WV COAL HALL OF FAME
By: Bill Bissett
Charles Ryan Associates
Three more leaders from West Virginia's coal industry were inducted into
the West Virginia Coal Hall of Fame recently. The WV Coal Hall of Fame,
established in 1998, selects recipients for this honor due to their important contribution to West
Virginia's largest economic provider.
The first to be inducted was Josef Ehrengruber, President, Consulting & Coal Services, in Beckley, West Virginia. After graduating from high school, Ehrengruber studied economics at the University of Innsbruck, Austria where he received a Masters in Economics in 1970.
On September 30, 1977, he moved to West Virginia and became President of Virginia Crews that operated as a joint venture, with A. T. Massey as a 20% partner. Under his stewardship, Virginia Crews grew from a small 250,000 ton per year producer to a well-recognized producer of premium quality coking coals, with overall production reaching 2.2 million tons per year.
After his retirement, Ehrengruber continues to work and is providing services to the AMCI and Alpha Natural Resources groups on a consulting basis.
William M. Poundstone, who retired as Executive Vice President and Director of Consolidation
William M. Poundstone
Company, was also inducted. He graduated from West Virginia University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Engineering of Mines in 1949. He also completed the Management Program for Executives at the University of Pittsburgh in 1960.
Pounstone's illustrious career spanned over 35 years of professional engineering, managerial and executive experience in the coal mining and related mining industries. His knowledge of the industry is evidenced by many contributions to the mining industry, particularly in the field of continuous mining machines, coal transportation devices, and de-gasification of coal seams.
In addition to being the holder of 34 U.S. Patents, Poundstone has authored a number of technical publications and was co-author of a U.S. Bureau of Mines publication entitled "Removing Methane from the Pittsburgh Coalbed in Northern West Virginia."
Stephen G. Young, Chief Government Affairs Officer, Consol Energy, Inc.,
Stephen G. "Steve" Young
was inducted. A native of Buckhannon, West Virginia, Young graduated as Salutatorian from Buckhannon-Upshur High School and went to Duke University on a NROTC scholarship, graduating in 1958 as Class President. Following three years active duty in the Navy, he graduated from the West Virginia University College of Law in 1964.
Young moved to Pittsburgh joining Consolidation Coal Company as Director of State Government Relations in July 1974, following six and one half years running the West Virginia Coal Association. He was elected Vice President, Government Affairs the following year. Subsequently he served on the Boards of Directors of the Illinois Coal Association*, Indiana Coal Council, Kentucky Coal Association, Montana Coal Council, National Coal Association, Ohio Coal Association*, Pennsylvania Coal Association*, Virginia Coal Association*, and West Virginia Coal Association*, the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce, West Virginia High Tech Consortium Foundation*, and West Virginia Research League*, chairing seven of these groups. (*Past Chairman).
The West Virginia Coal Hall of Fame is located at the College of Engineering & Mineral Resources at West Virginia University. Since its creation eight years ago, the Hall of Fame has inducted 28 other individuals who have contributed greatly to our state's number one industry - coal. cl
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