Kent Leonhardt, West Virginia Commissioner of Agriculture, to Deliver Inspiring Keynote Address at The American Legion Mountaineer Boys State!

Kent Leonhardt is a dedicated public servant and experienced farmer who has been serving the State of West Virginia since 2014. After being elected to the West Virginia State Senate representing the 2nd Senatorial District, which encompassed several rural counties, Kent went on to be elected as the West Virginia Commissioner of Agriculture in 2016, now serving his second term.

Kent’s passion for farming developed at a young age while serving in the United States Marine Corps. In 1982, he purchased an abandoned farm near Blacksville, WV, and together with his wife Shirley, revitalized it. For two decades, they raised sheep, cattle, and goats, as well as cultivated crops and sold hay when there was a surplus.

Kent’s education includes a Bachelor’s Degree in Wildlife Management from the University of Missouri, where he took courses in agriculture, natural resources, and environmental protection. He also holds a Master’s in Business Management from Central

Mastering the Art of Leadership: Discover the Secrets to Effective Leadership with Mark McMillion, a West Point Graduate and Internationally Seasoned Leader

Mark McMillion is a seasoned leader with over 25 years of experience, honing his leadership skills in diverse environments across the globe. As a graduate of West Point, he received unparalleled training in the art of leadership. With a strong foundation in engineering, Mark understands the importance of data-driven decision-making. His extensive military career included assignments in Germany, Norway, and two combat tours in Iraq, where he held various leadership positions.

Mark firmly believes that true leadership extends beyond giving orders or disciplinary actions. Building mutual trust, loyalty, and respect for others are essential qualities for effective leadership in any setting. Throughout his career, he held pivotal roles such as platoon leader, West Point assistant professor, battalion executive officer, and exercise planner for NATO. Each experience contributed significantly to his personal growth and leadership development.

Working alongside exceptional sergeants as a platoon leader, Mark learned that leading great teams often involves providing

Unlocking Financial Success: Join us for a Keynote Presentation by Edward Jones, featuring Lisa Cain and Thomas Newbrough!


Edward Jones is a prominent financial institution that offers a wide range of corporate capabilities. With a focus on individual investors, the company provides comprehensive investment advisory services, personalized financial planning, and wealth management solutions. Edward Jones boasts a network of highly skilled financial advisors who collaborate closely with clients to understand their unique goals and develop tailored strategies. The firm’s capabilities encompass retirement planning, education funding, estate and legacy planning, as well as investment options including stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and insurance products. Guided by a commitment to long-term relationships and exceptional client service, Edward Jones strives to empower individuals, families, and businesses to achieve their financial objectives and secure a prosperous future.

For more information on Edward Jones visit:


Lisa Cain is an experienced financial advisor with over 19 years of industry expertise, having joined Edward Jones in 2012. With a commitment to providing exceptional service, Lisa

JB McCuskey: Leading with Transparency as State Auditor

John B. “JB” McCuskey, the 21st State Auditor of West Virginia, is currently serving his second term, having been first elected in 2016. Prior to his role as Auditor, he served two terms in the House of Delegates and practiced law in Charleston.

As Auditor, McCuskey has made it his priority to establish an efficient, effective, and transparent government. Under his leadership, West Virginia has become the most transparent state in the nation, providing citizens with real-time access to data on how their tax dollars are utilized through McCuskey has also introduced the Public Integrity and Fraud Unit, leading over 200 investigations into local governments and uncovering more than $2.5 million in fraudulent activities.

A key tool in the fight against fraud and abuse is the state Purchasing Card (P-Card) program. Over the past five years, McCuskey has successfully advocated for increased adoption of the P-Card among agencies, boards, commissions, and

Senator Joe Manchin Extends Warm Welcome to Mountaineer Boys State Participants in Special Video Message!

Joe Manchin, a U.S. Senator representing West Virginia, has been serving the state since November 15, 2010. Born and raised in the coal mining town of Farmington, Senator Manchin deeply understands the values cherished by all West Virginians—family, common sense, fairness, and hard work. His grandfather, an Italian immigrant and town grocer known as Papa Joe, instilled in him the importance of serving the public, while his grandmother, Mama Kay, inspired his commitment to public service through her unwavering compassion for the less fortunate.

Throughout his political career, spanning from his days as a state legislator to his six-year tenure as Governor and now as a Senator, Joe Manchin has remained dedicated to his philosophy of “retail government.” This approach centers on connecting with constituents and prioritizing their needs and concerns. In Washington, he strives to bring the same spirit of bipartisanship that has guided him throughout his life, working across

ALMBS Keynote Speaker Feature Image

WVARNG BG Holt speaks to ALMBS citizens

WVARNG BG Holt – Brig. Gen. Murray E. “Gene” Holt is the Assistant Adjutant General – Army and commander of the West Virginia Army National Guard.  As the Assistant Adjutant General, he provides command and control over all Army National Guard forces assigned to the state and is the principal advisor to the Adjutant General on all matters related to the Army National Guard.

Brig. Gen. Holt enlisted in the West Virginia Army National Guard in 1985 and received his commission through the Reserve Officer Training Corps at West Virginia State University in May of 1990 after completing his undergraduate education in accounting. Brig. Gen. Holt began his military career as a platoon leader in the 3664th Maintenance Company and later as a press officer and commander of the 153rd Public Affairs Detachment. Since that time, he has served in the engineer branch in a myriad of positions including construction management officer, engineer

President E. Gordon Gee

WVU President E. Gordon Gee speaks to ALMBS citizens

Currently serving for a second time as president of West Virginia University, Dr. E. Gordon Gee has been a leader in higher education for more than three decades. In 2009 Time magazine named him one of the top 10 university presidents in the United States. Recently, the website Great Value Colleges named him the nation’s top university president. In addition to his service at West Virginia University, Gee served as president of The Ohio State University (twice), Vanderbilt University, Brown University, and the University of Colorado.

Born in Vernal, Utah, Gee graduated from the University of Utah with an honors degree in history and earned his J.D. and Ed.D. degrees from Columbia University. Before starting his career in higher education, he clerked under Chief Justice David T. Lewis of the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals and was a judicial fellow and staff assistant to

Senator Manchin Keynotes ALMBS Graduation Assembly

Senator Manchin has served in several leadership capacities on various associations, including: Chairman of the National Governors Association, Chairman of the Southern States Energy Board, President of the Council of State Governments, Chairman of the Democratic Governors Association and Chairman of the Southern Governors’ Association.

Senator Manchin served as Secretary of State from 2000 to 2004, and his office was known for excellent customer service. He was a state legislator from 1982 to 1996, where he earned a reputation for standing up for West Virginians.

Senator Manchin became a successful businessman after attending West Virginia University on a football scholarship.

Senator Manchin is an avid pilot, outdoorsman, hunter, angler and motorcyclist. He has been married for more than four decades to the former Gayle Conelly of Beckley. They have three children: Heather, Joseph IV and Brooke, and are the proud grandparents of Joseph V, Sophie, Kelsey, Madeline, Chloe, Jack, Carly, Vivian, Beaux and

US Representative Carol Miller Addresses ALMBS

Congresswoman Carol Miller represents West Virginia’s Third Congressional District. Miller serves on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, the Oversight and Reform Committee, and the

House Select Committee on Climate Crisis in the U.S. House of Representatives. Miller’s focus in Congress is creating jobs, diversifying the economy, innovating and improving infrastructure, protecting America’s borders, and supporting West Virginia’s energy industries like coal, oil, and gas.

Prior to her election to Congress in 2018, Congresswoman Miller served in the West Virginia House of Delegates from 2006 to 2017 where she rose to become the first female Majority Whip. In addition to her public service, Carol is active in her community and is a former member of the Women’s Heart Advisory Board, St. Mary’s Regional Heart Institute, Marshall University Society of Yeager Scholars, West Virginia Commission for the Arts, and Lily’s Place, as well as many other organizations.

A mother of two and grandmother of five,