News & Media

West Virginia Teachers Honored with 2015 Arch Coal Golden Apple Awards

April 13, 2015 at 11:30 AM EDT

CHARLESTON, W.Va., April 13, 2015 – The Arch Coal Foundation presented 17 West Virginia teachers today with its Golden Apple Award.

The Golden Apple Awards are part of the Arch Coal Foundation's teacher recognition program, which recently honored 12 outstanding West Virginia classroom teachers with its highest award – the Teacher Achievement Award. Golden Apple Award recipients earned finalist status in the program, distinguishing them as being in the top tier of the 2015 nominees.

"These standout teachers challenge their students to learn at the highest levels, and then teach them how to succeed," said Russ Lorince, vice president of external affairs for Arch Coal. "The judges, all past recipients of the Teacher Achievement Award, had a very difficult time this year determining the 12 top recipients because of the quality of the applications. The teachers we honor today are outstanding, and we hope they are nominated and compete again next year."

Teachers are nominated for the Arch Coal awards by the public. The program is 27 years old and is West Virginia's longest-running, privately sponsored teacher recognition program.

Teachers receiving Golden Apple Awards are:

Tina AkersHenry J. Kaiser Elementary SchoolRavenswood
Jim BidwellGrafton High SchoolGrafton
Connie BowersMadison Elementary SchoolParkersburg
Eric BrandNutter Fort Primary SchoolClarksburg
Aleta CrottyMercer Elementary SchoolPrinceton
Helen DurginGeorge Washington Elementary SchoolEleanor
Joshua FixCharleston Catholic High SchoolCharleston
Jessica HartmanUnion Educational ComplexMt. Storm
Mary HovatterBelington Middle SchoolBelington
Mary Jo JividenGeorge Washington Elementary SchoolEleanor
Erika KloseWinfield Middle SchoolWinfield
Beth LyonsHedgesville Elementary SchoolHedgesville
Charity MarstillerWildwood Middle SchoolShenandoah Junction
Rhonda RitchieHenry J. Kaiser Elementary SchoolRavenswood
Sheila RuddlePendleton County Middle SchoolFranklin
MeriBeth UnderwoodWoodrow Wilson High SchoolBeckley
Catherine WeberHite-Saunders Elementary SchoolHuntington

The Teacher Achievement Awards are underwritten by the Arch Coal Foundation and are supported in program promotion by the West Virginia Department of Education, the West Virginia Education Association and the West Virginia Library Commission. Arch Coal and the Arch Coal Foundation have a long history of supporting educational and community causes in West Virginia. The Arch Coal Foundation also supports teacher recognition or grants programs in Wyoming and Colorado, as well as a number of other education-related causes.

St. Louis-based Arch Coal, Inc. (NYSE:ACI) is one of the world's top coal producers for the global steel and power generation industries, serving customers on five continents. Its network of mining complexes is the most diversified in the United States, spanning every major coal basin in the nation. The company controls more than 5 billion tons of high-quality metallurgical and thermal coal reserves, with access to all major railroads, inland waterways and a growing number of seaborne trade channels. In West Virginia, Arch Coal and its subsidiaries employ about 1,800 people. For more information, visit