We are a Virginia company with roots running deep into Virginia history and environmental stewardship. The Coles Family and the Bowen Family, the largest shareholders in our company, have lived on the Coles Hill uranium site in Southside Virginia for generations. All of our full-time employees have firm ties to Southside Virginia, and, during our four years in business, we have worked earnestly to patronize Virginia companies in everything we’ve done. Our families—including parents, siblings, children, grandchildren—all have a stake in seeing that Virginia Uranium never strays from its abiding respect for Southside’s economic progress, as well as its role as a leader in environmental stewardship.
As Virginians, we are committed to bringing the best and brightest of this region into the sphere of economic energy generated by the development of our company’s resources. To that end, we have assembled a talented managerial and technical team with strong roots in Southside Virginia.
Walter Coles – President and CEO
During his 30-year career as an economic-development officer in the U.S. Foreign Service, Mr. Coles worked on economic development initiatives all over the world. Before that, he served as an officer in the U.S. Army for two tours in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and Air Medals. Since retirement, Mr. Coles has devoted himself full-time to the cattle and grain business he owns and operates on the Coles Hill property where he was born. He earned his B.S. at the Citadel and is a licensed commercial pilot.
Walter Coles, Jr. – Executive Vice President
From 1999 through 2005, Mr. Coles worked as a research analyst at UBS Investment Bank, covering companies in multiple sectors. Thereafter, he was an equity and high-yield bond analyst with Cadence Investment Partners, a New York based, event-driven hedge fund. A native of Chatham, Virginia, he holds a B.A. in economics from the University of Richmond.
Joseph Kiely – Chief Financial Officer
Currently the chief financial officer of both Virginia Uranium, Inc., and Cadence Investment Partners, Mr. Kiely has more than 20 years of experience in financial management. He has also held posts with Monarch Capital Holdings, an asset management firm ($300 million of assets), Baker Nye Greenblatt ($1 billion under management), and Simms Capital Management ($500 million). Mr. Kiely received his B.A. in business administration from Dowling College and is a certified public accountant.
Neal Keesee – Senior Legal Counsel
For over two decades, Mr. Keesee has practiced various aspects of corporate law, including mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property, contracts, computer law, tax law, financing, creditor’s rights, and venture capital. A native of Lynchburg, Virginia, Mr. Keesee earned his B.S. in accounting at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and his J.D. from the College of William & Mary. He teaches law as an adjunct professor at Washington and Lee University.
Joseph Aylor – Chief Geologist
Dr. Aylor, a native of Gretna, Virginia, has more than 30 years of experience as a geologist and environmental engineer. As a project manager, he has researched prospects, budgeted proposed projects, performed environmental site assessments, supervised drilling activities, and negotiated with regulators. He assisted the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control in the drafting of the Brownfield regulations. Dr. Aylor holds a B.A. in geology from the University of Virginia, an M.S. in geology from Arizona State University, and a Ph.D. in geology from Florida State University.
Patrick Wales – Geologist, Project Manager
As the former manager of environmental services for the Danville, Virginia, office of Dewberry & Davis, Inc., Mr. Wales oversaw all aspects of project management, including marketing, budgeting, proposal preparation, hiring and implementation of projects. He is project manager and chief spokesman for Virginia Uranium and handles media and government relations. Patrick lives down the street from his childhood home in Danville, Virginia, and holds a B.S. in geology from Radford University and an M.S. in geology from the University of Mississippi.
Stewart East - Geology Technician
A lifelong resident of the Sheva community near the Coles Hill site, Mr. East has worked in the fabrication and manufacturing industries. Most recently, he was a process support technician at Cooks Composites & Polymers in Chatham, Virginia. He is trained in Department of Transportation and Hazardous Materials compliance. Mr. East received an A.S. in general electronics and an A.S. in industrial electrical-electronics equipment servicing from Danville Community College in 2004.
Nina Beth Thornton – Controller
For nearly two decades, Ms. Thornton served as treasurer of ProMark Utility Locators, Inc., a national underground utility locating firm. From 2005 to 2007, she managed the administrative and financial duties of Mid-Atlantic Broadband Cooperative in Southside Virginia. Ms. Thornton has a B.S. from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and an A.A. from Peace College.
Lorien Huemoeller – Biologist
Raised in the Twin Springs community of Pittsylvania County, Virginia, Mrs. Huemoeller has studied population dynamics of wildlife native to Belize; interned as a park ranger for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; and helped manage a wildlife summer camp for the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. Prior to becoming Virginia Uranium’s Biologist, Lorien helped the Virginia Department of Forestry provide hurricane Katrina relief and was a professional firefighter, EMT, and relief driver for Danville, Virginia’s fire department. Lorien volunteered at Humboldt County Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, and is training to become a wildlife rehabilitator in Virginia. Lorien holds a B.S. degree in wildlife science from Virginia Tech and a Masters of natural resources from Virginia Tech.
Frances Haley – Executive Assistant
Ms. Haley, a native of Pittsylvania County, Virginia, has performed and coordinated administrative office activities for several years. Currently, she handles a wide variety of confidential administrative-support functions. Ms. Haley has an A.S. from Danville Community College.