Executive Leadership Team
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
Bob Preston is an experienced business leader, having helmed multibillion-dollar regional and global businesses for U.S. multinationals, and served as a private-equity CEO twice before joining Synagro. He began his career at DuPont, and rapidly moved into senior operating positions at Allied-Signal, Johnson Electric and Honeywell before becoming Eastman Chemical Company’s Asia president. Bob then moved to J.B. Poindexter, Inc., where he tripled operating income in his two years as chief operating officer. He was recruited as CEO of Davis-Standard, LLC for ONCAP where he spearheaded the company’s expansion into Asia and development of Davis’ DSX extrusion coating technology. From 2014 to 2018, Bob led GSE Environmental to a successful exit from ownership by Littlejohn & Co. after growing EBITDA 240% in just three years.
Bob has a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from Northeastern University and a master’s degree in Engineering from Rutgers University. He is a Six Sigma Black Belt.
CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER
Mike Pisch is a highly experienced CFO, with a track record of leading private-equity-owned companies to successful exits. He began his career at Deloitte and Touche, where he was a senior auditor. He was part of the team that sold Western Sky, a $150M aerospace products manufacturer, to McKechnie. Mike later spent a decade at General Electric, in a series of finance leadership roles at both GE Infrastructure and GE Capital. Mike’s first CFO role was at Varel International, a $300M oil and gas drill bit company, owned by KRG and sold to Arcapita. He then moved to CFO roles at Micross Components, where he led a successful exit, Davis-Standard, Vexos and Chroma Color, before joining Synagro.
Mike holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from LaSalle University and an Executive MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He is a Certified Public Accountant.
CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
Mick Fegan has served in operations leadership and general management roles of increasing responsibility in private-equity-owned firms for the last 20 years. Prior to Synagro, he was the vice president of Global Operations at GSE Environmental, where he was responsible for seven facilities on three continents, and was a member of the team taking the business to successful exit from ownership by Littlejohn & Co. Prior to GSE, he was responsible for leading more than 1,100 engineering, finance, logistics, procurement, production and quality colleagues as the vice president of European Operations for WireCo World Group. Mick has also served as general manager for Davis-Standard, LLC’s $150M cast-and-coating-converting equipment business and as a global business line manager at Crane Energy Flow Solutions.
Mick has a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from Queens University of Belfast and master’s degrees in Computing and Information Systems and Business Administration from University of Ulster. He is Six Sigma Black Belt and Lean Master certified.
CHIEF COMMERCIAL OFFICER
Matt Robertson is responsible for Synagro’s business development, rail and services sales, product marketing, communications and strategy functions. He joined Synagro from Axalta, a successful carve out and subsequent IPO of four DuPont coatings businesses by the Carlyle Group. While at Axalta and DuPont, he was the general manager of a $400M automotive aftermarket business, global marketing director for a $1.8B coatings SBU and sales lead for a set of businesses with $1.4B in annual turnover. He was a founding member of Deloitte’s pricing and enterprise marketing transformation practices. Matt started his career by serving a decade as a U.S. Air Force officer, pilot and military member of the George W. Bush and Clinton White House traveling staffs.
Matt holds a bachelor’s degree in Math and Economics from the University of Virginia and a master’s degree in Business Administration from Duke University.
Senior vice president of Engineering and Chief Technology Officer
John Goodwin leads the development of partnerships with technology suppliers, design engineers and general contractors to facilitate the design, construction and optimization of our facilities portfolio. With 30 years of biosolids project delivery, operations and environmental permitting experience, John is one of the industry’s leading technology authorities in delivering sustainable biosolids solutions. He began his career with the Bio Gro Division of Wheelabrator Technologies as an environmental engineer, moving quickly into a plant manager role. Over the next 20+ years with Synagro, John put his stamp on our entire facilities footprint, helping to design, commission, operate and optimize dozens of facilities. During that time, he served in leadership roles as general manager of multiple regions and of Synagro’s engineering and facilities development group. Most recently he has led the technical development, design and construction of Synagro’s newest facilities at Hamilton, Ontario and Victoria, British Columbia in Canada, and Fort Worth, Texas.
John has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering Technology from Norwich University.
General counsel, Secretary and Chief Compliance Officer
Al Slepian is Synagro’s general counsel, Secretary and Chief Compliance Officer. In this role, he is responsible for the group providing Synagro’s legal and advisory services, including mergers and acquisitions, contract support, litigation, and Federal and State compliance monitoring and reporting. He has specific subject matter expertise in municipal contracting and deal negotiation, in addition to M&A, having supported Synagro’s Nursery Products, Old Line Environmental and Pace Dewatering Systems due diligence and acquisitions. Al has been with Synagro since 2014, when he joined as Senior Counsel, Commercial Transactions. He moved into the General Counsel role in 2015. Al started his in-house career as Assistant General Counsel at PG&E National Energy Group, before moving to a role as Senior Vice President and General Counsel for Argos Utilities Corporation. In both of these roles, Al developed deep subject matter expertise in the power generation industry and legal support for large-scale construction projects. Al later served as Associate General Counsel at USEC, Inc. (now Centrus Energy) before joining Synagro.
Al holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and History from Duke University and a juris doctorate degree from Columbia University. He is admitted to the bar in New York.
Chief Information Officer
Norman Whitelaw has more than 30 years of recognized Information Technology leadership experience with specific subject matter expertise in enterprise security, systems architecture, and cloud solutions. Norman came to Synagro from Solmax/ GSE Environmental where he was the Chief Information Officer. Norman led several key IT initiatives during his eight-year tenure, contributing to a successful sale of the company. Prior to that, he held a variety of IT leadership positions for large multinational, multi-billion dollar corporations such as LyondellBasell, KBR and Halliburton. He played a key IT role in the merger of Lyondell and Basell, spin-off of KBR from Halliburton, and eventual IPO of KBR. Norman designed and deployed the IT support infrastructure supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom for a large government contractor and has participated in numerous Microsoft case studies where he was recognized as a pioneer in the IT industry. He is also a Certified Information Systems Security Professional.