Conference & Education

We’re working with the Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) to deliver a conference program that is more technical, more innovative and more essential to you than ever before—and that warrants the two-year wait! The core education of GWMS is the submission of comprehensive abstracts in all areas related to solid waste engineering and managment that have been vetted by GWMS’s committe of industry experts. The presentations will be given by researchers from top academic institutions and industry experts.

Special thanks to our prestigious Conference Technical Committee:

  • Chris Bareither, PhD, Colorado State University
  • Morton Barlaz, PhD, North Carolina State University
  • Craig Benson, PhD, University of Virginia
  • Nicole Berge, PhD, University of South Carolina
  • Bryan Staley, PhD, Environmental Research and Education Foundation


Welcome & Keynote

February 24, 2020
Indian Wells Ballroom
The Transformation of our Industry: Looking Back and Moving Forward

The global waste industry is at a crossroads. The issues and challenges we face today are more dynamic and complex than ever before. While this may seem daunting for some, our industry has a history of solving tough challenges, and we must continue to focus on delivering innovative solutions that will drive our industry forward.

In her keynote address, Tara Hemmer will reflect on the evolution of the global waste industry and the emerging themes impacting how we do business today and in the future. Ms. Hemmer will also highlight the innovation that has changed waste collection, disposal, recycling and landfills. Ms. Hemmer will highlight the challenges and opportunities Waste Management (WM) faces as an industry leader, and the steps the company is taking to live its core values in pursuit of a sustainable tomorrow.

Tara Hemmer
SVP Field Operations,
Waste Management

About Tara:

As senior vice president, field operations for Waste Management, Tara Hemmer has responsibility for all operations in the southern part of North America, including oversight of collection, disposal, recycling and landfills. She is a member of the Company’s senior leadership team, led by Jim Fish, president and chief executive officer.

Hemmer joined the company in 1999 and progressed through various leadership roles across North America including vice president of disposal operations, area vice president for the Greater Mid-Atlantic Area, and most recently senior vice president operations, safety and environmental compliance. She serves on the board of the Environmental Education and Research Foundation.

Hemmer graduated from Cornell University with a Bachelor of Science in Civil and Environmental Engineering.

Conference Topics Include: