West Virginia Executive Spring 2017 - Page 57

Austin Caperton’s long-time career as a coal executive and his family’s history in politics seem to have groomed him for a position in public service. A successful, self-made entrepreneur and the cousin of a former West Virginia governor, Caperton was appointed cabinet secretary of the West Virginia Department of Environ- mental Protection (DEP) by Governor Jim Justice in January 2017. With a proven record of working with companies and creating jobs in the energy industry, he brings a unique perspective to the role that he hopes will allow him to balance protecting West Virginia’s land, air and water with eliminating inefficient red tape that prevents growth and prosperity. Caperton took time to discuss with us his background in energy and provide insight into the role the DEP plays in the Mountain State. Here, he discusses the strengths and weaknesses of West Vir- ginia’s leading industries, the major chal- lenges he faces as DEP cabinet secretary and how he hopes to use his private sector experience to inspire efficiency in West Virginia’s state government. WVE: Tell us about your experience in the coal industry and how it will help you in your new role as DEP secretary. AC: I was an executive in the coal in- dustry, so I understand surface mining and deep mining and the permitting of those activities. I’m also an attorney, so I can read a law or a statute, and I’ve been an entrepreneur, founding my own busi- ness in 1989. I’ve had a world of experi- ence in mining, mining transactions and equipment manufacturing related to the mining industry. What I learned early on in this position with the DEP is there is so much about the work of this agency that is technical. No one person could ever learn it ͼԁѕȁٔ)ɕ䁽ѡѼ)͕́ѼЁ͕)]Y]ЁԁѼ)͠ѡ́ɽٕȁѡ)Ёȁ啅) %ӊéѱɱ䁥ѕɔѼ)ͅ䁕ᅍѱݡЁ$Ѽ͠$)ѡѡݔ݅ЁѼͼ)ѕɔ́ѡЁݗeɔ́Ё)ݔͥ䁉%ɝѥ(ā啕̰ѡɗé݅́ɽ)ɽ̸ٕ)$她ѼЁѼѡѽ)ݡɔݔЁ䁥ɽٔ)͔́ѡ@́ѡѕ݅Ѽ)ٕЁ]ЁYɝ)YՅ䁹ѡͥ)ѡхєݥѡЁɵЁͽ)ͽаЁȰ݅ѕȰȁϊP)ɔɵхѥ٥ѥ̸]݅ЁѼ)ɔݡͽ䁡́م)ɕͽѼٔɵЁѡЁݔЁЁѼ)ѡ́ѱ䁅́ݔѡЁ)ɵ́Ѽѡ́ѡхє])Yɝ́ݕ́ѡɅ́ݔ)ЁɔѼ)]YMɔݥѠ́ȁȴ)ѥٔѡɕЁхєѡ)ɝ䁅ɥ)]ЁYɝ) ]eٔȁՍɅ͡)ѡTL䰁ѡЁ͡Ё)хɱ䁑Ʌѥ)ѥɽՍѥɱͥ)Ёɕ͔Ʌ́ɽՌ)ѥ$ѡԁЁѡхѥѥ̰)׊eѡЁ͕Ѽɽչ)ɍЁѡɥɅѥѡ)չ䁅́݅́Ѐԁɍа)ѡЁ́ɕٕ͕9܁̰́ٔ)ȁхѡЀԁɍЁɅ)́ѡԁɍЁɅ )ѡЁݥѠѡЁѡЁMѡɸ])YɝɽՍѥ́)͔ͥѡɕ͕ٕ́ٔ)٥䁵ݔٔՍɅ)͡ЁȁѡЁ́х)́ȁхє́ѱɑȁ)ѡѡȁ́ȁхє)́ȁѡɥ̰Ё́ɕ)٥́ѡЁѡɅ́ɽՍѥ)ݔ͕ٔѼѕɕԴ)ٕєɽ٥ɽѠ)ȁȁɕЁ́)܁́ѡЁѼ)ȁхє)]Y]Ёɔѡ)́ԁ͕܁)ԁѼɕ́ѡ) $ѡȁЁ)ѼɥЁ܁ѼЁݥѠ)ݡЁ́ݸɽ]͡ѽ])ٔɅ܁Ʌѥ)ݡ܁݅䁽ѡQЁ)ѡӊéݡЁ́ͅ]ЁYɝ)ѡ䁽ɕЁɅ)䰁ѥձɱ䁥ȁ丁)ѡݔ́ɽ)ѡɅٕɹЁ͕́)ɽ́Ё]ЁYɝͼ$)ѡѡȁ́Ѽ)͕ͥݡЁ́ѡЁɕɐ)她ѼɔЁ܁Ѽѡ͔)չ́ɽѥ́ѥ́)]Y]Ёչѥ́ٔ)ԁѥ܁ݥ)хمхѡ) QѕѥȁȁɅ)Ѽɕե́́)ѡхє́՝$ѡݔɔх)مхѡиQɔ́՝չ)ɽՍѥݔɔѕѥѼ)ե́ѡЁݥ܁́Ѽ)ѡЁɽՍѥЁѡхє)Ё܁ѼݡɔЁͽQхє)́ѡɕٕՔͼݔ݅ЁѼ)ɔݔЁѡЁ́Ёȁхє)Ёɔхѱ䰁ݔ݅ЁѼ)ɔѡЁѡЁ́ѥ镐)хєݹɕѥ٥ѥ́ѡЁݔ)хمхи)]Yeԁٔ)Ёѡх)ݕɽѕѥѡ)٥ɽЁѥѡ)́]ЁYɝ̸͕ͥ)!܁ԁѼٔѡ) QЁٕ́ͥQ́)ɕձѥ́ѡхє]ЁYɝ)ѡTLɕ锁ѡЁ䁅)ѡ٥ɽЁи5䁩́$)͕а́Ѽɔݗeɔ她ѡ͔)́ͥѕѱ䁅́ѡeɔɥѕ)ѡ͔́ѡ́ѡ͕ٕ)ݸɽѡ1ͱɔ)ѡӊéѡݥѡ)]Yٕѡєٕ)Ʌѥٕ́٥ɽхʹ)ݡЁݽձԁѼ)ѕȁչхЁѡCe)͔ͥ) ]eɔᕍѥٔɅ])$ѕѡ́ͥѥ$Ѽɕ)䁍٥́ͽ̸Q1ͱɔ͕)ѡ̰ѡᕍѥٔɅ)́ɥ́Ёѡ̸$)ѕͭЁͥѥ٤)ɽхʹѡ٥ɽи$)ٔͥѥ́ѡ͔ѡ̰Ё$e)ЁѼ܁ͽ)ݡЁ͡ձȁ͡ձeЁѼѕ)Ѽѡᕍѥ䁩QᕍԴ)ѥ䁩́ͽ䁍́)݅́Ѽͽѡѡ䁡ٔѼ)ՉЁɵи%ѡЁɵЁ́ѡ)]]\]Ya UQ%Y =4$)L@H$8Ȁ(