WVCA reports record symposium crowd

OFFICIALS of the West Virginia Coal Association are estimating an unprecedented crowd of 700 to 800 industry individuals attended its 34th annual symposium, held last week in Charleston, West Virginia.
WVCA reports record symposium crowd WVCA reports record symposium crowd WVCA reports record symposium crowd WVCA reports record symposium crowd WVCA reports record symposium crowd

MSHA assistant secretary Richard Stickler, WVCA senior vice president Chris Hamilton, WV governor Manchin and WVCA president Bill Raney.

Donna Schmidt

“I can tell you that everyone at the association did a great job of putting all the moving parts into an orchestrated three days,” the group’s president, Bill Raney, told International Longwall News of the staff’s efforts. “They made it easy for me and I am most appreciative.”

Raney said the topics chosen for this year, which included discussions of legislative topics, environmental issues, miner health and safety, and research updates, were directly in line with the landscape of today’s industry and “where we are headed”. All of the initial feedback of the event, he said, has reflected an enlightening experience by attendees.

“All the comments have been most positive regarding a full program of pertinent topics. Of course, the continuous exchange of ideas at the exhibits and in the hospitality suites is always popular with everyone,” he said.

“It’s always good to have so many of our people under one roof showing such camaraderie and interest in taking an industry forward.”

While the dates for the 2008 symposium have not been set, the WVCA is compiling attendees’ comments and analysing them against the industry’s movement throughout this year to determine the direction it will take.

“There will likely be some of the same subjects, but there will surely be new topics and subjects that crop up,” Raney said, noting that the association’s primary goal for the conference is to discuss the most timely, up-to-the-minute topics.

For further information on the West Virginia Coal Association and Friends of Coal, check out American Longwall Magazine’s coverage of the groups at http://www.longwalls.com/storyview.asp?storyid=61535.