Model & Strategy

Coalfield Development is a West Virginia 501(c)3 focused on ending the intergenerational cycle of poverty in Appalachia by rebuilding the region’s economy from the ground up.  Coalfield’s mission is to promote economic development and create jobs for chronically unemployed residents, most of whom are in the coal industry. Coal companies owned, and then abandoned, not just the coal mines, but much of the state’s infrastructure.  Coalfield oversees a family of social enterprises that pioneer new and viable economic markets in the region, while simultaneously providing a holistic model of direct employment, formal education, and personal development training.

Coalfield Development logo
At a Glance
Founded: 2012
Founder & CEO: Brandon Dennison
Economic Empowerment
Location of work: Domestic
Coalfield Development
P.O. Box 1133
Wayne, WV 25570
Appalachian Courage, Creativity, Community
Two men in hard hats are featured; one is working to cut wood to install siding on the side of a house, while the other is using a laptop to look up parameters for the siding
Meet Brandon Dennison

Brandon Dennison, the Founder and CEO of Coalfield Development, was born and raised in southern West Virginia. In college, Brandon became a Youth Director for a progressive faith group through and experiential learning trips across the US and the world.  On his final service trip in West Virginia, Brandon was struck by an interaction with two men who approached the volunteers who were working on home repairs asking the volunteers for work.  Through these experiences, Brandon recognized how much need there is in his own backyard, and after graduate school, he returned to West Virginia to launch Coalfield Development.

Brandon attended college at Shepherd University in West Virginia and received a Master of Public Affairs in Nonprofit Management with a Certificate in Social Entrepreneurship from Indiana University. He has received many awards and honors including the 2015 JM Kaplan Social Innovation Prize, the 2014 Diehl Family Social Enterprise Competition, and was named a 40 under 40 leaders nationwide who are making their mark on the nonprofit world by the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

 

 

Impact

$15 million in new investment attracted to southern West Virginia with over 160 new jobs created and more than 40 new businesses started in southern West Virginia.

Over 800 professional certifications facilitated for formerly unemployed people, and messaging about new sustainable economy reaching over 15 million people on a global scale.

 

  • Our latest blog post covering the 3rd Central Appalachian Social Enterprise Summit is out now! Check it out here:… https://t.co/notkd0eRuP
  • We define "planning" as the process of conceptualizing and organizing the steps and actions necessary to achieve a… https://t.co/E4iwF7ZNrb
  • RT @lowlinenyc: Last #RuinandRedemption book-related event of 2020 is on Monday- come if you're in NYC! Hosted by JM Kaplan Fund and with s…
  • Check out Turnrow & Refresh Appalachia slinging that lettuce at the A.D. Lewis Center in Huntington for the Thanksg… https://t.co/a7if03Y6ND
  • Our personal theme for the month is "Lifelong Learning". Robert C Byrd posthumously holds the title of longest-serv… https://t.co/itD4u4ZQBP
  • We're thankful for the hard work of our crew members and their hard work with developing social enterprises. What a… https://t.co/hX1MhfXPyP
  • RT @TheJMKaplanFund: Join us on Dec 2nd for a panel discussion that reimagines abandoned spaces ft. Dan Barasch (@lowlinenyc), Ken Lustbade…
  • Don't forget to check out our Take Me Home Box, by our Social Enterprises SustainU and Saw's Edge Woodshop! ♥️💙 Get… https://t.co/t5K2UJHXBr
  • RT @AlenaKlimas: Today, there were really inspiring and innovative projects at the #SocialEnterprise Summit at Tamarack. Exciting stuff for…
  • RT @HiveWV: Happy #NationalEntrepreneursDay to all you dreamers, builders, and makers from WV Hive!
  • ROUND 2: More great Social Enterprise Presentations from: Fun Fitness Kids Club, Rhythm United/Dream Big Music, Cam… https://t.co/eECMzD4zQn
  • Jeremy Turner from @YourEPICMission did an amazing introduction for our Social Enterprises' presentations and gave… https://t.co/sg9KYBuD30
  • Great presentations by our Social Enterprises- Adam Hudson with @RefreshAppalach , Eddie Austin with Saws Edge Wood… https://t.co/T75FGUXEsA
  • RT @UFI_Inc: Opening remarks by CEO of @CoalfieldWV for Social Enterprise Summit today! We’re looking forward to a great day. https://t.co/…
  • "To start a business means to bring your full authentic self to the table." -Jennifer Wells, WV Healthy Kids & Fami… https://t.co/aILTv1n7bd
  • "Social Enterprise isn't just a simple definition- it is a spectrum." -Brandon on the welcoming and opening of this… https://t.co/7CFUBUoqb3
  • RT @YourEPICMission: Tuesday, Nov 19th Jeremy will be speaking about himself, EPIC & his vision for the future of Appalachia. He'll be shar…
  • Good morning, Beckley, WV! Today is the 3rd Annual Central Appalachian Social Enterprise Summit. Tune in to our Twi… https://t.co/Jfvs3lSWMV
  • A few of us are in Green River, Utah this week with Enterprise Community Partners! Enjoy this beautiful scenery. W… https://t.co/HA91V4VEPM
  • Don't forget to check out our Take Me Home Box, by our Social Enterprises SustainU and Saw's Edge Woodshop! ♥️💙 Get… https://t.co/K0UErXdV88