Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR) said April 11 that Paul Vining, one of the most prominent and respected coal marketers in the business, has been named as company president, adding to his current role as chief commercial officer of the company.
Vining will continue to have responsibility for sales and marketing, adding responsibility for Alpha’s mining operations. He will assume all the duties of current Alpha President Kurt Kost. Vining will continue reporting to Alpha CEO Kevin Crutchfield.
Kost is leaving Alpha, which is based in Bristol, Va., following 31 years of service. He plans to retire in the Bristol area and will remain with Alpha until the end of May, serving in an advisory capacity to Vining and Crutchfield.
“Paul brings vast leadership experience in the global coal industry to this newly expanded role, and I firmly believe that combining our mining operations with our sales and marketing efforts at this time will create the most effective business model for Alpha and provide new opportunities for growth and synergy,” Crutchfield said. “Paul has spent his career building successful organizations across the globe in the coal industry, and his experience in this area will help propel Alpha’s continued growth in the years ahead.”
“Kurt has been a tremendous leader for Alpha and his work integrating Foundation Coal and Massey Energy into Alpha operations has been a critical factor in Alpha’s success,” said Crutchfield. “I appreciate all of his contributions to our Running Right culture and his unrelenting focus on safety and continuous improvement in our operations.”
Vining has held past sales positions with A.T. Massey Coal and two major international oil company coal subsidiaries at the time, Occidental Petroleum and ENI/Italy. Vining joined Peabody Energy (BYSE: BTU) in 1995. Vining accepted the CEO role with Magnum Coal/Trout Coal in 2006, building a Central Appalachia coal company to 18 million tons of annual production in three years. The company was sold to Patriot Coal (NYSE: PCX) in 2008 with Vining remaining as Patriot’s president and chief operating officer. Vining joined Alpha in 2011 as executive vice-president and chief commercial officer. He has also served brief stints in recent years at Arch Coal (NYSE: ACI) and Illinois startup coal producer White Oak Resources.
With $7.1bn in total revenue in 2011, Alpha Natural Resources ranks as America’s second-largest coal producer by revenue and third-largest by production.