SPOTLIGHT on Biosolids YP (Young Professionals)

This SPOTLIGHT is a special treat for us all as it celebrates the young talent in our environmental realm. What is more, we are able to call out several special opportunities.  1. Join the YP Committee, by notifying [email protected] to be added to the list and putting Tuesday, May 18th at 10 am. on your calendar for the next YP meeting.  2. Speak at our July Symposium, as the Programming Committee is reserving a slot during the July Virtual Biosolids Symposium for a YP presentation; so while the official deadline from proposals is passed, send yours by the end of this week to Howard Matteson, [email protected]. 3. Be the MABA Social Media Guru, as the Communications Committee is in need of a social media savvy young person to help MABA better engage through its Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube pages; contact [email protected]  with your ideas. 

Carolyn Christy 

Carolyn Christy

Carolyn Christy, RDP Technologies, ([email protected], 610-574-3037). Carolyn has a degree in environmental earth sciences with a minor in soil science and a minor in agricultural business from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She has been working for RDP Technologies for over 5 years doing sales support and marketing. RDP is a family-owned manufacturing company that specializes in lime chemical feed equipment. Carolyn says, “I am passionate about creating a quality biosolids end product for regenerative agriculture. I have given a number of papers on this subject. I am also starting the YP subcommittee for MABA and am looking for more people to get involved.” If you are in the YP category, consider attending the next MABA YP Committee meeting! Carolyn enjoys being outside doing recreational sports. Her favorites are hiking, running, swimming, skiing, and road biking.  The picture shows Carolyn hiking Zion national park in the fall of 2019. 

DJ Wacker          

DJ WackerDJ Wacker, Project Engineer, RK&K (410-462-9192, [email protected]). DJ’s introduction into the world of biosolids started about 10 years ago as an intern at RK&K. He was tasked with collecting and lugging several 5-gallon samples of undigested sludge out of the lower level of a pumping station in the 95-degree summer heat. Somehow that did not deter him from biosolids, in fact, he went on to design that plant’s dewatering facility. DJ reports, “I ended up doing my master’s thesis on anaerobic digestion and never looked back.”  DJ loves seeing projects from conception all the way through commissioning and has had the opportunity to work on a wide range of biosolids projects from thickening and anaerobic digestion to thermal drying, digester gas utilization, and RNG. He also loves innovation in technology and helping clients find the right process that suits their needs and goals. DJ is now carrying his biosolids enthusiasm out into the wider world; check out his recent blog by clicking HERE. When not working in the world of biosolids or wastewater, DJ typically looks for his next destination to travel to and/or thrill-seeking adventure. You can see that in this picture of DJ running with the bulls in Spain.

  Emma Yates 

Emma YatesEmma Yates, Sales Rep, WeCare Denali – Hilburn, NY (845-521-6568, [email protected]). Emma has served as a Business Development Representative for WeCare Denali for the past four years. In this position, she is responsible to sell and market WeCare Compost®. Emma graduated from Allegheny College where she majored in Environmental Science. While she tried to avoid taking any classes related to soil, Emma ended up in a class where they were tasked to increase their school's carbon sequestration through composting. She became smitten with compost and found her home at WeCare Denali where she could create a large-scale impact in the industry and work on an incredible team of composting experts. Marketing biosolids and green waste compost in the tri-state area is a dynamic operation that has provided her with countless connections, learning opportunities, challenges, and enjoyment. Emma currently resides in Jersey City, NJ, and spends her free time practicing yoga, hiking, or exploring the area’s food scene. 

 Garrett Benisch     

Garrett BenischGarrett Benisch, Director of Design Development, Bioforcetech ([email protected], (973) 985-4265). From a young age, Garrett has been fascinated by materials. He says, “As my mother would work on custom centerpieces for parties in our backyard, I would be completely content ‘painting’ water on the railings of our wooden deck just to watch it change color, absorb the water, and then dry out again.”  Still today, Garrett walks through a park or cuts vegetables while cooking, intrigued by how materials change and transform as people interact with them.  He completed his Master's thesis in Industrial Design, Sum Waste, which envisioned turning biosolids into clean valuable resources that society could interact with directly. Shortly after graduating, he met Valentino Villa at the MABA Summer Symposium, and soon after joined the Bioforcetech team to research and develop what he now calls OurCarbon.™  The new job took him from Brooklyn to San Francisco in the midst of a world-changing pandemic, spending time on the phone with testing labs, manufacturers, and Instagram influencers alike.  When not tinkering with OurCarbon™ in the office, Garrett can be found at Ocean Beach with his dog, Hoya, or catching waves in the surf, with very little grace and a really big smile.


Kelli Timbrook

Kelli TimbrookKelli Timbrook, Facilities Manager, Casella Resource Solutions (518-631-3763, [email protected]). As a lifelong environmentalist, Kelli got her start in traditional recycling helping to build municipal and K-12 recycling programs. She then transferred those waste diversion skills into beneficial use of residual organics, always with the same goal of reuse, diverting as much material as possible from the landfill. In her seven years with Casella, she has contributed to the diversion of over 10,000 tons of organic materials, such as biosolids, paper mill residuals, and food scraps. In addition to her work with Casella, Kelli is a Board member of the New York State Association of Reduction, Reuse and Recycling (NYSAR3) since 2012, serving two terms as President from 2016-2020, and Vice Chairperson of the Federation of Solid Waste Association of NY.  When she is not hanging out at compost facilities or WWTPs, Kelli is busy dragging her two kids and husband around both local trails and the Adirondacks (she aspires to be a 46er, climbing all 46 peaks in the Adirondacks) while commenting on the soil and crop health of all the farm fields they pass along the way.