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  • Lars Lawson

May 2014

Updated: Sep 15, 2021

IRC Logo Web PNG

Dear Friends,

We are pleased to share a host of news about the board, legislative efforts and more.


Our Board of Directors for the coming year will be installed at the June 4, annual meeting during our annual conference.  At that time we look forward to welcoming new members Natalie Roberts from the Monarch Charitable Foundation and Craig Lutz from Republic Services.  Earlier this year we also welcomed David Vonnegut-Gabovitch from the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis.  At the annual meeting we will also welcome the following officers:  Cassie Stockamp – President, Greg Spratt – Vice President, Stacey Boggs – Secretary and David Vonnegut-Gabovitch – Treasurer.  Thanks to our entire Board of Directors for their dedicated service to the IRC!


On April 30, I was thrilled to represent the IRC as the Governor signed HEA 1183, establishing a new 50% state recycling goal, recycling data collection requirements and a legislative review of policy solutions to help achieve the new goal.  We look forward to continuing our work with the legislature in the coming months, considering policy priorities for the 2015 session and beyond.


Our conference is quickly approaching, and we hope you will attend!  We have pulled together an impressive list of speakers, exhibitors and fun networking opportunities for this annual event – Indiana’s largest gathering of recycling interests from business/industry, government, education and the community at large.


Over the last few months we’ve hired two top-notch professionals.  Rachel Morris is our new Marketing and Events Coordinator. Rachel and her husband Justin moved to Indianapolis from New York City in 2011 with hopes of living a simpler and more green lifestyle. Rachel also wanted to start a career that would directly help her community. Her non-profit experience started at Meals on Wheels of Central Indiana where she served as Marketing Director.  Rachel is very excited to be with IRC, continuing her passion for green living and improving her community.

Danni McPherron, our new Program and Events Coordinator joined the IRC in early January, soon after graduating from IU Bloomington with a degree in Environmental Management and Spanish. Danni has always had a passion for green issues, previously interning at both Keep Indianapolis Beautiful and the IU Office of Sustainability. Danni looks forward to making recycling convenient and accessible to all Hoosiers.

We are thrilled to welcome Rachel and Danni to the team!

Sustainably yours,


Carey Hamilton

Executive Director

New Feature!

Jim has been a strong and steady voice within the coalition throughout his years of service.  He was a leader of the IRC’s successful electronics recycling campaign which culminated in the passage of Indiana’s 2009 e-waste law.

More recently, Jim has been instrumental in the IRC’s evolution from a grassroots organization to a professionally staffed and managed organization, an important step forward that many non-profits struggle to make.

Jim has over twenty years experience in managing or owning small business operations.  He has managed corporate contracts for the federal government as well as state and local entities. In 1999, Mr. Parker purchased the regional operations of Planergy Inc.  Jim’s company is now called NuGenesis, Inc., which specializes in the disposal of appliances, hazardous and household hazardous wastes, pharmaceuticals, electronics and tires.  NuGenesis serves primarily as a transporter and broker of materials headed for final disposal or recycling. NuGenesis provides services primarily in Indiana.

Jim’s experience also include 7 years managing solid waste management districts, 4 years as Project Manager of Planergy, current Owner of NuGenesis and 9 years on the Board of the National Recycling Coalition.

On behalf of the IRC Board and Staff we extend our thanks to Jim for his many years of service to the IRC, helping us to work effectively towards our goals, while always ensuring we had some fun along the way!

Click here to read more about our 2014 annual conference.  

to see confirmed exhibitors (updated 5/6/14).

Still looking for recycling bins? Look no further!

Launched in early 2013, our Bins for Schools program has helped thousands of Indiana students gain access to recycling.

The process for getting the bins is simple:  Fill out the application!

Once your application is submitted, we will follow-up with you to arrange a pick-up time in Indianapolis.  The IRC asks that you please submit photos and stories to Danni once the program has been implemented.

Need more help getting your schools excited about recycling?

Try participating in the Recycle-Bowl Competition and use a bit of friendly competition to motivate your students to adopt sustainable practices!

Click here to apply to receive bins for your school.

The Bins for Schools program has been made possible through a generous donation from Eli Lilly.

recycle mania

Congratulations to our 2014 Indiana RecycleMania winners!

Top Prize to Purdue!

Purdue University, West Lafayette campus took home the Grand Champion category, with a 39.44% recycling rate campuswide!

Here are results from the other categories:

  1. Purdue University, West Lafayette Campus: Grand Champion, Gorilla, and Food Service Organics

  2. University of Southern Indiana: Per Capita Classic

  3. Indiana State University: Waste Minimization, Paper, Corrugated Cardboard, and Bottles and Cans

Visit the RecycleMania website for more information on the 2014 winners and to learn how you can participate in 2015.

Mikki Jeffers, Executive Director of Howard County Recycling District, far left

Mikki is a longtime member, and very active in promoting recycling.

Both the 2012 and 2013 Recycle-Bowl Indiana winners were from Howard County, so we asked Mikki about her success in promoting the program to her District. Learn her secrets below! 

  1. Out of the 29 participating Indiana schools, 21 of them were located in your District. How have you been able to get the schools in your District so involved with Recycle-Bowl?

  2. Not only have your schools been highly involved, but also extremely successful, with the 2013 Recycle-Bowl National winner located in your District. What do you think has been the key to their success?

  3. What are the 3 elements that are key to any successful Recycle-Bowl or recycling campaign?

Communication is key:

1.     The schools were really open to the idea of recycling in their schools. Some of them had no idea that their school was already participating when we approached the corporations. It all started with a call from a parent because their child was upset that the paper was thrown in the trash. That created a snowball effect. I spoke with the principal and asked to set up recycling for one classroom. After approval, I had the entire elementary school on board a week later. The teacher that initially called began chatting with her neighbor (who was also a teacher in a different school corporation) told her about how easy it was to participate. Then, that teacher called and said she wanted to do it in her classroom as well. The added involvement changed our program workload from a part-time guy in a F-150 truck to 2 full-time employees and two 16-foot box trucks.

Since the schools recycle all year long and have for several years, I put them in the competition without hesitation. KAB sends out info promoting the competition which we forward out to the schools. I honestly don’t think they really know when the competition is going on until it hits the hallways with flyers. The staff and students are instinctively recycling throughout the year.

“Make it easy”:

2.     The key is that you can’t make school staff do all the work. Make it EASY for the staff and students to participate. This should be a student-involved program and as long as you have a good advocate to head it up, it’s pretty easy. Use plenty of containers throughout the schools and LOTS of signage.

Promote and Congratulate:

3.     Promotion of the program is valuable if you have the funds. However, if program budgets are cut like ours were, try using social media as well as word of mouth throughout the school. Our drivers use positive reinforcement to the staff/students at the schools when they are picking up materials by letting them know weight totals. Also the drivers know the program and what it entails. I like to hold competitions with the schools to see who can recycle the most – like middle school against middle school and have a “traveling” award that they can display for the month, then whomever wins the following month the award will go to their school. It is a one-time expense for the award; however, the school has bragging rights forever.

Less work for the school staff. They have enough to deal with- this is about the students and their recycling efforts with their maturing process. The kids who are now seniors have been recycling in their schools since they were in the third grade. They have been recycling half their life. We hope they take these ‘habits’ into their college years as well as their home lives if they haven’t already.

Know an IRC member that should be praised?

Drop us a line, and we’ll highlight them in a future newsletter!

Plastic film is thin polyethylene plastic used for wraps, packaging, or commercial/retail use bags.  It’s sometimes called stretch film or shrink film.  Polyethylene (PE) film may carry a #2 HDPE or #4 LDPE mark.

What type of film is recyclable?

Most clean and dry plastic films and bags are 100% recyclable at participating retail and local drop-off locations.

What happens to my bags and wraps after they’re recycled?

Plastic bags are recycled into many different products. Most bags and film are turned into composite lumber, but they can be reprocessed into small pellets or post consumer resin, which can be used to make a variety of new products, such as new bags, pallets, containers, crates and pipe.

What should I put in the collection bin?

Some of the most common examples are shown at above. Also, any bag or wrap with the How2Recycle label shown below can be put in the bin. If plastic film stretches when you pull it with your fingers, it’s okay to recycle it.

Why can’t I put my bags in my curbside bin/cart?

While a few municipalities accept bags and wraps in their curbside collection programs, most do not. That’s because the bags/films can jam sorting machinery, creating problems for the recyclers. Additionally, bags and wraps have to be clean and dry to be recycled, and collecting them in curbside bins with bottles and containers generally leaves them too dirty and wet to be recycled.

Where should I take the bags and film for recycling?

Please take your bags, films, and wraps to a participating retailer or drop-off location. You may enter your zip code in the film drop off directory to find locations near you.

Why can’t frozen food or prewashed salad bags go into the bin with my carryout bags?

Many of these bags may contain a barrier polymer or other additives that is other than the polyethylene (#’s 2 and 4) plastic that recyclers want. These polymer barriers help protect the food and extend shelf life, but recyclers consider them to be a contaminant in the recycling bin.

What if it says it’s degradable AND recyclable?

Currently, these bags cannot be placed in drop-off bins. The recyclers reprocessing bags don’t want the products they make to degrade over time, so these bags are not acceptable.

Can I recycle it if…

  1. The plastic is colored?  YES. Colored material is not a problem for recycling.

  2. It tears like paper? NO. This type of plastic is currently not accepted in bag recycling bins.

  3. It crinkles loudly (like candy wrappers or chip bags) when I mash it in my hand? NO. Please do not include, as it is not currently acceptable for recycling.

  4. It has labels or tape? YES, but labels, tape, and adhesive strips SHOULD BE REMOVED prior to putting it in the recycling bin. The integrity of the bag isn’t important-the recycler just wants the clean plastic.

  5. It is thicker, stiff plastic like pet food bags or bedding bags (including anything with a zipper)? NO. These are not the same type of plastic as what recyclers want, so DO NOT include.

  6. It is dirty, has crumbs, or is wet? NO. Recyclers need the bags and film to be CLEAN and DRY. Please don’t include dirty or wet bags, or any material that has food or other residues.

If in doubt, throw it out!

Amazon will contribute 0.5% of your total purchase price to the IRC every time you shop.  The next time you shop online, please be sure to visit

What is AmazonSmile?

AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at, you’ll find the exact same prices and selection as, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization.

How do I shop at AmazonSmile?

To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to from the web browser on your computer or mobile device.

Can I use my existing account on AmazonSmile?

Yes, you use the same account on and AmazonSmile. Your shopping cart, Wish List, wedding or baby registry, and other account settings are also the same.

Thanks again for supporting the IRC!

The IRC is teaming up with Jack Johnson on his 2014 From Here To Now To You Tourand All At Once, a social action network connecting nonprofits with people who want to become active in their local and world community.

 All At Once comes to life online at and at the Jack Johnson concerts where you can get educated, get inspired, and connect face-to-face with us and other local and national non-profits.

The IRC will be hanging out June 1st at The Lawn at White River State Park before the show, so make sure to visit our table!

ALSO, Donate to the IRC today, and your donation will be matched by the Johnson Ohana Charitable Foundation through September 1st, up to a total of $2,500. Please remember to indicate the money is for “All At Once” in the donation form.

Renewing Members

New MembersAllen County Solid Waste Management DistrictBaleties.comArdagh GroupBarFly VenturesCarol BeauregardClearStream RecyclingCarton CouncilFagerdala Global Packaging GroupDuke EnergyGreen Bottom Line, Inc.Eco Partners, Inc.Jewish Federation of Greater IndianapolisEskenazi HealthKettle Creek CorporationDebbie HackmanKruse Carpet RecyclingIDEMRachel MorrisIndra FrankOhio Mills Corp.IngredionPlastic Recycling Inc.Indiana American WaterPurdue Technical Assistance ProgramJAYCO, Inc.Simple RecyclingKC Recycling Depot/KCSWMDKeramida Inc.KrogerJill NewhouseSusan MatthewsPull-A-PartRay’s TrashRepublic ServicesRose-Hulman Institute of TechnologyShelby County S.W.M.D.Solid Waste Management District of St. Joe CountyThe Can Lady ProjectTippecanoe County Solid Waste Management DistrictDavid Vonnegut-GabovitchWabash County Solid Waste Management DistrictJames White

Interested in being listed in our Member Directory? Email Danni to include or update your listing.


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