Urban mining lessens environmental impact, rids landfills of reusable materials, lowers energy costs and conserves natural resources.
John S. Shegerian is the Chairman and CEO of Electronic Recyclers International® (ERI) (electronicrecyclers.com) and ERI’s subsidiary organizations, 1-800-RECYCLING.com and urbanmining.org. Established in 2002, ERI collects and recycles electronic waste, specializing in the sustainable dismantling of consumer electronic items. Under Shegerian’s stewardship, ERI has fast become the largest and most efficient recycler of electronic waste in the world. ERI is licensed to de-manufacture and recycle televisions, computer monitors, computers, and virtually all other types of electronic equipment. ERI developed and houses the largest e-waste crusher in the world and processes more than 120 million pounds of electronic waste annually at its locations in California, Colorado, Indianapolis, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Texas and Washington.
Shegerian is also host of XM Satellite Radio’s “Green is Good” (greenisgoodradio.com), the nation’s #1 rated environmentally themed radio program, in which he interviews celebrities, company leaders and green nonprofits regarding environmental issues and opportunities. Guests have included Wal-Mart, FedEx, Hewlett Packard, Verizon, Enterprise Rent A Car, and many more.
A Board Member of the American Sustainable Business Council, Shegerian’s columns on the subject of sustainability can be read regularly in Environmental Leader. His talks on sustainability, innovation and the benefits of running a green business have moved and inspired prestige audiences from China, India, and throughout Europe, to the World Bank, United Nations and the White House.
Prior to his work at ERI, Shegerian had co-founded financialaid.com, one of the most successful student loan companies in the country. While at financialaid.com, he also created rateyourcampus.com (a college student polling and feedback community) which then led to the creation of campusdirt.com (which evolved into the most relevant and trafficked college search engine). Also, campusclix.com was created and became one of the first college social networking properties on the web. In October 2004, Shegerian and his partners sold financialaid.com and all the aforementioned affiliated properties to Education Lending Group, which was purchased in February 2005 by CIT (NYSE: CIT).
For his work with ERI, Shegerian has been named the Clean Tech Entrepreneur of the Year for Northern California by Ernst & Young. He received the “Innovator of the Year” award from the International Electronics Recycling Conference & Expo (IERCE) for his development of 1-800-Recycling.com and its role in democratizing the recycling process nationwide. Shegerian was also named the 2012 recipient of the Harold Zinkin Entrepreneur of the Year Award commemorating a proven track record of leading a business through several years of success. ERI has also won “Recycler of the Year” and the “Industry Pioneer” award from the IERCE.
Shegerian is driven by his commitment to innovate and develop companies that benefit and inspire others and are socially responsible. Shegerian has a 25 year track record of quickly converting start-ups into large, highly successful business enterprises.
Shegerian serves alongside California state legislators as a member of the California Commission for Jobs and Economic Growth and was appointed to serve on the Governor’s Gang Advisory Committee, focused on providing the State’s top legislators with guidance pertaining to policies geared toward the reduction of gang and youth violence. No stranger to “recycling lives” and serving up second chances, In 1993, Shegerian had co-founded Homeboy Tortillas and Homeboy Industries, which continues to serve as a paradigm for urban renewal in America and was awarded the New York Stock Exchange “Building for the Future” Award for creating new jobs and opportunities for gang-impacted youth in post-riot Los Angeles. Shegerian is also the recipient of the prestigious “Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Award,” presented by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Unity Committee to businessmen working to provide compassionate solutions for society’s problems.
Si Robins is an editor and writer based in Portland. With experience in magazine and Web writing, editing and content development, he has developed a varied set of skills and topics of interest. Prior to his work on 1-800-RECYCLING.com, Green is Good and UrbanMining.org, Si covered eco-friendly design, sustainability and many other topics over the course of his career. Si studied journalism at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, and won multiple awards for stories written during his time there.
Si’s green-related interests include municipal recycling program education and awareness, green building and design and energy conservation, particularly in high-tech devices and appliances.
Lead Multimedia Developer
Eric Husted is the Lead Multimedia Developer at Electronic Recyclers International. Eric has brought new ideas, direction and a youthful talent to the company. Eric performs graphic and website design, video editing and animation for dozens of new and ongoing projects in the company.