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.

 

  • Happy Valentine's Day! We're feeling the love and wanted to share a few of the things we love about Coalfield. 💓 Do… https://t.co/ADMVCLbPnz
  • Wondering who the friendly faces are behind the scenes? Get to know our team members here: https://t.co/gf3FxEDTiS
  • Make a difference in the lives of real Appalachians. When you choose to donate to Coalfield Development, you can tr… https://t.co/QFavbl8Vwm
  • You can't grow if you don't learn. Learn more about the personal and academic development opportunities we offer he… https://t.co/vauVChfMHw
  • Refresh Appalachia partners with Turnrow Appalachian Farm Collective, which means you can shop their products onlin… https://t.co/hsDbnxXGlD
  • WE'RE HIRING: Coalfield Development is looking for two new team members - check out the job descriptions on our web… https://t.co/JR9BWxA2Lt
  • Valentine's Day is coming up, and lucky for you, SustainU t-shirts make a great gift for that special someone! Shop… https://t.co/V3oB7Lr9MX
  • Show your love for your state this Valentine's Day with a handmade state wall hanging from Saw's Edge! These can be… https://t.co/tmXlDzebZk
  • Originally known as "Old Town Antiques," Village Renew-All Antique Mall by Coalfield Development continues the time… https://t.co/AADp9gC87V
  • RT @ARCgov: The challenges facing coal communities can feel overwhelming. That's why @CoalfieldWV helps crew members develop professionally…
  • You can now buy custom made products produced by our Crew Members here in Appalachia at Saws Edge Woodshop. Oh yeah… https://t.co/tg2sStOkn4
  • Establishing partnerships is key to building a future in Appalachia that we all can depend on. Learn more about our… https://t.co/6xOCn82oAq
  • Check out this piece from Market to Market about our work. We're excited to share what we do here at Coalfield with… https://t.co/cvjHJY1G3O
  • Are you sensing a theme yet? This month’s theme for #CoalfieldCouncilDay is physical health - and our own Elice Hun… https://t.co/JwhBmDgSPy
  • Our COO Ryan Stoner is leading a workshop on back safety, teaching us that lifting and carrying doesn’t have to be… https://t.co/W3f46bB7Rc
  • "As a licensed general contractor, Coalfield Development can advance bold, creative projects in deep collaboration… https://t.co/qE1PRLrBHF