CHARLESTON, WV, (WVNS) — Bill Raney, who has served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of the WV Coal Association since 1992, retired effective Jan. 1, 2021.
“Bill Raney is an icon to those of us that have worked in and around the mining industry and to many throughout the state of West Virginia,” said Heath Lovell, chairman of the West Virginia Coal Association board of directors. “His passion for, and contributions to, this industry over his professional career are unsurpassed. He is the original “Friend of Coal” and we wish him a long, fruitful and well-deserved retirement.”
Raney began as a service mine inspector in the WVDNR’s Division of Reclamation before being promoted to Assistant Chief. He joined the WV Mining & Reclamation Association as Vice President until being named President of the WV Coal Association in 1992.
Raney served in the West Virginia Army National Guard throughout his professional career. He held several command positions, including Commander of the 1092nd Combat Engineer Battalion and Commander of the 111th Engineer Group. Before retiring from military service, he served as a special assistant to the Adjutant General at the rank of Colonel. He has served as President of the West Virginia National Guard Association and continues to serve as Chairman of the West Virginia National Guard Foundation.
Bill Raney received multiple honors and awards throughout his career, including: the Distinguished West Virginian award, Most Loyal Alumni by the WVU Alumni Association, Who’s Who in West Virginia, the Hope Award by the National Multiple Sclerosis Association, and the Lewis McManus Service Award by the West Virginia Youth in Government Program. He has been inducted into the West Virginia Coal Hall of Fame and the First Tee Hall of Fame. And, he and Pam were the founders of the Don Nehlen Fan Club supporting the Coach during his career at West Virginia University.
“While Bill leaves an amazing legacy and we are sad to see him go, the West Virginia Coal Association is being left in good hands and will continue on as the leading voice and advocate for the mining industry in West Virginia and our region,” said Lovell.
The WV Coal Association announced that Chris R. Hamilton, current Senior Vice President of the West Virginia Coal Association, was named President and Chief Executive Officer. He began his new position on January 1, 2021.