Team

Allen Langdon – Chief Executive Officer

As CEO, Allen is responsible for leading Circular Materials through the development of Ontario’s new blue box recycling system while expanding the organization’s operations into other provinces, starting with New Brunswick. His mission is to support producers with a robust not-for-profit service offering that advances the circular economy, delivers national harmonization of extended producer responsibility (EPR) services and harnesses competitive procurement to provide the best value for producers.

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Prior to joining Circular Materials, Allen served as the President and CEO of Return-It, British Columbia’s very successful used beverage container management program in Canada. In this role, Allen oversaw the modernization of Return-It’s collection network, which consists of more than 170 collection sites, including Return-It depots, Express Plus and Express & GO stations. Return-It has routinely exceeded a 75% recovery rate for used beverage containers in British Columbia, and its network has supported the collection of new materials, including waste electrical and electronic equipment.

Allen also served as the Managing Director for Recycle BC, the first 100% EPR program for paper and packaging in North America where industry assumed full financial and managerial responsibility for the residential recycling system.

Allen currently serves as a Board member of the National Zero Waste Council, Advisory Council Member for the Canada Plastics Pact, and Advisory Board Member for the Washington State Recycling Development Centre.

Glenda Gies – Co-Lead (Strategy and Operations)

Glenda is a policy, governance, and recycling specialist with more than 40 years of experience supporting municipal governments, regulatory authorities, and producers with the development of recycling programs.

From 1979 to 1989, Glenda worked with Durham Region and its eight lower tier municipalities to introduce recycling services to residents and businesses across the Region. Between 1989 and 1992, Glenda implemented the first household food waste collection program to support research that led to a patented Canadian in-vessel composting technology.

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In April 2003, Glenda joined Waste Diversion Ontario as Executive Director, providing oversight of industry funding organizations in the development and implementation of diversion programs under the Waste Diversion Act, 2002 until December 2010.

From 2011 to 2016, Glenda led project teams to develop an extended producer responsibility program for residential packaging and printed paper for Multi-Material British Columbia (now Recycle BC) and a shared responsibility stewardship program for residential packaging and printed paper for Multi-Material Stewardship Western.

From November 2016, to July, 2020, Glenda chaired the Board of Directors of the Resource Productivity and Recovery Authority, the delegated administrative authority responsible for overseeing the wind up of industry funding organizations and enforcement of individual producer responsibility in Ontario.

Usman Valiante – Co-Lead (Commercial Strategy and Policy)

Usman is a senior policy analyst and commercial strategist with 27 years of experience in the fields of environmental science and economics, corporate and commercial strategy, public policy, regulatory and institutional design, advocacy, negotiation, consultation and communications.

Today, Usman is the Implementation Co-Lead for Circular Materials as well as a Technical Advisor to the Canada Plastics Pact.

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Usman has developed a number of Canadian Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) policies, regulatory frameworks, programs and circular economy systems including those for waste electronics and electrical equipment (WEEE), municipal household and special waste (MHSW), beverage containers, printed paper and packaging (PPP) , pharmaceuticals and sharps, used tires, batteries and end-of-life vehicles.

In Canada, Usman has provided public policy advice with specific focus on environmental regulatory design to Environment and Climate Change Canada, the governments of British Columbia, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Ontario, the Canadian Council of Minister of Environment and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.

Shane Buckingham - Strategic Communications and Producer Relations Lead

Shane is a strategic communications professional and policy specialist with more than a decade of experience working in federal and provincial politics, print media and industry.

In government, he served as the press secretary to Canada’s Environment Minister and communicated major announcements, including the release of Canada’s 2030 emissions target.

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At Queen’s Park, Shane was a communications and policy advisor for the Official Opposition. In this role, Shane provided strategic advice on responding to government regulatory proposals and bills, including the Waste Reduction Act in 2013 and the Waste-Free Ontario Act in 2016.

After politics, Shane was Director of Communications at the Ontario Waste Management Association and the Senior Director of Sustainability at the Canadian Beverage Association. In his role at the CBA, Shane represented the beverage sector in Ontario’s Blue Box Mediation Process in 2019 and the province’s Producer Blue Box Working Group in 2020/21.

Prior to politics, Shane was a journalist. He covered municipal politics for the St. Catharines Standard and wrote for a national consumer magazine about real estate investing and market trends.

Shane is a Director on the Board of the Alberta Beverage Container Recycling Corporation and has served in this role since April 2018.

Daniel Lantz – Recycling Operations Specialist

Dan is a recycling expert with more than 30 years’ experience in the operation of material recovery facilities (MRFs) both in Canada and the United States. He spent six years as the Vice President of Operations for Cascades Recovery, overseeing single stream and multi-stream MRFs across Canada, including the commissioning of the City of Calgary and Durham Region MRFs.

Dan has completed numerous MRF operations optimization projects for public and private sector clients across Canada and the U.S., increasing throughput and product quality while reducing the cost of operations. These projects resulted in millions of dollars in operational savings.

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Dan served as the Director of Technical Services at Stewardship Ontario, where he played an instrumental role on the team that developed the first Blue Box Program Plan in Ontario in 2002.

Dan was the strategic advisor to the Canadian Plastics Industry Association for almost 30 years and has acted as advisor to the Paper and Paperboard Packaging Environmental Council since 1991.

Dan served as the Chief Operating Officer for Green by Nature, which included the development and oversight of the operations of all facilities across British Columbia in the transition from municipally run to privately run post-collection.

Recently, Dan was the only Canadian Technical Expert to the Consumer Goods Forum in the development of the Golden Design Rules for plastics packaging. Dan currently serves as a Technical Expert to the Canada Plastics Pact. He holds a Doctorate in Business Sustainability: The Role of EPR in Packaging Design.

Chris van Rossem – Technical and Implementation Advisor

Chris is an international expert in the circular economy and product-focused environmental management, policy, programs and tools, including; extended producer responsibility (EPR), design for environment (DfE), life cycle analysis (LCA), environmental product communication, end-of-life management, environmental management systems (EMS), and environmental performance indicators.

Chris has extensive experience with environmental data management, municipal recycling programs, product stewardship consultation, EPR program development and regulatory oversight.

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Prior to joining the Circular Materials project team, Chris was Director, Technical Advisory Services at Canadian Stewardship Services Alliance from 2014-2021. Prior to that, he worked as a technical advisor to Stewardship Ontario, as well as the Manager, Research and Policy at Waste Diversion Ontario, the predecessor to RPRA.

Chris is currently a Technical Advisor to the Canada Plastics Pact. He has a PhD in Industrial Environmental Economics from the International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics (IIIEE) at Lund University, Sweden.

Ron Soreanu – Strategic Advisor, Strategic Communications and Producer Relations

Ron Soreanu is a public affairs expert and executive advisor with nearly 20 years in the public, private and non-profit sectors.

Previously, Ron was the vice president of public affairs, communications and sustainability for The Coca-Cola Company (Canada) and a member of the executive leadership team in Canada.

Ron is also the former chair of the board of the Canadian Beverage Association and sat as a board member of Stewardship Ontario, and the Alberta Beverage Container Recycling Corporation.

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