The Environmental Industry Associations (EIA) said it plans to go forward as a single association rather than three associations.

The association also has adjusted its staff structure into four key areas.

EIA said it will develop a governing structure to support a single association rather than three associations – EIA, the National Solid Wastes Management Association (NSWMA) and the Waste Equipment Technology Association (WASTEC). The move is aimed at “eliminating confusion with our names and enhancing the cohesion of the sectors contributing to waste management and recycling,” said Sharon Kneiss, president and CEO of EIA, in an e-mail letter.

She said the association hopes to determine the name in the next two months and reveal it at WasteExpo. EIA plans to have the governance structure and new name in place by the end of the year.

In an interview, Kneiss emphasized that there are no firm decisions yet. “There’s a lot of work that needs to be done,” she says. “We want to make sure that it’s properly vetted and that we have broad member input.”

EIA also will adjust its staff structure in four key areas.

The newly formed Programs Department will manage all existing and new programs and will be led by Janice Bradley. Alice Jacobson will head the Education effort under Bradley. EIA also will fill the Standards/Statistics and Technology positions.

The association will enhance resources for the Government Affairs/Chapter Operations Department, headed by David Biderman. He will transition out of his safety role in the coming months.

The communications effort will continue to be led by Thom Metzger. EIA will add a manager to help expand its internal and external communications, including greater use of social media.

And finally, the Membership Department will be refocused on membership marketing, recruitment and retention, and business development. EIA is looking for a membership director to fill the position.

Kneiss said EIA is expanding the scope of programs in the association to better meet and anticipate member needs.  Those include enhanced safety and certification programs, expanded statistics and standards, broader technical capabilities and stronger education programs.  These programs offer members needed services and are also designed to enhance the industry image.

“The (association) chapters remain a focal point of our efforts and these changes are also meant to support their work,” Kneiss said. “We are increasing resources for those chapter efforts and have plans to expand our geographic scope and increase membership.”

EIA’s Strategic Plan Implementation Workgroup has been working for several months to develop a board structure that has balanced representation, enlists participation by independent haulers, ensures that suppliers are adequately represented and whose representatives reflect the full range of the organization. 

 The association is proposing having a transitional board in place for two years that will include five large dues payers, three haulers/disposal companies/recyclers, three suppliers/service providers and two at-large members appointed by the board. The hauler representatives will have one and possibly two independent haulers.

The structure will include several board committees aimed at ensuring a strong member-led organization. The committees EIA is considering include Finance, Membership, Communications, Safety, Government Affairs, Chapter issues, Statistics, Standards and Technical issues. 

EIA will hold webinars in March and April to present more information and get feedback.

 “This is an exciting time for EIA,” Kneiss said. “The membership has been actively engaged in developing a new direction for the association.  We are making these changes to set a strong direction for our association, establish greater value for members and improve the industry’s image.  We want to be the ‘Voice for all things waste and recycling.’ “