Issue 6: December 2013/January 2014

vision

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Innovating with Electric Cooperatives

By Sarah Kellogg An inspiring, forward-thinking businessman, Mike Couick works to distribute affordable electricity to rural homes. “I don’t believe it’s a sustainable business plan to try to sell electricity that a member can’t afford,” Couick says. “The bottom line is their satisfaction and well-being.” Couick is the CEO of the Electric Cooperatives of South […]


Ralph Davis: Exploring Appalachia’s Future

By Nolen Nychay In his 21 years of journalistic work at publications such as the Jackson County Sun, Paintsville Herald and Floyd County Times, Ralph Davis developed a close relationship with the small communities of eastern Kentucky and the rural lifestyle the region prides itself on. When Davis began work on his master’s thesis in […]


Paige Cordial: Minding Mental Health

By Rachel Ellen Simon Post-traumatic stress disorder is most commonly associated with soldiers who have seen combat, but psychologist Paige Cordial has found similar symptoms in the coalfields of Appalachia. Cordial recently received her doctorate in counseling psychology at Virginia’s Radford University, where she wrote her dissertation on the relationship between physical proximity to mountaintop […]


Dewayne Barton: Building Opportunity in West Asheville

By Kimber Ray Dewayne Barton isn’t only referring to nature when he talks about changing the way people relate to their environment. “Just like we polluted a stream or a river, we also polluted communities, and [restoring communities] has to be a part of the solution or it’s not right,” he says. As an artist […]


Matt Hepler: Charting a Path to Clean Water

By Molly Moore After studying geologic features and data, Matt Hepler maps out a handful of locations in the coal-bearing mountains of southwest Virginia. With a cooler full of empty water bottles, a scientific probe and a pair of waders — just in case — he heads out to monitor water quality in areas impacted […]


Patricia Beaver: Pioneer Appalachian Scholar Retires

By Rachel Ellen Simon Patricia Beaver may not be a household name in all circles, but mention her name in a group of Appalachian scholars, and everyone will have a story to share. Beaver has been a leading scholar in the field of Appalachian Studies for over four decades. With a doctorate in anthropology from […]


Only God Should Move Mountains

By Nolen Nychay For Reverend Ryan Bennett, creation care is about encouraging environmental responsibility through the Biblical principles of stewardship. At Bethlehem United Methodist Church in Franklin, Tenn., Bennett uses the philosophy “love the Creator, love His creations” to discuss the looming threat of mountaintop removal, spurring a rising interest — especially amongst younger age […]


On the Right Side of the Law:

Wes Addington Defends Miners’ Rights By Molly Moore From the gallery of the Kentucky State Capitol, lawyer Wes Addington and a group of women from eastern Kentucky — mostly widows of coal miners — watched the Kentucky House pass a bill expanding legal and safety protections for state miners. The women had advocated tirelessly in […]

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