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Jay Price

Sustainability Manager

Jay Price has a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a Master’s degree in Bioregional Planning from Utah State University, as well as an MBA from the University of Memphis. Jay was the Recycling Education Coordinator at Utah State University for three years prior to arriving at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville in 2007. Jay started out as the Environmental Coordinator at UT, coordinating the budding recycling program and the residence hall sustainability competition. As the program evolved to include more staff, AmeriCorps members, student workers, Solid Waste Management, Universal Waste management, and the UT Composting Facility, Jay was promoted to Recycling Manager in 2013. With the merger of UT Recycling and the Office of Sustainability, Jay was promoted to Sustainability Manager in 2019.

Khann Chov

Khann Chov

Recycling Supervisor

Khann received a Master’s degree in Environmental Education from Lesley University and a Bachelor’s degree in Business and Chinese from the University of Tennessee.  After graduating from UT in 2004, she began two years of service with AmeriCorps, focusing on waste reduction and water quality education in Knox County Schools.  She served at Beardsley Community Farm as its director and farm manager for eleven years before joining the Office of Sustainability in November 2019 to oversee its recycling and zero waste initiatives. She is excited and proud to join the Office of Sustainability, to continue working with students, AmeriCorps members, and a dedicated staff to help the university reach its sustainability goals.

Wayne Mason in a selfie with the compost site in the background.

Wayne Mason

Compost Operations Specialist

Wayne spent his first 17 years growing up in Fort Worth, Texas before enlisting in the US Navy in 2011. He went to the Naval Nuclear Power Training school for two and a half years, specializing in aircraft carrier reactor technology,  hazardous materials training, and mechanical engineering. Afterwards, he was stationed onboard the USS Carl Vinson in San Diego, operating in an engineering setting in the pacific. After being medically retired in 2015, he and his wife moved to Knoxville, TN to pursue civilian life and start a family. Wayne initially began work as a stonemason, operating heavy equipment and training to become a foreman until medical reasons forced him to leave the construction field in 2017. He then began studying in physics at UT, but found a passion for sustainability as a student worker for UT’s Compost Site. When the position to supervise the compost operations presented itself, Wayne jumped on the opportunity to transform the muddy Compost Site into a proper Compost Facility. He is excited to bring awareness and much-needed improvements to UT’s composting program.

Taylor Hamlin

Compost Coordinator

“The smellier, the better” Originally from Dayton, Ohio, Taylor chose UT to finish her Bachelor’s of Forestry. After graduation Taylor briefly moved to Minnesota before coming back “home” to Knoxville. Remembering several classmates who served in AmeriCorps during school and boasted about their time, Taylor realized that it was the right choice. Coming back to UT was even easier. At the compost site Taylor acts as a liaison and compost assistant. In her free time she likes to hike, backpack, camp, go caving, and anything to do with the water.

Leah Fontaine

Outreach Coordinator

Leah hails from Byhalia, Mississippi and received a BA in Anthropology and Religious Studies from The University of Alabama. She planned to go to graduate school for Museum Studies but found herself unsure of the career path she wanted in the future. While searching online for other opportunities, she found AmeriCorps! Her passion has always been to educate and make a difference, so she felt like this was the perfect opportunity for her. She has loved working at the University of Tennessee so far and is getting used to saying Go Vols! In her spare time, she enjoys crocheting and making things for her hamsters.

Cassie Austin

Academic Engagement Coordinator

Cassie is originally from Durham, North Carolina and recently graduated from North Carolina State University with a BS in Environmental Engineering. In college, she was involved with various environmental organizations, including the Sustainability Stewards and Food Recovery Network. This year, she hopes to further develop the Sustainability Internship Program and help students find a passion for sustainability no matter what degree they are pursuing. She is passionate about environmental education and loves to teach others about how to recycle and compost. When not working, she enjoys hiking, drinking coffee, and finding good deals while thrift shopping.

Heather Brinton

Heather Brinton

Alternative Transportation Coordinator

An alum of the University of Tennessee, Heather Brinton is thrilled to be returning to Knoxville as the new Alternative Transportation Coordinator for the UT Office of Sustainability. After receiving her undergraduate degree in Sustainability, Heather went on to obtain her Master’s degree in Sustainability from Lipscomb University. While in school, Heather volunteered alongside several AmeriCorps members and was always inspired by the passion they showed for their service. It was the dedication of those previous service members that guided Heather into applying for a CAC AmeriCorps position. As Alternative Transportation Coordinator, she hopes to improve the environmental health of Rocky Top by way of new and exciting transportation initiatives at UT.

Leah McCord

Leah McCord

Social Impact Coordinator, Grow Lab & Free Store Administrator

Leah grew up and still lives on a farm in Maryville, TN. She is currently finishing a degree in Anthropology & Religious Studies with a focus on socially sustainable communities. She loves books; quirky, dark comedies; tea; solo traveling; and her gaggle of nieces, nephews, and godchildren. Leah is very passionate about sustainable agriculture, food justice, issues surrounding women and children, and living a purposeful life. She hates unnecessary packaging, cilantro, and scented candles more than is probably good for anyone.

Annalisa Tarizzo

Annalisa Tarizzo

Program Development Specialist

Originally from the Chicagoland area, Annalisa studied Italian and French with a minor in Global Sustainability at the University of Michigan. Near the end of her time at Michigan, she realized that environmental work and sustainability are her true passions, so she applied to AmeriCorps to gain real-world experience in the field she’s planning to pursue in the future. She loves playing guitar, backpacking, and traveling whenever she can.

Jillian LentzJillian Lentz

Zero Waste Coordinator

Drawn to the green spaces of Knoxville and availability of environmental courses, Jillian moved from Clarksville, Tennessee to attend UT. After graduating with a degree in Geology and Environmental Studies in 2018, she was hired at a local non-profit called Three³ to help research the health benefits of weatherizing homes. Her coworker, a CAC AmeriCorps alumnus, spoke highly of their experience and encouraged applying. The position of Zero Waste Coordinator with UT’s Office of Sustainability caught her attention as her study of interest is food waste. During her term, Jillian wants to make strides toward achieving a 50% diversion rate for the university by 2030.


Full team after meeting


Student Assistants