Members, It’s Time to Vote!

MassRecycle is happy to announce that it’s time to vote in the Board of Directors: both new and renewals.  Our new Directors will be signing up for two year terms.  Current Directors who are ready to renew will serve another term: those marked * are running for a one-year term, and the others are running for two year terms.  We are doing this to make sure the whole Board does not come up for a vote all at once in the future. President/Director Gretchen Carey will be staying on, as her term is not up next year.

If you are a paid member in good standing, please join us on the evening of September 16 at 7:00 pm for a brief Annual Members’ Meeting over Zoom.  Listen to our Board President give an update on MassRecycle business and then you can cast your vote. If you cannot make the Annual Members’ Meeting, please vote online no later than 5 pm on Tuesday, September 15, 2020.  Zoom information and an online ballot will be sent to you via email from

Please read further to learn about the candidates.

Dave Afonso*, Rehrig Pacific

Dave Alfonso has been in the Waste & Recycling industry for seven years and joined the MassRecycle board in 2013.  He is employed by Rehrig Pacific where he oversees Rehrig’s Northeast territory working with haulers and municipalities to help them reduce trash and increase recycling through the use of curbside containers and technology.   Dave has a passion for partnering with municipalities to reduce recycling contamination.  His interest and focus on the board is on finding new ways to broadcast the important work of MassRecycle to municipalities and industries not yet taking full advantage of the networking and educational opportunities offered by the organization.

Erin Banfield*, Casella Resource Solutions

Erin Banfield has been a MassRecycle Board member since 2018.  She is a Senior Business Manager at Casella, managing the municipal strategy with a focus in Massachusetts.  Erin has worked in the waste and recycling industry for over five years for Casella Resource Solutions, the largest recycler in the Northeast. Erin brings knowledge of commodities and markets, as well as access to the MRF operators, as a part of an immediate team within Casella.  She would like to focus on continued recycling and reuse education, working with MassDEP and the RecycleSmart campaign around what is and what is not recyclable and why. Her goal is to continue cleaning up the recycling stream to help the MRF operators produce a better-quality product with higher value.  She would also like to continue work around EPR to help push recyclable packaging standards back on the manufacturers of products to again help driving a cleaner and more valuable recycling stream.

Kesiah Bascom, OffBeet Composting

Kesiah Bascom is the founder/owner of OffBeet Compost, a food scrap collection and composting company serving the Merrimack Valley, and is new to the MassRecycle Board.  Kesiah has spent the past 7 years working in the sustainable agriculture and food justice realm.  Raised in a household with a large garden, she grew up valuing food and its unifying nature.  Prior to starting OffBeet Compost, Kesiah was the Community Program Manager at Mill City Grows, a food access organization in Lowell, MA. She also worked as an Assistant Grower at The Food Project, a non-profit organization that employs teenagers on farms in Lincoln, Roxbury and the North Shore of Massachusetts. It focuses on community improvement and outreach, and education about health, leadership, charity, and sustainable agriculture. These experiences deeply influenced Kesiah’s path to founding OffBeet Compost and her interest in joining the MassRecycle board.

Kesiah has made the Merrimack Valley Region her home and the regional launch location for OffBeet Compost. She is currently in pursuing a Master’s in Public Policy at Tufts University.  Kesiah is excited to join the MassRecycle Board and contribute to working towards a sustainable future.

Jeff Cabral*, Complete Recycling Services

Jeff Cabral works as the Business Development / Account Manager for Complete Recycling Solutions for six years. He supports recycling services (including Electronic and Universal Waste) for municipalities, businesses, and hospitals and program based programs for mercury material collection and recycling. Jeff has been on the board for over 10 years and works on building relationships with municipalities. Jeff enjoys connecting people together during MassRecycle social events and helping out for the Conference.

Michael Cicale, Town of WellFleet

Mike is a new member of the MassRecycle Board. He is currently the Foreman at the Town of Wellfleet’s Transfer Station and a SWANA certified Transfer Station Manager. He has held many roles over 16 years in the solid waste industry from his early career as a laborer, equipment operator, truck driver, mechanic, route planner, and fabricator, as well as an educational outreach coordinator and manager. In Wellfleet, where the population changes seasonally from 3,500 to 17,000, Mike is required to juggle all of these functions. His background provides MassRecycle with a “boots on the ground” perspective of the challenges faced at a municipal Transfer Station. Mike is focused on solutions to waste capacity issues, EPR, and effective ways to educate people on what happens to the materials that they place into their bins.

Debra Darby*, Tetra Tech, MassRecycle Secretary

Deb has been an active MassRecycle board member since 2016 and currently serves as the Board Secretary.

As the Organics Lead with Tetra Tech, an environmental engineering and solid waste professional services firm, Deb is involved in developing, planning, permitting and operations of organics material management systems, working closely with clients to implement innovative strategies for diverting organic material from the solid waste stream, including through composting and anerobic digestion in pursuit of zero waste goals.

Deb brings 14 years of organics experience to her work on the Board, as well as, marketing expertise in both the public and private sector. She is a US Composting Council Certified Composting Professional (CCP).

Prior to joining Tetra Tech, Deb worked as a director for Metabolix, a plant-science biotechnology company, which led to her involvement with green chemistry, organics recycling and composting.

Deb is an active member of MassRecycle, Environmental Business Council of New England (EBCNE), Northeast Recycling Council (NERC), US Composting Council (USCC), and serves as a commissioner on the City of Gloucester MA Clean Energy Council. She holds a master’s degree in Cleaner Production/Pollution Prevention from the University of Massachusetts Lowell.

Deb would like to continue focus on building organics infrastructure in Massachusetts and would consider it an honor to continuing service to MassRecycle.

Rob Gogan, Harvard University

Rob Gogan is Recycling and Waste Manager for Harvard University, and new to the MassRecycle Board. He oversees waste reduction, surplus, recycling, composting and disposal for the campus. The University’s goal is to cut trash to 50% of 2006 levels by 2020. Rob will be retiring from Harvard in 2020, but his ongoing recycling interests focus on maintaining consumers’ opportunities for recycling, establishing a culture of reuse, supporting the repair movement, promoting producer responsibility, and building community through sharing. Prior to his Harvard work, Rob taught English both to native speakers and as a second language in Boston, Maine and Iran. His leisure activities include sailing, kayaking, hiking, cross-country skiing and any other carbon-free outdoor activities.

John Hanselman, Vanguard Renewables

John Hanselman is Chairman and CEO of Vanguard Renewables, a leader in farm-based anaerobic digestion, and a recent addition to the MassRecycle Board. He has more than thirty years of experience in leading renewable energy, environmental, and mission-based companies. He has helped define the growth of the American renewable energy markets; pioneering solar on brownfields, and now championing farm-based anaerobic digestion. Hanselman is passionate about recycling what was once considered food waste into renewable energy and low carbon fertilizer and focuses on developing organic waste solutions for farms, food producers, and food users.

Previously, Hanselman founded Active Impulse Systems, Inc., and served as President and CEO until Philips Electronics acquired the company. He also served as President and CEO of LingoMotors, Inc., a natural language software company. Mr. Hanselman is the Founder of Brightfields Development, a solar brownfields development company and Renova Partners, a brownfield redevelopment company.

Hanselman has been an invited speaker at Harvard Business School and both MIT’s Sloan Business School and Center for Real Estate Development. He has numerous published papers and holds patents in the semiconductor and natural language software areas

John sees vast opportunities for MassRecycle to partner with the Commonwealth to build jobs in the recycling, renewables and zero waste industries.

Abbey Massaro, Center for EcoTechnology

Abbey Massaro is new to the MassRecycle Board. She is an Environmental Specialist for the Center for EcoTechnology where she provides technical expertise to aid businesses in developing recycling, reuse, and food recovery programs.  Abbey is responsible for a construction and demolition reuse and recycling pilot program and partners closely with the State of Massachusetts.

Ms. Massaro has worked in the environmental sector for six years and holds a B.S. in Environmental Conservation from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, as well as a certificate in Public Policy.  She is currently working to obtain a Zero Waste TRUE Advisor Certification with the U.S. Green Business Council.  In her free time Abbey helps organize reuse events in her community.

Abbey is passionate about the MassRecycle mission and is interested in further expanding the MassRecycle toolbox of resources and events, and she would like to share the knowledge she has gleaned from her work in the waste hauling and construction industries with the Board, municipalities and partner organizations.   Using less and reuse are areas Abbey believes are important for MassRecycle and the state to focus on given the evolving conservation landscape.

Mike Orr, City of Cambridge

Michael Orr is Recycling Director for the City of Cambridge where he oversees all waste diversion programs for the City with the goal of reducing trash 30% by 2020 and 80% by 2050. In 2019, the City reached the first milestone. Through enhanced recycling and curbside compost, and other initiatives the City of Cambridge reduced trash 32% in 2019, from its 2008 baseline. Mike has more than seven years’ experience in waste and recycling.

Mike has served on the MassRecycle board since 2018; his interest and focus on the board is to improve organics diversion statewide and to advocate for extended producer responsibility which is good for all of Massachusetts.

Waneta Trabert, City of Newton, MassRecycle Vice President

Waneta Trabert has been on the MassRecycle BOD since 2016, and has been the Vice President of MassRecycle for two years. Ms. Trabert brings a policy and municipally focused perspective to MassRecycle. Advocating to get extended producer responsibility legislation passed in Massachusetts is her primary focus in her work with MassRecycle. She is also enthusiastic about providing communication and useful resources to municipalities, including the MassRecycle Podcast that she co-hosts.

In her work as the Director of Sustainable Materials Management for the City of Newton she manages the daily collection of residential trash, recycling, and yard waste; oversees the drop-off recycling center; leads the education and outreach efforts to residents; coordinates household hazardous waste collection events; and communicates with various stakeholders about policy improvements to reduce waste disposal.

Ms. Trabert has a Masters of Science in Natural Resources Management with an emphasis in waste management. Her professional experience includes working for the Product Stewardship Institute, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and managing hazardous waste at McMurdo Station, Antarctica. The field of sustainable materials management, specifically finding practical policy solutions to reduce waste disposal, is a true passion for her.

Gunther Wellenstein*, City of Haverhill

Gunther has been on the MassRecycle Board of Directors since November 2015. In the organization his interests are in EPR of mattresses, electronics, paints, medications and sharps.  For more than fifteen years, he has been managing municipal curbside collection programs; Gunther implemented automated municipal solid waste and single stream recycling in a city of 25,000 households (pop. 135,000).

Gunther is focused on providing effective and efficient Sustainable Material Management for the community, in the form of curbside collection and drop-off at the Recycle Center.

A most recent goal is to improve information sharing, BMPs, SOPs, and expanding professional advancement ie. CEUs and certification.  Gunther has two SWANA certifications: Manager Recycling Systems and Zero Waste Principles & Practices; working on a third: Managing MSW Collection Systems.