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Alabama Mining Association Announces Safety & Sustainability Award Winners

November 23, 2021 -  The Alabama Mining Association (AMA) today announced the winners of the inaugural AMA Safety & Sustainability Awards.

Award winners were announced on November 16 at the association’s first annual Safety & Sustainability Awards Dinner at The Club in Birmingham.

The winners were announced by members of the same panel of high-profile, independent judges that graded the award applications:

Samuel Pierce
Mine Safety and Health Administration (Retired)
Eastern District Manager

Fitzgerald Washington
Labor Secretary
Alabama Dept. of Labor

Kathy H. Love
Alabama Surface Mining Commission

Lance LeFleur
Alabama Department of Environmental Management

Chris Blankenship
Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources

Tim Gothard
Alabama Wildlife Federation
Executive Director

The stunning, one-of-a-kind awards were hand carved from Alabama-mined marble by famed sculptor Craigger Browne, a native of the Yellowhammer State.

AMA’s goal with the awards is to highlight examples of successful safety and sustainability initiatives in the mining industry and to publicly recognize the companies and individuals that made them possible.

Award winners were as follows:

Champion of Safety Award
James Christian, 43 years without a lost time accident
James Lay, 43 years without a lost time accident
Billy Millwood, 42 years without a lost time accident
Randy Sellers, 29 years without a lost time accident
Richard Dodd, 28 years without a lost time accident
Billy Dorrough, 28 years without a lost time accident
Randall Jenkins, 25 years without a lost time accident

Exceptional Reclamation Award
Drummond Company
Development of Wetlands and Endangered Turtle Habitat on Pre-law Mined Land

Exceptional Safety & Training Initiative Award
Bevill State Community College
Longwall Mining Training Center

Land Stewardship Award
Warrior Met Coal
Mine #4 Wetland Conversion Project

Lifetime Commitment to Stewardship Award
Dwight Hicks, (Retired) Director of Reclamation & Environmental Compliance at Drummond Company

Lifetime Dedication to Safety & Training Award
Jeffery Minor, Safety & Compliance Engineer at Nelson Brothers

Mitigation Excellence Award
Southland Resources
Mud Creek Mitigation Bank for Swann’s Crossing Mine

Outstanding Safety & Training Leadership Award
Edward Boylen, Vice President of Safety at Warrior Met Coal

Water Quality Stewardship Award
Excellent Compliance with Alabama's Water Quality Standards

Wildlife Conservation Award
Drummond Company
Wild Quail Restoration Project in Walker County

President's Community Safety Award
Argos Roberta Cement Plant
Argos Emergency Response Training Partnership with the Calera Fire Department

President's Commitment to Community Award
Vulcan Materials Company
Annual Quarry Crusher Run at the Dolcito Quarry in Tarrant

Descriptions for each award can be found here.

“These awards rightfully recognize the excellence of Alabama mining professionals, who work tirelessly to ensure the well-being of their colleagues and the communities in which they operate,” said Patrick Cagle, president of AMA. “Alabama’s modern mining industry places the health and safety of our people and local communities first, and this new award series highlights individuals and companies who go above-and-beyond to reflect the core values of sustainable, 21st century mining. On behalf of AMA, I’d like to congratulate this year’s winners. We are already looking forward to honoring a new class of projects and people in 2022.”

AMA is enthusiastically leading the effort to bring the concept of sustainable mining to the United States and is the first state association to establish a sustainable mining program. Focusing diligently on sustainability efforts at the state level allows AMA to help its members set constructive goals and achieve outcomes that are meaningful to the citizens of Alabama.

Read more from AMA about safety here and sustainability here.