Board Members and Staff

Voting Board Members

Charles L. (Larry) Harris

Director, Chairman of the Board

Dr. Harris received a bachelor’s in chemistry and Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Illinois. He joined the faculty at West Virginia University in 1972, conducting research and teaching graduate and professional students. Currently, he is Professor Emeritus of Biochemistry at the WVU School of Medicine.. Through grassroots efforts in Trout Unlimited, Dr. Harris has been an advocate for environmental protection and wilderness designation to protect coldwater fisheries. He served as Secretary and then  Chairman of the National Leadership Council and Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Trout Unlimited, a national conservation organization. He served on Morgantown’s Green Team and is an appointed member of the West Virginia Governor’s Public Advisory Council of the Department of Environmental Protection. He also is a board member of the West Virginia Land Trust.  As a board member of ASF, he will help raise awareness of the organization, create long term plans for targeting projects consistent with the organization’s mission and develop ASF’s grant program.

Dan Taylor

Director, Chief Executive Officer, Board Secretary

Dan Taylor is the current representative from the West Virginia Sierra Club’s Executive Committee. He has worked over the last decade in environmental organizing in West Virginia with the Marshall University Student Environmental Action Coalition and the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition, and in community economic development with Create Huntington and the West Virginia Community Development Hub. He is currently campaign manager for a US House of Representatives candidate in West Virginia’s 2nd district.


Joy Oakes

Director, President, Board Treasurer

Since 2001, Joy M. Oakes been a leader with the National Parks Conservation Association based in Washington, D.C. Joy serves as Senior Director in the Mid-Atlantic region, overseeing NPCA’s activities in five states and the District of Columbia.

Joy has worked to advance clean air protections throughout her professional career. Soon after joining NPCA, she helped establish and, for a time, led NPCA’s “clean air for parks and people” campaign to defend and strengthen Clean Air Act protections. She led NPCA’s engagement in appealing Longview’s Clean Air Act permit, helped to craft the 2004 settlement that required lower emissions and additional emissions monitoring, and also provided funding to mitigate the impacts from acid rain and greenhouse gas emissions. Because clean water is essential to the health of the more than 50 national parks in the Chesapeake watershed and their community neighbors, Joy helped found the Choose Clean Water Coalition in 2009, now with 200+ organizations working together for clean water policies and practices.

Prior to joining NPCA, Joy worked for the Sierra Club for 16 years, first in California and then in the Appalachian region. Joy has deep roots in rural Virginia culture with an ongoing interest in regenerative agriculture. She graduated magna cum laude from Duke University with a degree in religion. She and her husband, Tom, have two sons. Joy enjoys being with her family, exploring and learning about history, culture and the natural world, and gardening for native plants and animals. Her volunteer activities include being a leader in a successful campaign to preserve the moratorium on uranium mining in Virginia, and volunteering at church.

Non-Voting Board Members

Stephen Nelson

Chief Operating Officer, Longview Power

Steve joined Longview in January 2014 to manage the plant rehabilitation work with over 36 years of industry experience encompassing the key aspects of power plant operations and maintenance. His extensive experience in generation asset strategy development and implementation, financial due diligence, program management, maintenance engineering and organizational/technical troubleshooting has been applied to most generation technologies including hydro, nuclear, solar, biomass, coal, oil and pas power generation. He has significant experience in troubleshooting plant equipment, plant organizations and aligning an assets capabilities with key business objectives.  Prior to Longview, Mr. Nelson worked for Sacramento Utility District, Babcock & Wilcox, Pacific Gas & Electric, PPL Montana, Aptech Engineering Services and Black & Veatch. Throughout Steve’s Career, he has worked with regulated utilities, merchant power companies, municipals and financing entities throughout North America, Asia, Europe and Africa. Mr. Nelson has a BS Mechanical Engineering degree from California State University, Sacramento, and a MBA from Saint Mary’s College.


Executive Director

Shanda Minney

Ms. Minney comes to ASF with over 25 years of experience in the non-profit arena.  Before joining ASF, she served as Executive Director of the West Virginia Rivers Coalition for over four years.  Shanda has experience in working for a wide range of non-profit organizations in areas including environmental campaigning, advocacy, international development, philanthropy, policy analysis, and has taught international environmental issues at the Masters level.  Previous employers include the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington DC and the non-profit Center for Urban Watershed Renewal based in Massachusetts.  In addition, Shanda has spent extensive time living and working overseas, where former employers include Friends of the Earth UK, Care International, Marie Stopes International and the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London. Shanda has an Undergraduate Degree in International Relations and International Politics from The George Washington University, and a Masters degree in Development Studies from the University of London.  Shanda resides in Elkins, West Virginia.