Marc Morgan began his career in waste management at the bottom, when he helped pay his way through college by emptying trash cans. As a freshman at the University of Maine at Fort Kent, Morgan was assigned a work-study job as a campus custodian. Morgan, 49, has come a long way in 30 years. On Friday, he wrapped up a 12-year stint as Lebanon’s solid waste manager. He’s leaving the city to become assistant commissioner of solid waste for Westchester County (N.Y.), which is just north of New York City and has roughly 1 million residents.
His time in Lebanon was well-spent. Morgan is credited with making Lebanon one of the most progressive municipal waste systems in New Hampshire. “He always, always kept up on current technology, current alternatives and looked for ways to actually reduce waste while keeping the level of service our users have come to expect,” said Paula Maville, the city’s longtime deputy city manager who retired in August.
When Morgan first arrived in Lebanon in 2010, the city’s landfill and recycling center was just another cog in the state’s waste management sector. Historically, New Hampshire has accepted trash from other states, putting it at risk of running out of space in its landfills. In 2020, just under half of the waste disposed of in New Hampshire was generated out of state. During his time as solid waste manager, Morgan worked to prevent what he calls Lebanon’s “really valuable hole in the ground” from getting crushed under the weight of trash from neighboring states.