Name: Brad Dunn
Title: Recycling Operations Manager, Cincinnati Market
How long have you worked at Rumpke? 17 years
What are some of your job duties? It’s my job to make sure our Cincinnati recycling plant operates well, produces quality materials and does it all in a safe manner. I also have responsibilities regarding budgeting, planning, scheduling, compliance, maintenance, equipment purchasing and overseeing all work processes related to the Cincinnati plant.
Watch Brad explain how recyclables are sorted with this video .
What is one of your favorite work experiences? The experience that really stands out for me occurred on April 10, 2012. It was one of the most devastating days, and one of my proudest moments as an employee of Rumpke. On that day, a fire devastated our Cincinnati operation. It was amazing to see the way this company came together. Within hours a plan was devised to collect, transfer, and process all of the Cincinnati materials. Nearly every division and every market jumped in to help however they could. That, to me, showed the high level of dedication this company has to servicing the needs of our customers and made me extremely proud to be a part of the Rumpke team.
Watch the construction begin on Cincinnati's new recycling plant.
How has Rumpke positioned itself as a leader in recycling or environmental stewardship? As recycling has changed, so has Rumpke. We have made huge investments in our plants to be on the cutting edge of technology. We’re doing great things at our landfills too by recovering the gas generated by decomposing trash and using it to power collection trucks, or heat homes. We also continue to place a high value on educating the public about what we do and the important role people can play as every day environmentalists.
During an Ask Rumpke segment, Brad answers commonly asked questions about recycling.
How do you promote recycling? I believe it is important to get our youth involved with recycling as early as possible. About 10 years ago I created our Recycling Mascot “Binny.“ Since then Binny has made thousands of appearances at schools, churches, festivals, sporting events, you name it. I also work with the Cincinnati Reds as the volunteer coordinator for the Green Guardians program at Great American Ballpark. Participants receive free admission to Reds games by volunteering their time during the 7th inning stretch collecting recycling from the fans. Volunteers just need to e-mail me and I can get them signed up.
Watch Binny prepare for his numerous events during Spring Training.
Why is recycling important? The easy answer is to protect our environment and reduce the strain on our limited natural resources. What folks may not know is that in Ohio recycling is a $10 billion per year industry. Recycling creates jobs not only in recycling plants but as examples, at paper mills, plastics processors, steel companies and fiberglass plants. This then leads to jobs that support those industries as well. Recycling really is a winner for our environment and our economy.
What do you tell people who say recycling is not important? First thing I’ll say is, “Let me give you a tour of our plant.” I want to show people the huge amounts of materials that we keep out of landfills every day. Saying 500 tons per day may not sound like a lot, but when you see it first hand and then calculate that 500 tons equals one million pounds, it usually starts to sink in. I also like to demonstrate how useful the products are that are manufactured from recycled materials and how prevalent they are in products we use every single day.
Rumpke provides free tours of landfill and recycling facilities. Learn more.
About the author: Darby Fledderjohn was the summer 2013 corporate communications intern at Rumpke.