New Sanitation Commissioner, Kathryn Garcia, Will Focus on Sustainability

March 16, 2014 Updated: July 18, 2015

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio appointed the new commissioner for Department of Sanitation, Kathryn Garcia, on the weekend of March 15 and 16.

Garcia was previously the Chief Operating Officer at the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) where she managed the city’s water supply, sewer operations, and wastewater, with a staff of 4,000 employees. She was also in charge of a $1.9 billion four-year operating budget.

“This is some of the toughest, most demanding work in our city—and Kathryn has what it takes to do this department and our city proud,” de Blasio said in a release.

Prior to working for the DEP, Garcia worked at the New York City Department of Finance, the Local Initiatives Support Corporation, and Appleseed, a non-profit consulting firm and advocacy organization.

The new DSNY Commissioner plans to use innovative approaches to sustainability to help the city reach PlaNYC’s goals, and will focus on the waste diversion rate through recycling, composting, and reuse programs.

“I am committed to strengthening and expanding DSNY’s programs to deliver these critical services to every resident and business, in every neighborhood. We’ll do it consistently, effectively and equitably, and we will seek out every opportunity to do it better and more sustainably,” Garcia said.

Former DSNY Commissioner John Doherty worked as head of the department for over 50 years.