Photo By Dirk Webb, MCC Board Member Photo courtesy of Dale Pickett
Green Tire Reclamation is the kind of small business every community needs; the perfect corporate citizen. They care for our environment by re-purposing used tires preventing them from collecting in landfills. They care for those of us who have been sent to the human landfills providing jobs and hope for convicted felons. They care about “doing the right thing.”
Says Dan McKenzie, “I was cutting tires and sending them to a landfill like everyone else. Mike Flanders [Director of Business Development] did some checking and found other options: four million of six million tires were going to landfills and we felt there was a better way…we wanted to make a difference for the environment. Mike discovered the bead wire in tires was going to be a major hurdle yet we found a way to recycle the bead wire and keep the rest of the tire from going to a landfill.”
McKenzie continues, “Mike is amazing. He taught me a lot about people. I pitched trash on a garbage truck for 15 years. Mike is the brains of the outfit, I’m more hands on and together we’re creating a market for shredded tires. Shipping out of state is not cost efficient. We’re actively promoting tires chips for septic systems and other uses.”
Green Tire is aggressively creating a market for aggregate materials in the State of Indiana. They are soon to get their first IDEM Legitimate Use Permit. They’ve also applied for and received a Metal Salvage License taking them into a whole different area. Creating strategic partnerships with metal recyclers, Green Tire is weeks away from buying Non Ferrous Metals – copper, brass, aluminum cans at their Fairview location.
Just as vital, Green Tire Reclamation attempts to reclaim people. Says McKenzie, “We hire guys from House of Hope. I came through the House of Hope 25 or 30 years ago and it saved my life. It’s not easy. We train them and then they move on. That’s not a bad thing either.”
Why here in Madison County? - “We had offers to locate in other counties but we’re from here and our families are from here. We believe Madison County and Anderson are making a huge comeback. Kyle Morey and the Chamber have been behind us. Mayor Smith, Greg Winkler, Karen Pettigrew, Michael Frischkorn, Frank Owens and others have helped with permits and navigating City Hall. They have given us the freedom and encouragement to operate without interference. Flagship Enterprise Center has been huge. Adam Hoeksema and Adam Tidrow…we wouldn’t have some of the equipment we have without them. Where would we be without our attorney, Max Howard? There are so many others.”
What are your goals for 2015? - “To get the first permits to make us the first green county for rubber in the state. That makes us eligible for grants and helps keep waste tires out of landfills.”
Who do you consider the most courageous person in history and why? – “Henry Ford. He had huge ideas…selling everybody an affordable idea…against all odds…everyone said ‘you can’t do this.’ He was courageous because he didn’t give up.”
If you were to take that person on a tour of your business what one thing would you want them to see? “Instead of giving in and sending those materials to landfills where they're bad for the environment, we’ve hung in there and looked for greener alternatives.”
What was the defining moment when you knew your business was making a difference? - “We try to operate our business the way we live our lives. We try to always do the right thing. We hear, ‘that’s not a good business move,’ yet it’s the right thing to do. We believe in treating people right and hanging on to our values. There’s not one defining moment, we think our integrity has made a difference all along. Making jobs for guys that may not get a second chance may not make a huge difference to others, but it can be life changing for them.”
Daniel and Diana McKenzie
Green Tire Reclamation, Inc.
2506 Fairview St Anderson, IN 46016
Launched as the Madison County Chamber's theme during the 2015 Annual Awards Gala, #COURAGEOUS is a platform to tell really good stories of really good people in business. It is a seamless collection of the thoughts, dreams, doubts, fears and inevitably the triumph of perseverance, hope and faith. These are the stories of business leaders in Madison County who have given us a gathering place or rather a rallying point to remind us that together as a community we can achieve much, both for ourselves and for the generations to come. #Courageous - yes we are.
Read more #COURAGEOUS stories here