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National Recycling Day with David Padron

NHA Communications Team  |  November 19, 2021
Nov. 15 marked National Recycling Day 2021, a day David Padron, Senior People Services Business Partner at National Heritage Academies (NHA), is passionate about every day of the year.  
The first realization Padron had regarding his passion for the environment came to him in college. “I took an environmental science course which spooked me a little,” said a Padron. “That summer I worked at a water treatment plant which really opened my eyes to water consumption. Living in Michigan, it’s easy to take water for granted where we are spoiled by the Great Lakes.”
A few years ago he visited Cape Town, South Africa, where the water crisis was very evident. He remembers all public faucets were labeled to remind consumers of their water usage. Since his trip he’s been more conscious of his own water consumption.
In addition to water conservation, Padron does a lot of other little things to be kind to the planet, including following a vegetarian diet for the past few years, and slowly cutting more and more animal products from his lifestyle. He attributes these changes to the fact that the meat industry is a major contributor of greenhouse gasses.
“I’ve also started composting during the pandemic and that has been neat,” he said. “I get a little bit of joy rotating the pile and watching the progress.”
His advice to those who are interested in starting a sustainable lifestyle is to start small. “It can be as easy as Meatless Mondays,” he said,” or using a reusable grocery bag.”
Padron has many passions, including being an avid mountain biker. He has also taken backpacking trips to Olympic National Park and Manistee National Forest with his friend Jordan Dischinger-Smedes, an AP Environmental Science (APES) teacher at Grand River Preparatory High School. Dischinger-Smedes shares Padron’s passion for the environment and makes highly used videos for his APES class.
As the Senior People Services Business Partner NHA, Padron is the point of contact between People Services and our school leaders. Aside from hiring, all employment-related items are routed to his team.
“I stay at NHA because of the impact of my work,” said Padron. “I’ve also been fortunate enough to build great connections with some amazing leaders. They make the job very easy.”
National Heritage Academies is a network of over 90 tuition-free, public charter schools across nine states, serving more than 60,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade. For more information, visit
Keep up the excellent work, David!