A culture of learning and innovation
Learning and development is another area of focus at Rubicon. In 2020, we partnered with Lessonly to launch an internal learning management system. Managers within the company can create and assign lessons on software use or soft skills such as time management. The platform includes a workforce development program that touches on continuing education, allowing for cross-skills training for promotions or job transitions—further proof of our commitment to investing in our employees’ lifelong career advancement.
George Washington Carver Award
Each year, we recognize one employee with the George Washington Carver Award to spur innovation on our teams. Rubicon employees are given an opportunity to nominate a fellow employee who they believe exemplifies incredible creativity and leadership, and who upholds George Washington Carver’s legacy of innovation and challenging the status quo. Carver was one of this nation’s foremost inventors and it could be said that he was one of the early adopters of Rubicon’s mission to end waste. He created more than 325 different methods for repurposing the humble peanut, taking fibers from the peanut plant to make different types of paper, early plastics, and dyes. “George Washington Carver was the embodiment of excellence and creativity, and through this award we honor an employee each year who exhibits that spirit,” says Rubicon’s Founder and CEO, Nate Morris. The 2021 winner is Jordan Pilsch, and we congratulate her and prior-year winners, Jason Jones and Ryan Cooper. Winners receive a $10,000 cash prize.
George Washington Carver was the embodiment of excellence and creativity, and through this award we honor an employee each year who exhibits that spirit.
Rubicon X-Labs: A culture of research and development
Our Intellectual Property committee is tasked with making sure that we collect, document, and protect all intellectual property created by our employees. We incentivize this innovation by awarding employees cash rewards at various stages of the patent application process. These programs and the culture inside Rubicon are driving the big ideas that will reimagine the waste industry for decades to come. We are also seeing the latest thinking on artificial intelligence reflected heavily in the work of our Research and Development (R&D) teams.
Ryan Cooper, Director of Circular Economy and Organics Recycling Lead, created a patent for a waste receptacle with a false bottom. “I have the U.S. patent award letter mounted on my wall,” says Ryan. “It is amazing how many patents the tremendous folks at Rubicon have obtained. So many of them contain groundbreaking innovative ideas that will someday shape our reality.”