The 2021 ISRI Fall Meetings began Monday, Oct. 18, in Charleston, S.C. The meetings run through Wednesday, Oct. 20. Most of the meetings are open and free for all ISRI members to attend. A handful of virtual meetings were held the week of Oct. 10-16, including the Equipment and Service Providers Committee, the Shredder Committee, and ISRI’s Young Executives Council.

ISRI Chair Gary Champlin began the opening ISRI fall board of directors meeting by welcoming all in-person and virtual attendees to the 2021 ISRI Fall Meetings. “I’m looking forward to a great week,” he notes. “And I mean a great week.” He reminded attendees about the upcoming ISRI Southeast Region Fall Conference and Trade Show, which will run from Oct. 19-23 in Charleston, S.C. Champlin introduced attendees to the two newest ISRI staff members: Christopher Puig, executive assistant to ISRI president Robin Weiner, and Jerry Sjogren, senior director of safety. He highlighted some of the upcoming discussions that will take place during the Fall Meeting.

Brian Shine, leadership committee chair, presented nominees for ISRI national positions to the Board.

Sandy Brooks and Paula Murphy, co-chairs of ISRI’s Women in Recycling council (WIR), provided a brief presentation about the council including its mission, ongoing programming, and upcoming activities. Councils like WIR and Young Executives are crucial for ISRI as they help increase the pipeline into leadership roles within the recycling industry.

Cheryl Coleman, ISRI’s vice president of sustainability, reported on ISRI’s efforts to widen the workforce pipeline for the recycling industry, as well as its growing sustainability efforts. ISRI has formed a sustainability network that consists of ISRI members looking to launch sustainability efforts and those with well-developed programs. ISRI will have a Sustainability track at ISRI2022 where members will learn the basics of sustainability and easy to do environmental, social, and governance (ESG) risks and opportunity assessments; how to measure progress and the importance of recycling to manufacturing and the circular economy.

The association is planning to launch the ISRI Talent Educate, Employ, Empower (E3) Acquisition and Retention Program pilot program in June 2022. ISRI will work with ISRI members and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)/Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), trade schools, community colleges and their students. ISRI is also working collaboratively with the Federal Department of Labor and Keep America Beautiful (KAB) and their affiliate network in the metro-Atlanta area. ISRI will work with partners to design curricula and training programs to prepare students academically and host a series of seminars as part of the program to support the experiential learning opportunities.

HBCUs, TCUs, community colleges, and trade schools are untapped resources for employers to nurture and fill numerous positions within the recycling industry, Coleman noted. “By informing and inspiring a broad pool of students about the role the recycling industry plays in manufacturing, communities and the broader circular economy, we will grow a pipeline of professional and skilled workers for entry-level recycling industry positions who understand how recycling operations minimize environmental impacts, support health and safety of employees and surrounding communities, and how we support communities.”

The meetings continue through Wednesday, Oct. 20. You may view the full schedule here.

Photo courtesy of ISRI.

Hannah Zuckerman

Hannah Zuckerman

Hannah is a Writer & Editor for ISRI's Scrap News. She's interested in a wide range of topics in the recycling industry and is always eager to learn more. She graduated from Bryn Mawr College, where she majored in History and a minored in Creative Writing. She lives in Arlington, Virginia with her husband.