Senator Joe Manchin Speaks to ALMBS

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.

Sen. 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.

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

Sen. 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,

Dr. Stephen Smoot Speaks to ALMBS

Dr. Stephen Smoot

Graduated from Ripley High School in 1992. Earned Masters in History and Political Science at Marshall, Doctorate in history at West Virginia University. Taught history in college for 10 years, five of them at Potomac State. Served as Director of Academic Programs for the National Journalism Center in Washington DC for three years. Have presented at the Society of Military History, the Virginia Forum, and elsewhere and have had work published in the Journal of the Alleghenies, Human Events, the State Journal, Jackson View, Town Hall, Daily Caller, and Gate House Media newspapers. I currently am Eastern Panhandle Director for Congressman Alex Mooney based in Martinsburg. Dr. Smoot is married, has two children, and lives in Keyser.

WVU Professor Emeritus Forest J. “Jack” Bowman Speaks to ALMBS

Bowman, a native of Petersburg, W.Va., enrolled at WVU in 1956 and served as president of the freshman class. He was elected student body president in 1959-1960. Bowman was a member of the social fraternity Phi Kappa Psi, Helvetia, Sphinx and Mountain. He also was a member of the Army ROTC.

After graduation, Bowman attended the WVU College of Law where he served as associate editor of the West Virginia Law Review. As one of three outstanding graduates, Bowman received the Patrick Duffy Koontz Award upon graduation in 1963.

Bowman served four years with the Judge Advocate Generals Corps in the U.S. Army after graduation. After his service, he practiced law briefly in Charleston and then became the Deputy Commissioner of Workers Compensation in West Virginia, and in 1974, Bowman was named the first Administrative Director of the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals.

In 1979 Bowman joined the WVU College of Law

Chelsea Costello with Inspire WV Speaks to ALMBS

Chelsea has been involved with youth development programs since 2006. She has participated in domestic and international exchanges which have allowed her to travel all over the world including South Africa, Nicaragua, Ghana, and Ethiopia. Through these diverse community outreach programs, she has developed a passion for serving at the grassroots level and particularly enjoys working with young people.

Chelsea is a West Virginia native and a graduate of West Virginia University where she earned a Bachelors of Science in Psychology in 2010. Throughout her undergraduate studies she was an active member of her higher education community. While completing her thesis with the Sleep Lab in the Behavioral Neuroscience department, she actively participated in the student-run Psychology Club as a volunteer, historian and secretary. Chelsea also volunteered with local nonprofit organizations including the Ronald McDonald House and Child Advocacy Center.

Most recently Chelsea returned

Joe Berry Jr. WV Operations Manager of CONSOL Energy Speaks to ALMBS


Joe Berry Jr. has over 13 years of experience with the company and in that time has held positions of Operations Manager, District Operations Superintendent, Production Manager, Project Manager, Project Engineer, and Electrical Engineer. He has worked for CONSOL Energy Inc. in 7 different states, WV, PA, OH, VA, KY, IN, and IL.

Joe Berry Jr. graduated from West Virginia University with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering. He also worked for an Architectural Engineering firm for 3 years as an Electrical Engineer prior to joining CONSOL Energy Inc. Joe has experience in Drilling, Completions, Production, Construction, Pipeline Design and Installation, Electrical, and Communications. Joe has worked with deep shale wells (Marcellus), Coal Bed Methane wells, and shallow oil and gas wells.

Colonel Douglas L. Flohr, US Army (retired) Speaks to ALMBS

Douglas Flohr served honorably in the United States Army for over 28 years. He was commissioned in the Infantry, and served in numerous command and staff positions including, Assistant Professor of Military Science at West Virginia University, the 75th Ranger Regiment, and Military Assistant to the Secretary of the Army. Colonel (Retired) Flohr completed multiple tours within Ranger Training Brigade as a battalion and brigade operations officer, and as both battalion and brigade commander.

During his most recent deployment to Iraq, he served as the personal military advisor to the Commander of the Iraqi Ground Forces Command (IGFC).

His most recent assignment was as the Director, Biometrics Center of Excellence in Clarksburg, West Virginia.

Doug Flohr’s education includes a Bachelor of Arts degree in History, a Master of Arts degree in Education from West Virginia University, and Master’s degree in Strategic Studies from the United

American Legion Department of West Virginia Commander Speaks to ALMBS

Fred B. Buchanan was elected and installed as Department Commander for the Department of West Virginia on July 12, 2014. He is eligible for The American Legion by virtue of his Naval Service during the Viet Nam era as a Hospital Corpsman. Fred has been a member of Huntington Post 16 for 33 years and is an Honorary Life Member, a PUFL member, a dual member with the Sons of The American Legion and is active with the Post 16 Riders Chapter. He has held many offices in the Post including Commander and has been Post Adjutant for the past 13 years. He has served the Department of West Virginia as Chaplain, District Commander, Vice Commander, National Parade Chairman and Chair of several committees. He has served the National American Legion as a Vice Chairman of the National Americanism Commission as well as several committees. He has been

Sons of The American Legion Detachment of West Virginia Commander Rocky Fox Speaks to ALMBS

Rocky Allen Fox was born in Berkeley Springs to Asher E.and Violet V. Smith-Fox on July 22,1958. Rocky attended Berkeley Grade School and graduated from Berkeley Springs High School in 1978. While in high school Rocky excelled in the sport of wrestling ,earning the title of By-State Champion three consecutive years. During high school Rocky attend James Rumsey Vo-Tec earning a journeyman title in masonry. Rocky is an avid whitetail deer hunter and has been with several nephews and a grandson as they bagged their first big one.

After working as a mason and construction for many years he now has worked for Morgan County School Board for the last thirteen years. He loves to interact with the students at Pleasant View Elementary as well as the teachers and parents.

Rocky has held nearly every office in his squadron and is presently serving as Finance Officer.

Medal of Honor Recipient Hershel “Woody” Williams Speaks to ALMBS

Corporal, U.S. Marine Corps, 21st Marines, 3rd Marine Division

The first time the five foot six, nineteen-year-old Hershel “Woody” Williams tried to join the Marines, in the fall of 1942, he was too short. The second time he tried, a few months later, he wasn’t: The Corps relaxed its height requirements. He immediately enlisted. He was sent to the Pacific with the 3rd Marine Division and placed in a flamethrower/demolition unit.

Williams took part in the invasion of Guam, which seemed horrific—until he was sent to Iwo Jima the following year. The beach area in Guam was clear and relatively undefended, and the Marines could advance into the jungle. At Iwo, all the jungle cover had been blown away, and the beach became a slaughterhouse.

His company was supposed to hit the beach on February 20, 1945, but there were so many Marines stuck on

Tim Lankford Assistant Director of Education for The American Legion National Headquarters

Tim Lankford Assistant Director of Education Attends ALMBS

Tim is the Assistant Director of Education for The American Legion National Headquarters. After growing up in rural Mississippi, Tim joined the U.S. Marines of which he is a proud veteran. After a brief stint with the Memphis Police Department, Tim finished his Bachelor of Science in Education at The University of Memphis. He was inducted into Teach for America and moved to Indianapolis, IN upon graduation. While teaching, Tim earned his Masters of Arts in Teaching Secondary Education from Marian University. He left the classroom after 4.5 years to pursue his passions of education and advocacy for veterans by accepting his current role.

Tim volunteers as mentor with the Starfish Initiative, as a local leader for Team Red, White, and Blue, and at his local post – University Veterans Post 360. He also enjoys running, the gun range, his dogs, exploring outdoors, gaming, and writing. He