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November 2004

Victor Brown, Recycling Industry Veteran, Dies

Houston, Texas— On September 13, 2004 Victor Brown, a pioneer in the recycling industry, passed away at the age of 91. In 1990 Mr. Brown was inducted into the Waste Age Hall of Fame for his extensive contributions to the advancement of recycling technology.

Mr. Brown attended college at the Illinois Institute of Technology. Mr. Brown’s first career used his metallurgical educational knowledge. His second career used a lifetime of experience to develop innovative automated processes to capture and recycle components of municipal solid waste

In 1942, Mr. Brown joined the Kropp Forge Company in Chicago as chief metallurgist. Under his direction during World War II, Kropp converted its production plant from auto parts to ordnance components such as tank parts, artillery pieces, shot and shells. In 1962 Mr. Brown resigned his positions with Kropp so he could focus his interest on recycling and the solid waste industry.

In 1963, Victor Brown and a group of environmentally driven Chicago investors founded the Metropolitan Resource Conversion Corp. (Metro-Waste) to develop mechanized systems for the automated separation and processing of municipal solid waste. The new systems were innovative in their ability to capture and recycle industrial, commercial or municipal discards. Metro-Waste built and operated municipal solid waste co-composting plants in Largo and Gainesville, Florida and in Houston, Texas.

In 1975, Mr. Brown became president of Resource Conversion Systems, Inc. (RCS) in Houston and continued advancing the development of recycling methods and composites made from municipal solid waste fractions. In 2001 Mr. Brown guided RCS’s acquisition of Granville Composite Products Corporation, a Montreal-based compression molder that possesses a wide range of capabilities for preparing and molding composites from various post-consumer and post-industrial waste plastics.

Mr. Brown is the inventor and co-inventor of 13 patents for processing municipal solid waste, including design of the first high-rate, automated trough composting system and LoVAC, a low velocity air classifier system. During his long and productive career Mr. Brown was also a special consultant to governments on resource recovery technology, marketing and planning. He wrote and published numerous papers and spoke before many groups including U.S. congressional committees on the subject of systemized separation of materials from municipal solid waste for the purpose of converting, upgrading and re-using important commodities.

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