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Business networking event planned at WVSU

Mar. 09, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

INSTITUTE, W.Va. -- A free networking meeting for local business people will be at the West Virginia State University Economic Development Center from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m Saturday, March 9. The Economic Development Center is located at 1506 Kanawha Blvd. in Charleston.

The event is hosted by the Black Business Association Supporting Entrepreneurs.

Launched in January by WVSU Extension Service, BBASE promotes entrepreneurship, stimulates growth and serves as a resource for black-owned businesses by providing networking and mentoring opportunities.

Sim Fryson, a local businessman, entrepreneur and former president of Sim Fryson Motor Co., will speak at the event. Refreshments will be provided.

Mechel names new CEO for W.Va. subsidiary

CHARLESTON -- Russia's Mechel OAO has named a former Charleston attorney the new chief executive officer for its Mechel Bluestone subsidiary in West Virginia.

The company announced Thursday that Stephen Douglas Williams will replace Tom Lusk. Williams has been chief operating officer since January.

Before that, Williams had worked as chief operating officer at Natural Resources International and INR Energy. He also worked for Cliffs North American Coal, Pinnacle Mining Co. and at CNX Australia. He was a lawyer with Steptoe and Johnson from 1993-99 and has a degree from the West Virginia University College of Law.

Moscow-based Mechel bought Bluestone in 2009 from the owner of The Greenbrier, Jim Justice.

Ohio's unemployment rate higher in January

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio's unemployment rate rose slightly to 7 percent in January, an increase partly attributed to more people looking for work as the economic recovery continues, according to numbers released Friday.

The state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for January was up from 6.7 percent in December and 6.8 percent in November, the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services reported.

The rate is skewed by the fact that 11,000 more people were looking for work in January than in December, jobs agency spokesman Benjamin Johnson said. An increase in job searchers is typical during an economic recovery, he said.

"When a recession ends, we expect at some point to see the labor force start to grow again as those people regain confidence and start looking for a job again," Johnson said.

Harlan to begin market for artisans, farmers

HARLAN, Ky. -- An eastern Kentucky community is planning to begin a monthly market focused on the wares of farmers and artisans.

The first event is set for April 21 at the Harlan Center.

Harlan Tourist and Convention Commission Director Brandon Pennington told the Harlan Daily Enterprise that he thinks the market will serve a need in the community. Pennington said all items offered at the market have to be either handmade or home-grown.

"We ask that all items be handmade to preserve the authenticity of the market and to keep the market from becoming a flea market atmosphere," he said. "Examples of items which will be welcomed are paintings, photography, chairs, soaps, candles, brooms, tables, sculpting, welding, metal work, glass work, rock painting, furniture, homemade candies, fruit and vegetables and more."

WVSU Extension Service to host vineyard tour

INSTITUTE, W.Va. -- The West Virginia State University Extension Service is hosting a tour of a Summersville vineyard for people interested in grape production.

The tour of Kirkwood Winery is being held on March 23. It's the first of a planned series of vineyard tours throughout the state intended to increase interest in local fruit production.

Winery staff will conduct the tour and provide information on fruit tree maintenance and other aspects of the winemaking industry.

The tour costs $40, which includes transportation. Participants will depart by bus from the West Virginia State campus in Institute.

Registration is required, and attendance is limited to 40 people. To register, contact Brad Cochran at 304-541-3301.