Murray J. Fox Scholarships & NRC Awards

November 10, 2022 from 11:30 am to 11:55 am

Presented by the NRC

Murray J. Fox Scholarships

Two outstanding college students from around the country are recipients of this year’s Murray J. Fox Scholarships, offered through the National Recycling Coalition. Scholarships focus on advancing students’ academic and professional interests in social justice aspects of the recycling industry.  These students will receive $2,000 scholarships towards their education, registration for the National Recycling Congress, as well as membership in the National Recycling Coalition.  

The Murray J. Fox Scholarship Fund was created in 1994 to honor one of the founding members of the National Recycling Coalition through an endowment to continue his legacy of fostering future leaders. Since then, dozens of students have benefited from his support.  Many are making valuable contributions in the industry.  A tribute to him is posted at the NRC’s Campus Council web page.   

The NRC congratulates these students on their awards and welcomes them to the Coalition!

Amanda Spiegel: Senior, Operations and Supply Chain Management, University of South Carolina

At the University of South Carolina, Ms Spiegel  is doing initial work and learning about processes on campus with the Sustainable Carolina Leadership Program.  On the Food Systems Team, she’s followed waste from campus and works with offices and events on campus, ensuring their daily practices and materials used are sustainable.  She believes that going upstream, to the beginning of production and supply, is where change ultimately needs to occur.

Amanda is excited to continue to explore her passion of sustainable materials management and recycling. She believes she can make a change through the supply chain and basic business processes because there is a lot of room for it to grow.

Ricardo Sheler: Junior, Sustainable Urban Environments, New York University

Ricardo believes the basis of environmental sustainability is a state of systemic harmony in which our built environments, consumptive behaviors, and socio-economic practices fit within the delicate balance of caring for all human needs and natural environments form a true circular economy.  He observes that current systems of recycling are underwhelming and ineffective.  This leaves much of our recycling to be exported to be picked apart in Southeast Asia, West Africa, and Latin America-polluting the environments for people of color in the developing Global South.

Through his career in environmental technology, public policy, and sustainability, he intends to help the fight for more sustainable systems than those currently dominating our linear economic societies: systems which prioritize genuine circularity without falling for corporate greenwashing traps where exporting of waste is really just cast onto the world’s poor. 

Instead, Ricardo will help develop systems which promote the equitable, sustainable, environments of the future. Mr. Sheler wants to influence the policy behind these changes at all levels of government from local to international through climate advocacy groups, environmental justice organizations, and hopefully through public office itself one day.

NRC Annual Awards

The annual awards program is designed to honor and recognize outstanding individuals, programs, and organizations around the country, both for their achievements, and to serve as a model and a resource for learning for NRC members. Award categories recognize outstanding programs in for-profit businesses, higher education, non-profit organizations, recycling organizations, diversion innovation, and community / governmental programs, as well as awards for outstanding emerging leader and lifetime achievement.”

And here are the awards and criteria:

Lifetime Achievement Award– recognizing an outstanding individual with a lifetime of leadership and dedication to the field of recycling.

Bill Heenan Emerging Leader Award – recognizing an outstanding individual aged 35 or under who has emerged as a leader in the field.

Outstanding Recycling Innovation – recognizing an outstanding innovation in recycling, organics, or reduction that moves the industry forward.

Outstanding Recycling Organization – awarded to a State Recycling Organization with outstanding growth, programs, leadership, or which has made a substantial impact on the field.

Outstanding Business Leadership – awarded to a for-profit company showing leadership, innovation, and success as a corporate model in recycling and diversion.

Outstanding Non-Profit Business Leadership – awarded to a not-for-profit company showing leadership, innovation, and success as a corporate model in recycling and diversion.

Outstanding Community or Government Program – awarded to a public (community / governmental) program showing innovation, progress, or success as a model for other public programs.

Outstanding Outreach Program – awarded to public, nonprofit or other entities showing leadership, creativity, quality, and success in diversion outreach.

Outstanding Higher Education Program – awarded to a college / university with an exceptional program in recycling or in connecting higher education and the industry in the areas of degrees, tech transfer, career services, materials management, etc.

Thanks to NRC Presenters: