Patriot Coal announced that G. Frank Foster has been inducted into the Coal Mine Rescue Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony took place in Columbus, Ohio, during the banquet recognizing the winners of the 2013 biennial national mine rescue competition (See Awards, p. 16). Foster serves as Patriot’s director of safety compliance, with responsibility for the mine rescue teams.

John McDaniel, director of engineering and technical services, eastern operations for Arch Coal, received the “Because of You” Engineering Professional Award at the fourth Miners’ Celebration Conference held recently in Beckley, W.Va. The event celebrated the past, present and future of West Virginia’s coal mining enterprise, and recognized those who play a role in the state’s mining industry. McDaniel is responsible for providing support to Arch’s eastern operating subsidiaries in the areas of environmental and regulatory compliance. He has 31 years of service with the company and has held a variety of positions in planning, regulatory affairs and contract operations. He also serves as chairman of the West Virginia Coal Association’s Environmental Technical Committee.

Xenia Kritsos has been appointed joint company secretary for Coalspur Mines.

Norwest appointed Kurt Kost to the position of senior vice president. In this role, Kost will assist in delivering and expanding Norwest’s offerings and provide executive oversight for the environmental, water resources and field services area for Norwest’s U.S. operations. Most recently, he served as the president of Alpha Natural Resources. Steve Godard has also been appointed to the position of manager of water resources services. He recently returned to the U.S. from Brisbane, where he worked as a principal services manager for RPS Aquaterra.

WesTech Engineering appointed Rex Plaizier as president and CEO.

Ingram Barge announced several changes and promotions for its Marine Group. Dave O’Loughlin has been promoted to senior vice president, vessel operations and strategic sourcing. Brian Rafferty has been named vice president, customer service. Chuck Arnold has been promoted to vice president, business and strategic development. Dan Mecklenborg, senior vice president, chief legal officer and secretary, has assumed responsibility for custom fuel services in addition to retaining responsibility for Ingram’s legal, claims, safety and governmental affairs functions. David Sehrt, senior vice president and COO, will assume responsibility for the barge maintenance and facilities teams, as well as continue his responsibility for Ingram’s Vessel Engineering function.

Alexander Proudfoot named Ken Kirk as executive vice president and Paul Hebert as senior vice president within its Canadian Natural Resources Unit.

Has someone in your organization been promoted or do they deserve recognition for an award? If so, send the information to assistant editor Jennifer Jensen ( and we will mention them in Coal Age.