Appointed in March 2014 by Mayor Bill de Blasio, Commissioner Kathryn Garcia leads the nation’s largest municipal waste management agency and its 9,700 uniformed and civilian employees. Under her direction, they keep New York City healthy, safe and clean by collecting, recycling and disposing waste, cleaning streets and vacant lots, and clearing snow and ice. After her appointment as the Department’s 43rd commissioner, Garcia set an ambitious long-term goal for New York City: send zero waste to landfills by 2030. From promoting electronics and textile recycling to enhancing composting programs that eliminate food from the waste stream, the Department of Sanitation is a leader in helping New York City achieve the City’s sustainability goals.
A lifelong New Yorker, Commissioner Garcia launched her career as an intern at the Department of Sanitation. Before returning to the Department as Commissioner, she served as Chief Operating Officer at the New York City Department of Environmental Protection, where she was responsible for the operation of the City’s water supply, water and sewer system, and wastewater treatment plants. Prior to her service at DEP, Garcia was Vice President at Appleseed. Commissioner Garcia earned her bachelor’s degree at the University of Wisconsin.