When certified public accountant (CPA) John Mango and waste recycling expert John DiMarco began working together many years ago, they discovered they had many common interests and quickly became close friends.
Eventually, they saw an opportunity to capitalize on those interests by identifying a need in the marketplace for a modern, technologically advanced recycling business that did more than just provide dumpster service. “They wanted to contribute to a better environment and build something for their families,” said Erin Myers, marketing manager for Evergreen Recycling Solutions and daughter of John Mango.
So in 2007, in Newark, New Jersey, Mango and DiMarco opened a full service Material Recovery Facility, and Evergreen Recycling Solutions was founded with a primary focus on the construction industry. This facility is different from any other because it not only recycles construction debris but also turns it into a wood-based alternative fuel source. It is also one of the few facilities that can accept co-mingled materials.
Evergreen recycles over ninety percent of the contents of mixed construction and demolition dumpsters, and the fuel is then used by energy companies throughout the New Jersey tri-state area as a cleaner alternative to coal.
As the company grew, Mango and DiMarco were able to bring their families into the company. Mango has four daughters, and DiMarco has one daughter, and of the five, four of them work in the business.
Today, the company has 110 employees, many of whom have been with the company since its inception and are proud to be part of the largest capacity Material Recovery Facility in New Jersey.
From the time the business was founded, it was extremely important to the owners that they establish a good corporate culture. They looked for people with integrity, who felt the sense of loyalty that comes from being valued as an employee and well treated. The company continues to hire locally to support the economy in Newark and surrounding cities.
Evergreen also recognized the importance of making sure that everyone felt part of the team, and understood the basic principle that happy employees make the best employees.
“We look forward to coming to work every day and being together,” said Linda Cicalese, sales manager for Evergreen. “Everyone is treated well. It’s all about the culture here; it feels like family.
“The management at Evergreen has elevated people that may have been overlooked for a management or supervisory position in other companies,” continued Cicalese. “We sometimes have language barriers, but that’s never stopped us from promoting from within, and giving opportunities to people who show integrity, loyalty and extra initiative.”
When the company began, eleven years ago, Mango and DiMarco knew they were never going to be your average dumpster business.
“Evergreen Recycling Solutions is in the recycling business, and providing dumpster service is a way for us to recycle more material,” said Myers. “We hold the largest capacity permit in the state – up to 2,500 tons a day – and in order to operate and be profitable, we rely on our own dumpster service, and other haulers that come to tip at our facility.”
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has been quite involved with the operation, ensuring that Evergreen is aligned with the objectives of the state – following state and county regulations and staying current with regular inspections.
“New Jersey is a highly-regulated state when it comes to garbage,” explained Cicalese. “When the owners opened the facility, they gave the counties the assurances that we would maintain compliance within their rules, and in exchange for that, we are part of the county waste-flow directive, so we can accept material from places that many other facilities cannot.”
Even when other haulers tip at their facility, the company has gone above what is required to ensure they are held in compliance with the rules and regulations of the state.
When material arrives at the facility in Newark, it is initially inspected, then put through a system of shredders, shakers, magnets and blowers to sort recyclables and ultimately manufacture Evergreen’s wood-based alternative fuel product.
When it comes to producing fuel, Evergreen works with each end market to custom build the system and custom blend the material to ensure an easy implementation process. “We are always looking for and targeting new energy companies, large corporations and manufacturing facilities that want to reduce their carbon footprint and lower their energy bills at the same time,” said Myers.
Evergreen is heavily invested in its proprietary software, which tracks and monitors all of the material that comes into its facility. Every load that comes through the doors has the ability to be recalled, in perpetuity. The information is available to customers within twenty-four hours of the load tipping at the facility and easily accessed through a secure link on the website, so customers can log in any time and see exactly what was tipped and what was recycled.
Evergreen works with all types of contractors. You’ll see its dumpsters on home remodeling jobs, commercial fit-outs, new home construction, demolition jobs, large multi-family complexes and office towers. Builders choose the Evergreen team for their service, capability, low rates and recycling. “We work with a lot of builders who are doing LEED and green building projects, because we’re able to provide detailed recycling reports that show the percentage recycled of each load that comes from their project,” explained Myers.
Educating customers is also an important and unique component of the business. Evergreen hosts quarterly prep courses for the LEED Green Associate credential. It’s a three day course, held at its office location in Springfield, NJ. Upon completion of the course, the students are fully prepared to take the Green Associate exam. They have a 98 percent pass rate.
The company will also visit businesses interested in their recycling process, and do a ‘Lunch-and-Learn’ presentation that introduces Evergreen and its services.
In terms of expansion plans, the company is focused on growing its dumpster service in Northern & Central NJ. The owners want to stay close to home and deeply penetrate the market.
“We are well-situated in Newark. It’s central to cities with a lot of growth and development. This also allows us to provide better service to our customers,” says Myers. “No matter what, we can be there within twenty-four hours. We want to make sure our customers are getting great service, so we add equipment and make sure our facility is upgraded when needed, in order to handle our growth.”
Growth beyond this is focused on finding new facilities and businesses that can use the company’s wood-based alternative fuel product. Evergreen works to implement its fuel for energy companies and manufacturing facilities – any large company – that can see the value in turning a short term project and investment into a long term cost savings.
As the company heads into its busy spring season, it has added more equipment to its inventory. More trucks and dumpsters will help it to serve customers better.
“We recently upgraded our facility so it runs faster and more efficiently than it did before, and it’s nice to have the extra equipment to better serve and continue to grow year over year,” said Myers. “We look forward to a busy construction season!”