W4R - Women for Reduction, Reuse, Recycling, and Rethinking Strategies for Managing Materials

What is W4R?

W4R stands for Women for Reduction, Reuse, Recycling, and Rethinking Strategies for Managing Materials

W4R was started in June 2018 as a way to connect and unite women in the 4R industry. Across New York State, the country and the world, women are leading successful governmental agencies, businesses, and non-profit organizations in waste reduction, reuse, and recycling (3R’s). They are leaders in "Rethinking" and reimagining how to manage materials in a more sustainable manner (that 4th R). These women make up this committee as well as women starting or considering a career in R4 and are looking for ways to learn, connect, and take their education, training, or career to the next level.

W4R is a NYSAR3 Committee, working on connecting women of all stages of their education and careers through a variety of in person and online opportunities. We have speakers, panels, group dialogue, mentorship, and professional development. Since 2018, the core of what we do is to provide a platform to share our stories and experiences working in the industry. We believe that our collective stories will empower us to continue transforming our industry through female leadership. All are welcome to join us.


Who are we?

We are women in the 4R industry from public and private sectors. We are men that value women and minority leaders’ perspectives. 

We are LGBTQIA members of the 4R industry.

We are all people that believe in a more equitable future of the 4R industry.


Our Values

  • We value a more sustainable and inclusive approach towards managing materials. 
  • We believe women working together can enhance the industry as a whole.
  • We welcome any person that values women leaders and perspectives.
  • We value waste reduction, reuse, and recycling over landfilling or incineration.
  • We value innovation in the SMM industry.
  • We believe women have a unique contribution to the workplace and towards building communities.
  • We provide a safe space for women to share and learn from each other.
  • We promote equality for people of all races, ethnicities, and the LGBTQIA community.
  • We invite all people to join us in the effort to advance women in the 4R’s.


Our Work

Facilitated Dialogue. Mentoring. Skill-sharing. Professional and Leadership Development. Networking. Support.


Get Involved

W4R Chair
Melissa Young 

Members: 90+ members included on all monthly e-mails, many help with planning various programs

Past Meetings & Guest Speakers

Meet the Auth-HER - "Resisting Garbage" by Lily Baum Pollans
June 9, 2022

View Recording


Understanding Management & Leadership - Presentation by Mark Lichtenstein
May 13, 2021

View Presentation Slides


Recycling 101 - Presentation By Resa Dimino 
March 18, 2021

View Presentation Slides