West Virginia lost another good guy this week in the person of journalist Tom Miller, who died at the age of 78. Miller spent much of his career at the Huntington newspapers (there used to be two) and after his "retirement" he wrote a statehouse column called "Under the Dome" which was widely carried around the state.
Among his many accomplishments, aside from being a genuinely nice person, was the groundbreaking reporting series "Who Owns West Virginia?" in 1974. The short answer, by the way, is not West Virginians.
Millers findings were later echoed by the Appalachian Land Study in the 1980s. A few years back, my organization, the American Friends Service Committee, partnered with the WV Center on Budget and Policy to revisit the question in a report inspired by Miller's research and titled "Who Owns West Virginia in the 21st Century?"
Some things have changed since Miller's groundbreaking work, but the big things haven't. And the short answer to his question remains the same.
Thanks, Tom, for pointing the way. And for being a light shining in darkness all these years.