The American Zinc Recycling leadership team consists of industry veterans and seasoned professionals who are helping us create and maintain a sustainable future. Learn more about each of them here.

Wayne Isaacs

Interim President & Chief Executive Officer

Wayne Isaacs joined AZR as President & CEO in 2020 after serving as our Chairman of the Board since 2017. Throughout his 35 years of industry experience, he served as Asset President at various subsidiaries of BHP Billiton, running operations in Australia, Canada, South Africa, and the United States. He also held Vice President roles at Peabody Coal Company and Kerr McGee Coal Company. Currently, Mr. Isaacs serves on the board of Drummond Company, Inc.


  • Bachelor of Science, Mining, University of Missouri – Rolla
  • Bachelor of Science, Civil Engineering Technology, Southern Illinois University
  • Master of Science, Mining Engineering, Southern Illinois University

Stephen Bishop

Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

Stephen Bishop joined the AZR team in 2019. With 25 years of management and financial experience, he most recently served as President and CFO of Arsenal Resources. He was also an investment banker for 11 years with DLJ, Credit Suisse, and Deutsche Bank. He served 7 years as an officer in the US Navy.


  • Bachelor of Science, US Naval Academy
  • Master of Business Administration, UCLA Anderson School

Michael J. Griffin

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

Michael J. Griffin joined AZR in January 2017 and adds 33 years of experience in the metals industry to the leadership team. Before AZR, he was the Aluminum President at Noranda; VP, COO, and CEO of Ormet Aluminum; and held various roles at Alcoa and Reynolds Metals, including Plant Manager and other operations, technical, and maintenance roles in the US and Canada.


  • Bachelor of Science, Electrical and Power Engineering, Clarkson University

James A. Totera

Senior Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer

James A. Totera joined the company in 1997 as Vice President – Sales and Marketing. Initially tasked with managing the steel mill recycling segment of the business, his responsibilities evolved into the supervision of all aspects of company sales, including zinc metal, zinc oxide, and zinc powder sales.

Before joining AZR, Jim spent 15 years in sales positions within the steel industry, most notably as the General Manager of Sales at Insul Company. His experience provides him with a deep understanding of the metal and steel markets.


  • Bachelor of Arts, Economics, Administrative Management Science, and Psychology, Carnegie Mellon University

Bruce Morgan

Senior Vice President – Human Resources and Environmental, Health and Safety

Bruce Morgan joined AZR in May 2010, bringing 20 years of industry experience to the role. He formerly worked as the Director of Human Resources – North America for the steel mill services division of Harsco Corporation. Prior to that, Bruce spent 10 years with Vesuvius USA as the Director of Human Resources for both its steel and foundry divisions. He was part of the start-up team for the construction of the Gallatin Steel Company.


  • Bachelor of Science, Industrial and Labor Relations, Cornell University

Gary R. Whitaker

Senior Vice President – General Counsel and Secretary

Gary R. Whitaker joined AZR in December 2011. He formerly served as Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary for GrafTech International and Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary for the US operations of SK Group.


  • Bachelor of Arts, UCLA
  • Juris Doctor, University of Houston Law School

Frank Vallelunga

Vice President – Controller

Frank Vallelunga joined AZR in 1991. Throughout his tenure, he’s held various positions in accounting and finance, and served as the General Manager of Specialty Products. Prior to AZR, he held staff positions at Ernst & Young and Geac Computer Corporation.


  • Bachelor of Arts, Accounting, Washington and Jefferson College
  • Master of Business Administration, Robert Morris College
  • Certified Public Accountant

Timothy R. Basilone

Vice President – Environmental Affairs

Tim Basilone joined AZR in 2010, bringing 30 years of experience in environmental programs and regulation to our company. Previously, he held progressively more responsible positions at Koppers, Inc and Westinghouse Electric Corporation, and was an exploration geologist for Marathon Oil Company.


  • Bachelor of Science, Geology, College of Wooster
  • Master of Science, Geology and Planetary Science, University of Pittsburgh
  • Registered Professional Geologist, Pennsylvania

Lee Burkett

Vice President – Engineering

Since Lee Burkett joined AZR in 2006, he’s had several operational and engineering roles. He has 40 years of metals industry experience behind him, and he’s previously held Plant and General Manager-level roles with Universal Stainless & Alloy Projects, J&L Specialty Steel, TIMET, and Lukens Steel.


  • Bachelor of Science, Mechanical Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University