AROW Board of Directors

BEST PIC1.jpg

Meleesa Johnson

President

meleesa.johnson@co.marathon.wi.us

Board Member since 2006

Current term: 2018 - 2021

Meleesa Johnson was introduced to the diverse world of integrated waste materials management when she accepted a position, in 2003, with Portage County.  She served as Portage County's Solid Waste Department administrator, overseeing a MRF, landfill and transfer facility, until June 2009.  She left Portage County to take a job with Marathon County as their director of solid waste management.  Here she is charged with operating the county's landfill, expanding recycling options for the state's largest county and creating a more consistent recycling education program for the county's 63 responsible units. 

Meleesa was elected to the AROW board of directors in 2006.  In 2009 she took on an additional role on the board's Executive Committee.  Here she serves as treasurer.  Meleesa is proud to have been a part of the 2008 strategic planning process which laid the groundwork for an expanded, more responsive AROW.  She looks forward to using her expertise in public/environmental policy and experience from the Governor's Task Force on Waste Materials Recovery & Reuse, to build a new Government Affairs Committee. 

Analiese-Smith--cropped.jpg

Analiese Smith

Vice President
aksmith@waukeshacounty.gov

Board Member since 2018

Current term: 2019 - 2022

Analiese is Waukesha County’s Solid Waste Supervisor, overseeing a MRF in collaboration with the City of Milwaukee, a HHW program, electronics program, yard and wood waste program, and an extensive education program. Prior to her position with Waukesha County she worked in the City of Milwaukee’s recycling program. One of her biggest accomplishments was starting the curbside organics collection program. She also was the Education Manager for an environmental non-profit and a classroom teacher.

 

Due to her background, Analiese brings a strong public education expertise to the group as well as an understanding of how messages and programs resonate in urban and suburban areas of the state. She is an engaged AROW member, chairing the CME committee and serving on the board since this past June.

Mark Walter3.jpg

Mark Walter

Treasurer

Mark.Walter@browncountywi.gov

Board Member since 2012

Current term: 2018 - 2021

Mark is the Business Development Manager for the Brown County Port & Resource Recovery Department. He is responsible for the county’s Household Hazardous Waste, Food Waste Collection and Recycling Programs as well as habitat restoration projects in the bay of Green Bay. He has a multidisciplinary background in geographic information systems, environmental and land use impact analysis and planning. Mark has a degree in Cartography from the University of Wisconsin – Madison He has been a member of AROW since 2010 and currently chairs the AROW Product Stewardship Committee. 

Amanda Head Shot.jpg

Amanda Haffele

Secretary

haffelea@co.portage.wi.us

Board Member since 2017

Current term: 2020 - 20223

Amanda is Portage County's Solid Waste Director. Prior to that she served as Dunn County’s Recycling Specialist for five years and worked as the Recycling Coordinator for Eau Claire County for four of those years. She has a wealth of experience as a recycling educator as well as hands-on experience managing a Responsible Unit. Specifically, she excels at partnering with businesses and residents to increase their awareness of recycling options all while diverting materials from the landfill by finding underused specialty markets. Amanda is chairing the new Emerging Leaders Program, is and active member of the AROW Education Committee, was a participant on the AROW Glass Task Force, was instrumental in creating and bringing plastic film and bag recycling programs to Western WI and am a SWANA Certified Manager of Recycling Systems. As a representative from Western Wisconsin, she will bring a different perspective and voice to the board regarding rural and residential recycling successes and challenges. Her unique energetic presentation style engages audiences to become more active in recycling. 

2013 Photo.jpg

Valerie Parker

vparker@westonwi.gov

Board Member since 2020

Current term: 2020 - 2023

Valerie joined AROW in 2019, and was elected to the AROW Board of Directors in March, 2020.  She serves as Secretary on AROW’s Membership and Product Stewardship Committees, and really enjoys collaborating with other AROW members through all the subcommittees.

 

She serves as Planning Technician for the Village of Weston, who she has been employed by for over 20 years.  Her primary duties are overseeing the Village’s refuse and recycling program; working with new Weston business owners in obtaining their zoning and occupancy permits; and helping residents and businesses with their building permit needs, general property questions, and anything else that may come up.  She serves as Clerk for the Village’s Plan Commission, Zoning Board of Appeals, and Joint Town & Village of Weston Extraterritorial Zoning Committee. 

 

While passionate about recycling, she is also a member of SWANA and serves as the Village’s representative for Green Tier Legacy Community.

Betsy Powers crop.jpg

Betsy Powers

bpowers@scsengineers.com

Board Member since 2018

Current term: 2018 - 2021

Betsy has been in the solid waste management field for over 20 years.  She is a senior civil engineer/project manager with SCS Engineers.  She has worked with private and public sectors on landfill design, permitting and construction; C&D and yard waste management; and composting operations.  Betsy has recently worked with other solid waste colleagues on a WDNR alternative capping group subcommittee.  She is very interested in using education and outreach as a means of increasing the quality of recycling and diverting materials from landfills into productive use.  Her interest in recycling and waste reduction stems from unspoken lessons learned from her parents and a desire to make a difference.  Betsy is a member of AROW and SWANA. 

Chris Blan.png

Chris Blan

Chris.Blan@browncountywi.gov

Board Member since 2020

Current term: 2020 - 2023

Chris has been with Brown County Port & Resource Recovery for 18 years.  The last 14 years he has been a Resource Recovery Technician managing the Brown County Hazardous Material Recovery Facility - a regional program serving the residents and counties throughout Northeast WI.  Even being a hazardous waste facility their goal is to process this difficult to manage waste stream according to the waste disposal hierarchy.  He enjoys the challenge of creating alternative outlets for material previously destined for a landfill or incinerator. 

Chris is also the AROW Hazardous & Special Waste chair for the past six years, a member of the AROW Membership Committee, and a member of the Waste and Material Management Study Group’s Recover & Diversion subcommittee.  He feels his AROW membership, along with his experience in hazardous material, landfills, recycling, and as well as commercial waterway dredging activity, all show the need to balance aspects of natural, human, social, manufactured, and financial capital.

jennifer semrau.jpg

Jennifer Semrau

jennifer.semrau@wisconsin.gov

Board Member since 2019

Current term: 2019 - 2022

Jennifer is the Waste Reduction and Diversion Coordinator for the WI Department of Natural Resources.  Prior to joining the DNR in 2016, Jennifer worked for nearly 17 years as the Recycling Specialist for Winnebago County Solid Waste. Jennifer also served as past President, VP and Treasurer of AROW and is presently the Vice-Chair of the AROW Product Stewardship and Community Education & Marketing Committees.  In addition, Jennifer is on the Board of Directors of the national Product Stewardship Institute (PSI), serving on the Finance Committee and Executive Committee as Clerk, and is the proud recipient of the 2013 Christy Dixon Recycler of the Year Award.

As the statewide recycling coordinator, Jennifer brings her perspective, skills and experience to the statewide work of AROW. There are a number of areas of collaboration between the DNR and AROW, including joint work on education and outreach, food and organics management, product stewardship and more.  Further, she works frequently with national groups and organizations such as the Recycling Partnership, PSI, EPA Region 5, Midwest Market Development and other states and hopes AROW can benefit from that involvement.  

Megen Hines.jpg

Megen Hines

mhines@menomonie-wi.gov

Board Member since 2021

Current term: appointed 4/2021 to fill vacancy, term ends 2022

Megen is the Environmental Program Coordinator for the City of Menomonie where she manages the Responsible Unit, a curbside recycling program, a solid waste and recycling drop-off site and a yard waste composting facility in addition to working in stormwater, urban forestry, energy and sustainability areas for the City.

 

Prior to her work at the City of Menomonie, Megen was a recycling specialist in Dunn and St. Croix Counties for over 6 years. Megen has 7+ years of hands-on experience managing Responsible Units and providing recycling education. She brings her perspective and experience in the challenges of rural recycling in Western Wisconsin to the AROW Board. Megen has been a member of AROW since 2014 and an active member of the AROW Communications, Marketing & Education (CME) Committee since 2015.