I never met a paperclip I didn’t like

Dear Editor,

If you haven’t heard, I am retiring at the end of 2019. Yeah, after reading the above, you now don’t have to wonder why.

Really, though, I have found recycled paperclips are very versatile items. You can use them for most anything.

They are dependable, they don’t talk back, they’re flexible, they are reliable.

After almost 29 years, I have seen a lot of paperclips – and changes in the Paulding County recycling program.

In 1987, Ohio enacted a law to divert waste from Ohio’s landfills. The best way to do that was to take items out of the waste stream by recycling. Each county had to participate in a single solid waste district or become a part of a multiple county district. Paulding County is in a four county solid waste district with Defiance, Fulton, and Williams Counties.

In 1988, Susan Mayer was the first Paulding County Litter Prevention and Recycling Program Manager. The name was changed in the 1990’s to the Waste Management Education & Awareness program.

I joined Susan in 1991. Together we went to each elementary school and did an hour long “recycling show” to promote recycling activities. One of the activities was a school-wide recycling collection. Everyone in the school would collect their recycling for the whole school year. In May, each school would bring their recycling to the school at a designated date and time. The items would be sorted, put in semi-trailers and weighed. The school with the most recycling would win the coveted Recycling Traveling Trophy.

The Traveling Trophy was retired in 1995 when the county purchased a 20 foot enclosed trailer that would travel throughout the county. It would stop at different locations, where Paulding County residents could bring their recycling. This practice is still being used today.

The program has evolved and continues to provide recycling opportunities to the county. I am really proud to have been a part of that.

I have worked with so many great people over the years. There are too many to list here by name. The program and I have had support from the Paulding County Commissioners, youth groups, schools and students involved and local villages and townships.

A lot of my success is due to the support of my husband, George, our children, their spouses and our grandchildren. Each and every one of them has given their time and efforts to making my career the success it is. Gee, they may end up with a paperclip or two for their efforts!

Yours in Recycling,

Becky Suvar