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Alumni and Friends

Resources for Alumni and Friends

We are extremely proud of our many alumni worldwide. Please share your opinions and thoughts with us and help us stay connected by keeping your contact information current. We encourage you to visit often to keep up with the latest department news and events!

About William N. Poundstone

Founder of the William N. Poundstone Lecture Series and Distinguished Engineer of Mines Award

  • 1949: Received BSEM, West Virginia University
  • 1949: Began career at CONSOL as a timberman
  • 1965: Named executive vice president at CONSOL
  • Holder of 34 U.S. patents
  • Served on the Visiting Committee of the College of Mineral and Energy Resources at WVU
  • Member, National Academy of Engineering
  • West Virginia Coal Hall of Fame


To recognize the achievements of individuals who had an exceptional career in mining and related industries, and to present this unique experience to the mining engineering faculty and students in West Virginia University.

Selection Criteria

The nominee can be either alumnus or non-alumnus who has exceptional achievements and unique experiences in the mining and related industries.

The selected candidate is required to present a seminar to the mining engineering faculty and students at West Virginia University in conjunction with the award ceremony. Each year two candidates will be selected, one in the fall semester and the other in the spring semester.

Click here for a listing and transcripts of past lectures


The Department of Mining Engineering is grateful to its alumni and friends for their support of scholarships that are available to students currently enrolled in the Department. Apply for scholarships.


Distinguished Engineer of Mines Awards

Advisory Committee

The Advisory Committee is composed of representatives of those who hire our BS, MS and PhD graduates. The Committee fulfills an important role in the Department by providing feedback which ensures that students graduating at all levels have the skills that they need to be marketable. During their bi-annual meeting, the Committee members hear from the chair, faculty, undergraduate students, graduate students and college administrators. The Committee reports its findings to the chair, the dean and the provost.

  • Keith Hainer, Spearfish Engineering
  • Jeff Kelley, United Coal Company
  • James L. Laurita, Laurita Energy, LLC
  • Carrie Lilly, Red Bone Mining
  • John N. Murphy, University of Pittsburgh
  • James R. Turner, Murray Energy Corporation
  • Bill Raney, WV Coal Association
  • Michael T. Shook 
  • Ryan Toler, Contura Energy
  • Jeff Wilson, Wilson Energy Advisors, LLC