2021 Richard I. Stessel Waste Management Award

Richard I. Stessel (19562001) was a Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of South Florida and an avid A&WMA enthusiast. He influenced A&WMA’s Technical Council to include greener, energy-efficient, and integrated engineering solutions in solid and hazardous waste management, using materials science and engineering together with industrial ecology, environmental, and subsurface engineering, along with geological science in innovative solid and hazardous waste management. His vision of the environmental engineering cycle always considered recyclable materials, resource recovery in the matrix of pollution abatement, remediation, restoration, and disposal. Established in 2012, the Richard I. Stessel Award is presented annually by the Association for outstanding achievement in the engineering and science of waste management excellence. The recipient of this award must demonstrate technical accomplishments considered to be major contributions in innovative strategies, treatment, recycling, reuse, or engineering/scientific excellence in the principles of resource recovery engineering and waste processing waste management.

A&WMA presents the 2021 Richard I. Stessel Waste Management Award to the following individuals:

Lee Lundberg
Timothy Townsend

Timothy Townsend is a professor of Environmental Engineering Sciences in the University of Florida’s Engineering School of Sustainable Infrastructure and Environment. He teaches and conducts research in the discipline of sustainable materials management (formerly solid and hazardous waste management). Courses developed and instructed by Dr. Townsend include solid and hazardous waste management; beneficial use of solid wastes; construction and demolition debris management; and the science, economics, and policy of recycling. In his senior level capstone engineering class, he has taken students to Haiti, Honduras, Costa Rica, Mexico, Guatemala, and Colombia as part of their design projects. He recently led the Department of Environmental Engineering Science’s efforts to transform their undergraduate curriculum to promote a program-long immersion in and integration of modern discipline practices.

Professor Townsend is well published in the scientific literature regarding waste management and is best known for his research related to electronic wastes, bioreactor landfills, construction and demolition debris, waste beneficial use, and recycling of waste-to-energy ash. His latest book is titled Sustainable Practices for Landfill Design and Operation (Spring Publishing Group). His research group receives support from a broad array of funding sources including the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, the Hinkley Center for Solid and Hazardous Waste Management, a host of local government solid waste management departments, the Construction and Demolition Recycling Association, and numerous private companies. He is a registered Professional Engineer in Florida and is principal at the firm Innovative Waste Consulting Services. A description of Dr. Townsend’s research program can be found at and his publications are listed at

Timothy Townsend

Richard I. Stessel Waste Management Award