Stephanie Barger is the Director of Market Transformation & Development – Zero Waste programs for U.S. Green Building Council.
Miss Barger formed the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council (USZWBC) in January of 2012 to meet the growing need for educational resources, peer-to-peer networking and third-party certification for businesses across the nation.
She brings over 25 years of experience in environmental stewardship, employee training, management consulting and business relationship development. She received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from San Diego State University. In her spare time, she raises guide dog puppies for the blind and advocates for humane treatment of all creatures great and small.
Prior to USZWBC, she has spent the last 15 years leading Earth Resource Foundation (ERF) which runs a dynamic high school environmental leadership program. ERF’s campaigns include curbing plastic pollution through Zero Waste, native plant restoration, smoke free beaches, watershed management and creating a future that is hopeful. The campaigns have been a huge success because of Miss Barger’s ability to collaborate with a wide and diverse range of community stakeholders (indigenous tribes, interfaith, government, for profit, at-risk youth, trade associations, health, social justice and environmental organizations).
Because of her strong belief that Zero Waste systems and processes can help create a new economy where everyone wins, she developed and launched the ERF “Zero in on Zero Waste – Don’t Let Your Bottom-line go to Waste” business conference and workshop training program in 2005. As a certified trainer with California Resource Recovery Association (CRRA), she teaches a class on Zero Waste Businesses. Some of her clients/partnerships include City of Newport Beach – implementing the Polystyrene Ban at all restaurants; City of Burbank – Zero Waste Plan for the restaurant and grocery store sectors; County of Orange (Pollution Prevention through Zero Waste) and many business clients including St. Joseph’s Heritage Health Care, Whole Foods Market, Reel Chefs Catering and Kean Coffee.
In 2009, ERF was awarded a Federal Stimulus Grant (the California Green Jobs Program in Orange County) to provide training for at-risk youth in Zero Waste and Career Development. She helped write another Department of Labor grant which expanded the CRRA training program to over 500 unemployed and under-employed individuals. The grant also developed a Recycling, Resource Management and Zero Waste certificate and AA degree programs at three community colleges in Southern California. By continuing to collaborate with the grant partners, she hopes to bring this Zero Waste education to high schools and colleges nationwide.