for the 2024 Environmental Achievement Award and Legend of the Environmental Industry Award

Submit your nomination with ease online OR download the PDF form to submit via e-mail

2023 Environmental Achievement Awards

Every year, the EMA hosts our annual Environmental Achievement Awards ceremony.
This event gives us the opportunity to acknowledge, recognize, and award those in the environmental industry for their outstanding efforts in the forward progression for environmental sustainability and change in three ways: student scholarships, individual/company achievement awards, and as introduced in 2018 an individual legend award

The Environmental Achievement Award is awarded to someone who has gone above and beyond in their work within the environmental industry.

This year we honored Caleb Rutledge of Goodwill’s Green Works. As a highly accomplished executive with extensive experience in advertising, marketing strategy, project management, digital media planning and vertical integration, Caleb Rutledge is the current President and CEO of Goodwill’s Green Works. He is responsible for leading the organization in every aspect of the business, including diversifying revenue streams and ensuring profitability while delivering quality service. His responsibilities also include the overall safety initiatives in GGW, GIGD, and commercial sales and operations. As a member of GIGD’s Executive team, he helps set the organization’s strategic direction and contributes to the entire organization’s successful execution of the strategic plan.
Prior to joining GGW, Rutledge held several positions at Habitat for Humanity Detroit including Director of Operations, ReStore Director, and Procurement Manager. During his tenue at Habitat in partnership with the board and CEO, Rutledge was pivotal; in executing and implementing a turnaround strategy. As an aspiring young professional, he recognized the importance of giving back to his community. As a result of his commitment to community, he co-founded the non-profit Legacy Associates Foundation (LAF) which focused on economic empowerment, scholastic achievement, and community involvement.
Goodwill’s Green Works operates as a subsidiary business under Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit (GIGD), providing asset recovery services that help save money and are safe for the environment. Using the commodity market, GGW breaks down scrap material and resells and distributes them for the opportunity at a second life. Some of these materials include cable wiring, transformers, or even household refrigerators! The Green Works facility uses ‘clean room’ processing to help break down and process environmentally sensitive materials. They offer low-cost solutions for labor intensive operations, proudly working with a variety of customers including a 70+ year partnership with DTE Energy. GGW also helps prepare individuals with the skills for middle-class factory employment positions., providing real life experiences in a professional environment. GGW offers both transitional work experience and independent employment opportunities for individuals in their programs and in the community, providing a second chance for employees and trainees to redirect their own lives in a more productive and meaningful way.

Our Legend of the Environmental Industry award aims to recognize individuals for their longstanding positive impact and achievements within the environmental industry. Their demonstrations of forward progression in the push towards environmental change for their accomplished excellence during their tenure are evaluated in five core areas: leadership, innovation, commitment, collaboration, and education.

This year we honored Jack Doheny posthumously and Kay Doheny of JDC, accepted by current CEO Steve Shafer. JDC began as Jack Doheny Supplies in the 1970s and later became known as Jack Doheny Company. It started when Jack Doheny began working in the sewer cleaning industry at a young age, he and his father traveling across the country to demonstrate power sewer cleaners. This exposure combined with industry knowledge led to Jack starting his own company. Its offerings include combination sewer cleaners, pipeline inspection equipment, training, service, and parts. Jack had a huge influence on his industry, including being a founding member of the National Association of Sewer Service Companies. Over time, Jack Doheny Supplies evolved into JDC and grew to become the leading provider of sewer cleaning equipment in the industry. Jack always spoke of being a trusted partner for his customers, and valued investing in the industry and in his customers’ businesses.
Kay Doheny joined the family business in 1984, starting out as administrative support to JDC’s Jet-Vac sales team. Over time she also supported accounting, managed vendor relations, and jumped in wherever needed. When NASSCO’s PACP was launched in the early 2000s her focus shifted to industry relations, conferences, and networking. When Jack passed away in 2016, she moved up from executive vice president to the role of president. Seeing the need to expand the business by bringing in fresh perspectives from outside talent, JDC hired a new president and Kay took over as CEO while also becoming the president of NASSCO from 2016-2017. Continuing in her father’s footsteps, Kay has made it her mission to foster a community of safety, workplace development, education, and expertise.
In 2019, JDC expanded its product line to include electric utility equipment. JDC has continued to set the standard for industry as the #1 provider of industrial cleaning, utility construction, gas and oil, and municipal stock. With fifteen coast-to-coast locations throughout the United States and Canada, JDC continues to serve as a trusted resource to customers by helping them solve challenges and serving as an extension of their success whilst prioritizing staying on top of trends in the industry and create innovative solutions to further assist them. In short: JDC’s goal is to continue to evolve its offerings to support the infrastructure needs of the communities it serves. Jack’s character and commitment to his customers’ success made JDC what it is, and the leadership continues his legacy.
Portions of this text are courtesy of Underground Infrastructure September 2020 Vol. 75 No. 9 and Pumper Magazine’s Business Spotlight, May 2023

In March, members of the EMA volunteer their time to partake in judging the environmental science category of the Science & Engineering Fair of Metro-Detroit. Based on our own judging measures that are similar to the official SEFMD criteria, we evaluate students based on their scientific thought, thoroughness, skill, clarity, and most importantly, creative ability. A student’s ideas and creative outlook on their science fair project speaks on how the future generations view our world and environmental issues from a different perspective.

The EMA would like to thank the Doestch family for their commitment to our environmental science fair scholarship program in honor of the late James Doestch, a true legend in the environmental industry. We are proud to honor three well-deserving students with our 2023 James Doestch Memorial Science Fair Scholarships!


[ Northville High School ]

User-Friendly Defective Solar Cell Detection Using Artificial Intelligence


[ Home School Student ]

Graphene Sand: Unlocking the Potential of Metal Air Batteries


[ Cranbrook Kingswood ]

Is Too Much Road Salt Harmful for the Environment?

THANK YOU to all of this year’s event sponsors!!
Your support is what helps enable us to make this event as truly special as it is, supporting & celebrating those doing great things in the environmental sphere.