2016 USCC in Jacksonville and Washington State Recycling Association Annual Conference in Wenatchee WA.

He will present, The Future of Compostability Standards: The Compost Manufacturers’ Perspective

Annie White, District of Columbia

She will present, Political Economy of Food Waste Collection & Organics Recovery

Todd Williams, CH2M

Mr. Williams has a 36-year career in environmental engineering with operating and design experience and specific emphasis in composting, residuals and biosolids management. Mr. Williams has authored over 150 publications and presentations on residuals management and is a contributing author for several books significant to biosolids and residuals management, composting, and odor control. Todd is an engineering graduate of Virginia Tech and is the past Chair of the Water Environment Federation’s Residuals and Biosolids Committee. Todd works out of CH2M’s Richmond, Virginia office where he serves as CH2M’s Global Wastewater Technology Practice Deputy Leader.

He will present, Development of a Successful Composting Program in Kodiak, Alaska

Tom Wright, Sustainable Business Practices

He will present, Food Waste in a Circular Economy Concept/Innovation

Jeff Ziegenbein, IERCF

Jeff Ziegenbein is Vice President of the US Composting Council and President of the California Association of Compost Producers. He’s been in the organics industry for 30 years and is the Project Manager of the largest enclosed composting facility in North America. He’s responsible for operations, maintenance, sales and administration.

He will present, Inland Empire’s Composting Facility Adopts to Changing Market Conditions