Weekly Column

Happy Birthday, West Virginia

Ever since the historic beginning of our state, we have never failed to answer our country’s call. No demand has been too great, no danger too daunting and no trial too threatening.  The abundant natural resources of our state and the hard work and sacrifice of our people have made America stronger and safer. We mined the coal that fueled the Industrial Revolution and powered the railroads across the North American continent. We stoked the steel factories that armed our soldiers for battles all across the globe, built the war ships that plowed the oceans of the world and we have filled the ranks of our military forces in numbers far greater than should be expected of our little state.

In fact, when visitors come to West Virginia, I jump at the chance to tell them we are home to the most patriotic and hardworking people than most any state in the nation. We have fought in more wars, shed more blood and lost more lives for the cause of freedom than most any state. We have always done the heavy lifting and never complained.  I am so deeply proud of what West Virginians have accomplished and what they will continue to accomplish to protect the freedoms we hold dear. 

A West Virginian broke the sound barrier for the first time; a West Virginian did the math that put a man on the moon; for generations, West Virginians have entertained us on TV, film, and stage; West Virginians inspire us through sports at the highest level; it is not an exaggeration to say that this state has made a positive impact on every part of American life.

It is an honor and a privilege to serve West Virginia. Now more than ever, I believe the rest of the nation should come around to what West Virginians have known all along – that we are at our best when we’re working together. Regardless of where you come from, what you’ve achieved, or what your party affiliation may be, I think we can all agree that, as a statewide and a national community, we want to be more united and hopeful for the future. Together we’ve accomplished so much - from combatting the opioid epidemic and fighting for our miners’ pensions, to securing funding for the vital agencies that serve our communities, and I look forward to continuing to work together to move our home state forward in the days and years ahead. Even on a smaller scale, you can make a tremendous impact.  You can’t solve all the world’s problems, but you certainly can make a world of difference in your circle of friends, family, neighbors - whoever is in your life.

West Virginia is great because our people are great – Mountaineers who will always be free.  We are tough, independent, inventive and honest, our character shaped by the wilderness of our state – its rushing streams, its boundless blue skies, its divine forests, and its majestic mountains. We are West Virginians. And like the brave, loyal patriots who made our state the 35th star on Old Glory, our love of God and country and family and state is unshakeable.  I know that 20, 50, or another 156 years from now, that will always remain the same.

Every West Virginian contributes to our state’s amazing story and on this West Virginia Day, June 20, I encourage everyone to seize this opportunity to imagine the future of this great state – and this nation – and be proud of how far we have come and how far we will go. Happy 156th Birthday, West Virginia!



Last week, I got to visit with some of West Virginia's best and brightest at Rhododendron Girls State and at Mountaineer Boys State. I also got to enjoy a beautiful, sunny day at Coalton Days, one of my favorite festivals of the year celebrating its 25th anniversary.

Coalton Days


Girls State


Boys State



Members of my office set up tables at Boys and Girls State as well as at the WV counselors Kid Strong Conference to provide information about the nomination process to attend a military service academy. The deadline for applications is October 4 and for more information, contact



It was a privilege to talk with Wyoming County seniors via Skype last week. We discussed my efforts to protect Social Security, the HOME Meals Act I recently introduced to provide funding for senior nutrition programs like Meals on Wheels, and many other important issues in our home state.



Case Manager Terri Berkley presented a congratulatory greeting to Mikael Bosse Sr. and Edna Green of PAAC (Partnership of African American Churches) on my behalf at the 3rd Annual D.M.C (Disproportionate Minority Contact) event held at the WV State Police Academy.




To request assistance from my case team, click here.

As your U.S. Senator, I am proud to be your voice with government agencies during your time of need. My goal is for me and my staff to provide the best possible customer service for every West Virginian who contacts me needing assistance. While I have no direct jurisdiction in legal or administrative matters of any federal, state, or local agency, I welcome the opportunity to assist you in any way possible and to assure that full consideration is given to your case. See one of our recent success stories below:

Harvey Owens of Charles Town contacted the Senator’s office for assistance with his VA claim for Spousal Aid and Attendance for his wife, Edith, who has leukemia and bone cancer.  As a result of Caseworker Kim Berry's inquiry, which included a request to expedite due to medical hardship, the claim was granted resulting in a retroactive payment and an increase in his monthly benefits.


To inform our office of community events we can showcase, click here.

"Doing Business with West Virginia” 
Free informational seminar for businesses offered by the WV Purchasing Division. Seminar will include information on statewide contracts, requirements for successful vendors, and programs offered by the WV State Agency for Surplus Property. 

Fairmont – Thursday, August 8 at Fairmont State University 

Registration Link: 


To learn more, call my office Toll Free at (855) 275-5737, email me, or find me on social media: