Waste industry stalwart Harry Wilson scooped the pool at the 2021 Waste Innovation and Recycling Awards last night.
The founder of Handybin Waste Services took out awards for Leader of the year, Workplace of the year and the Innovation award.
During 50 years in the waste and resource recovery sector Wilson has pioneered collection services, designed and built some of Australia’s most sophisticated Material Recovery Facilities and piloted recycling processes for organics, glass and plastics waste.
Accepting the awards at a ceremony in Melbourne on Thursday night, Wilson recalled recycling beer bottles from the back of a garbage truck, followed by crates and a divided wheelie bin before establishing Handybin.
He said he had loved the journey and continued to look for innovation within the industry.
Wilson said he had been fortunate to work for a private company, a large public company, overseas and his own company, through it all he has appreciated his employees. He encouraged others in waste management to look after their staff.
“Look after them and they’ll look after you.”
Remondis Australia was the other big winner on the night, winning the Outstanding WARR Projects Metro for its Western Australia Container Deposit Scheme and the Operational Excellence Award. Susie McBurney, Remondis General Manager NSW/ACT was named the Woman of Waste.
McBurney said it was encouraging for organisations to have women represented at all levels of leadership and the board.
McBurney took on a leadership role at the family business before it was customary to do so.
She said that joining the waste industry as a 24-year-old in the year 2000 wasn’t without its challenges, and today she is a strong advocate for women leading the way in the waste management sector.
“My advice for women in what is still a male dominated industry is work hard, have balance and if you’re told ‘no’ find someone who will say yes,” she said.
More than 150 people from the waste and recycling sector attended Thursday night’s awards at Showtime Events Centre, postponed in 2021 because of COVID-19.
Other award winners on the night were:
Outstanding facility award – Bega Valley Shire Council
Young Professional of the Year – Tara Osborne
Outstanding WARR Project, Regional – Drumderg Services
Community Engagement Success of the Year – TerraCycle
For more on the winners and pictures from the night, visit: www.wasteawards.com.au