Benson hangs up his boots

NORTH American Coal Corporation CEO Robert Benson, 67, will retire on June 30 after 38 years with the company.

Lou Caruana

North American Coal has grown under Benson’s leadership through the addition of seven new mining and services operations.

During his tenure, Benson has held various management positions. He assumed the position of executive vice president in September 2005, and has been president and CEO since March 2006.

Prior to that time he was also president of North American Coal's largest subsidiary, The Coteau Properties Company, and general manager of the Mississippi Lignite Mining Company’s Red Hills Mine.

Benson will serve as vice-chairman of the board of directors of North American Coal following his retirement until December 2015.

Upon Benson's retirement, J C Butler Jr, 54, currently senior vice president – project development, administration and Mississippi operations will become president and CEO of North American Coal.

Butler will also continue to serve in his capacity as the senior vice president – finance, treasurer and chief administrative officer of NACCO Industries. Butler has extensive leadership experience and knowledge of both North American Coal and NACCO.

He joined NACCO in 1995 and has been an officer since May of 1997. Butler has been senior vice president – project development and administration of North American Coal since January of 2010, and in June of 2014 his role was expanded to include oversight responsibilities for North American Coal's two mining operations in Mississippi.

Butler has a BSc and an MSc in agricultural economics from Purdue University, and an MBA from Harvard Business School.