A Brief History of Appalachian Voices
Appalachian Voices formed in 1997 as an outgrowth of The Appalachian Voice publication, established the year before in Boone, N.C., to cover environmental issues in the region. Starting with three dedicated individuals in a tiny King Street office, today the organization includes a staff of 30 serving five states.
The organization quickly evolved from addressing clearcutting and coal-fired power plant air emissions on a local level to influencing policy on the national stage. For more than 20 years we have fought to end the destructive practice of mountaintop removal coal mining, work that has taken us from kitchen table conversations in Appalachia to rotary clubs in New Mexico to the halls of Congress in Washington DC.
Our campaigns to address coal’s impacts, clean up toxic coal ash and stop unnecessary fracked-gas pipelines have given voice to those most impacted by these threats, and made a tangible impact in Appalachia through victories shared with our partners, neighbors, and friends.
In addition to our continued work on these threats, we expanded to address solutions to the energy crisis, including new economic opportunities for coal communities, cleaning up abandoned coal mines, and making access to affordable and renewable electricity a priority.
We also expanded our work to ensure our region advances clean energy solutions that respond to the urgency of the climate crisis and address the injustices of our centuries long reliance on fossil fuels. At the center of this work is our commitment to build new economic opportunities for coal communities, clean up abandoned coal mines, and make access to affordable and renewable electricity a priority.
Whether we are standing up to big energy companies or working to get solar on a local community center, our purpose remains the same — to amplify the voices of the communities we serve and promote social and environmental justice for everyone impacted by the dirty energy cycle.
None of this would have been possible without the support of our donors, advocates, volunteers and staff. Your dedication and commitment rooted in the spirit of our founding has helped us grow strong while remaining nimble to tackle pressing issues as they emerge. We look forward to what we can accomplish with you in the next 25 years.