Innovation & Change Award

Mark Feist

Facilities Management

The Facilities Grounds department oversees the university’s waste hauling and removal services. In 2017, these services were contracted to a professional waste hauler and AU was consistently spending more than $200,000 per year. We were on the contractor’s schedule which often meant that we stockpiled the refuse - unsightly and a pest nuisance.

Mark Feist thought we could improve our service and save money by doing the waste hauling ourselves. Mark developed a plan that included hiring a Zero Waste manager, registering with the District of Columbia as a waste hauler, purchasing a hauling vehicle, developing a campus hauling route, establishing vendors to accept our refuse, and hiring a CDL qualified driver. It took a year to execute the plan.

The Facilities department began its self-hauling program in fall 2018. At the campus move-in, cardboard and other refuse were typically stockpiled and selectively placed around campus. Due to the university’s self-hauling procedures, there were no limits to the number of runs to the local trash acceptance facility which eliminated the stockpiling of cardboard and refuse. It was a tremendous improvement with a positive impact on the community.

The self-hauling program has made great improvements in the overall quality of service. Our percentage of waste that is recycled has steadily improved. The university has saved over $100K annually, cutting the operational cost of waste hauling nearly in half.

Congratulations to Mark Feist for being selected as the recipient of the 2020 Innovation & Change Staff Award and thank you for all that you do for American University.

Innovation & Change Award Nominees

Congratulations to the 2020 Innovation & Change Award nominees!

Although the nominees were not selected for this year's award, their outstanding work did not go unnoticed. Thank you for all you do!

  • Natalia Abel
  • Kristof Aldenderfer
  • David Barker
  • Ryan Cassidy
  • Amy Dacey
  • David Draper
  • Nina Enagonio
  • Mark Feist
  • Tiana Hakimzadeh
  • Calvin Haney
  • Jordan Harris
  • Ashleigh Huseth
  • Charles LeGette
  • Lisa Manning
  • Stacey Miles
  • Liza Morris
  • Tyler Orton
  • Richard Parker
  • Carmen Rodriguez
  • Ashley Rozendaal
  • Lara Schwartz
  • Ebonie Smith
  • Myranda Thomson
  • Adam Whitehurst
  • Brianna Williams
  • Justin Williams
  • Ayana Wilson
  • Joni Wiredu
  • Cole Wrampelmeier