The Pesticide Stewardship Alliance Presents 2018 Awards

For Immediate Release
Thursday, March 15, 2018
Contact: Scott Birchfield, TPSA Immediate Past President
Phone: 336-632-6128

St. Louis, MO – The Pesticide Stewardship Alliance (TPSA) held its annual conference in Memphis, Tennessee in February and presented several awards.

Program Excellence: Sam Gibson, in memoriam, USAg Recycling.

Sam Gibson founded USAg Recycling, Inc. (formerly SCT) in 1991 specifically for the purpose of collecting and recycling properly rinsed plastic agricultural pesticide containers in Texas. In 1992, USAg Recycling, Inc. became one of the first contractors to sign a contract with the newly formed non-profit organization, the Agricultural Container Research Council (ACRC). Since its inception, USAg Recycling, Inc. has collected and recycled approximately 84 million pounds of agricultural plastic in 28 states.

Sam was one of the founders of The Pesticide Stewardship Alliance (TPSA) and became a member in 2006. In 2007, he was awarded the PIZZY (Leadership in Product Stewardship – Private) award by TPSA. In 2016, he was elected to the TPSA Board of Directors to represent the pesticide container management industry. He was always among the first to volunteer to ensure the success of TPSA.

Today, USAg Recycling, Inc. is the only remaining contractor of the original ACRC Contractors and remains committed to providing a much needed and valuable service to the agricultural community. USAg Recycling, Inc. currently services twenty states and is headquartered in Waller, TX and has regional warehouses in Greensville, MS; Tifton, GA and Goldsboro, NC.

Sam advanced the success of the agricultural container recycling program with his feet on the ground, working closely with state and county agricultural departments by performing grinding demonstrations and public collections to develop a working knowledge of how the recycling program works and how beneficial it is to get more applicators/end users involved. Gibson died unexpectedly March 8, 2017.

Leadership in Product Stewardship – Private Industry or the Pizzy Award:
Ron Perkins, Ag Container Recycling Council (ACRC).

Ron has served as Executive Director of the ACRC for the past eleven years starting in 2006. Under Ron’s leadership, ACRC has increased its plastics collection annually, increased its membership and effectively partnered and managed work with its contractors. Ron has been a tireless advocate for our industry and devoted to its member companies and making Ag plastics container recycling a success. Ron has been a driving force in ACRC’s continued success.

Ron’s experience spans 45 years in the waste management and resource recovery profession. This experience includes fifteen years as the owner/operator of a solid waste management firm that implemented innovative residential recycling systems in the Eastern United States. He has worked in the public and private sectors at state, national and international levels and is a nationally recognized pioneer in the development of cost-effective and sustainable recycling system infrastructure.

Perkins has been a consummate professional in his dealings with members, contractors and regulatory agencies alike. In addition, Ron has also been very involved with TPSA over the years as he has presented at TPSA meetings and served on the board of directors from 2012-2015.

Outstanding Member Contribution – Don Gilbert, Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.

Don Gilbert has been with TPSA from the very beginning – since it was the National Pesticide Stewardship Alliance (NPSA) and the first Conference in the fall of 2000 in St Petersburg, FL.

Don has served in many roles and helped TPSA grow from a fledgling organization. His impact was there in the beginning – all the while being a valuable resource for both Pesticide Container Recycling and Pesticide Disposal Programs – the very reasons NPSA was initially established, and the two roles Don has had in his home state of Pennsylvania for over 20+ years, with insightful program innovation and tremendous productiveness.

A long-standing and core member or NPSA/TPSA, Don has consistently been an advocate for everything that TPSA stands for – pesticide stewardship and outreach, and an active, hands – on leader in the stewardship community.

Don has recently changed positions in the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, but before taking his new position, he felt strongly about keeping PA active in our stewardship community and required the ability to attend TPSA Conferences before accepting his new job duties outside of the environmental arena – dedicated to the stewardship cause and to TPSA.

President’s Award – Kevin Neal, Office Indiana State Chemist.

Kevin has been a long time member of TPSA, served as the 2009 and 2010 President, plus has served as the chair of the annual stewardship conference and continues to be actively involved in planning the program by helping secure speakers and sponsors. He’s been a speaker at the conference, spoken to other groups about TPSA activities, and helped whenever asked. His leadership and commitment to The Pesticide Stewardship Alliance has helped it to grow and continue the advancement of global pesticide stewardship and the success of TPSA.

Neal, a former Narcotics Detective, went to work for the Office of Indiana State Chemist in 1991 as a Pesticide Investigator and continues to work in that position.

President’s Award – Bonnie McCarvel, TPSA Operations Manager.

For as long as I have been affiliated with TPSA, Bonnie has been the stabilizing force behind the organization. As our Operations Manager, Bonnie makes sure that everyone has what they need to be successful. Whether it’s me as the President, another Board Member, a Committee chair, or any other TPSA member, Bonnie knows exactly what needs to be done to ensure that TPSA remains the top Pesticide Stewardship organization in the US.

Bonnie has never failed to point me in the right direction as I searched for an answer, and more amazingly has never given me a hard time when I ask her a question for the third time because I can’t remember the answer! She is tireless in her dedication to “steward” our stewardship alliance. As the members, officers, board, and Committee chairs continually change, Bonnie remains the constant that has allowed TPSA to become what it is today.

It is with great pleasure, and great personal gratitude that I present Bonnie with the 2018 President’s award.

The Pesticide Stewardship Alliance (TPSA), founded in 2000, is an organization of federal, state and local governmental agencies, educational and research institutions, public organizations, private corporations and individuals that are actively involved in different aspects of pesticide stewardship. The goals of TPSA are to increase the effectiveness, efficiency and longevity of various pesticide stewardship efforts.

Please go to the TPSA web site for more information. The 2019 Pesticide Stewardship Conference is scheduled for February 5-7 in Savannah, Georgia.

Photographs are available from the TPSA office upon request.