Environmental Quality Protection, Beautification

Appalachian Voices



Appalachian Voices is a leading nonprofit advocate for a just economy and healthy environment in the Appalachian region. We bring people together to promote the ongoing shift from dirty, harmful energy resources like fracked-gas pipelines and coal from mountaintop removal mining, to clean, renewable energy affordable and accessible to all.

Ruling Year


Principal Officer

Tom Cormons J.D.

Deputy Executive Director

Kate Boyle

Main Address




environment, Appalachian, water quality, mountaintop removal, coal





Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Natural Resource Conservation and Protection (C30)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (C01)

Pollution Abatement and Control Services (C20)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Social Media


Programs + Results

What we aim to solve

Appalachian Voices is working to address a host of complex, interconnected challenges facing our region that act as barriers to a swift and just transition to clean energy, economic alternatives to fossil fuels, the full enforcement of environmental laws, and serious action on climate change.

Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

New Economy Program

Energy Democracy Progran

No New Investments in Fossil Fuels

End Mountaintop Removal Program

Where we work

Our Results

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one. These quantitative program results are self-reported by the organization, illustrating their committment to transparency, learning, and interest in helping the whole sector learn and grow.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Total number of organization members

Population(s) served

No target populations selected

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success


Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

How will they know if they are making progress?

What have they accomplished so far and what's next?

We envision an Appalachia with healthy, intact ecosystems and generative local economies that allow communities to thrive.

Based on the understanding that our theory of change must not solely exist at the community level but also in the state capitals and Washington, D.C., Appalachian Voices has cultivated a broad range of skills and strategies including: - Collaborative Leadership and Stakeholder Engagement: Appalachian Voices’ credibility, deep community roots, and cultural sensitivity position us to lead collaborative efforts and ensure there is a diversity of voices at the decision-making table. We network with a broad range of allies from the public and private sectors to build consensus around shared goals and expand the constituencies advocating for more equitable clean energy policies. - Grassroots Power-building: Local citizens are the experts of their own lives and must have a say in the decisions that affect their families and futures. Appalachian Voices invests at the grassroots level to develop community leadership and organizing capacity and to integrate local efforts with larger strategic campaigns. Our campaigns are geared toward helping affected stakeholders through boots-on-the-ground and digital outreach activities. - Technical and Policy Expertise: Appalachian Voices’ staff includes scientists, attorneys, journalists, a former state regulator, and a range of complementary aptitudes that equip us to inform and support our strategies with the best data-driven analysis, and to serve as a trusted resource for community members, decision-makers, and the media. - Clean Energy and Economic Transition Policy Advocacy: We build public and political support for policies that incentivize equitable clean energy growth and generative, local economic development. We share our knowledge directly through lobbying, expert testimony, scientific data, and public comments, and we help residents hold their representatives accountable. - Strategic Communications: Appalachian Voices utilizes a range of communications channels—including national, state, and local newspapers, television, and radio, our popular bimonthly publication, The Appalachian Voice, and social and other digital media—to inform the public discourse on our issues and educate and mobilize target audiences with resonant and motivating messages. - Providing Training and Expertise: Where appropriate and possible, we offer resources and training to help our allies organize their communities. Over the years, for example, we have trained hundreds of citizens to monitor the health of their watersheds. - Commitment to Continual Improvement: We evaluate our tactics and develop intersectional strategies that require collaboration between program teams and leadership staff and we strive to be an adaptive organization, responding to emerging challenges and opportunities while staying true to our mission.

Appalachian Voices has grown into a powerful force for change. We now have a staff of nearly 30 professionals representing centuries of combined experience in four offices across three states. Our ambitious plans reflect this wealth of institutional knowledge, our proven record of success, and the belief that committed individuals and philanthropic entities will join us in the pursuit of our vision.

Appalachian Voices places a high priority on internally assessing the impact of our work and learning from past experience. In developing our new Strategic Plan, we used logic modeling exercises to ensure that our four key programmatic objectives, strategies, and outcomes reflect the urgency and importance of our vision. Having detailed and clearly defined outputs and outcomes enhances our ability to evaluate our impact and our progress toward long-range goals. The Strategic Plan also resulted in the creation of a fifth, non-programmatic objective focused on optimizing our organization by improving structures and protocols that support effective leadership and management, communication across and within teams, and provide the capacity necessary to accomplish the work. The goals of the fifth objective include a uniform system for tracking our work and evaluating our impact, using logic model outputs and other tools to establish key metrics across all departments, as well as the routine evaluation of policies and practices to foster a healthy and effective workplace. Additionally, each of our programs engages in a detailed annual work-planning process that involves reviewing progress and effectiveness over the past year to inform the development of the next year’s objectives, strategies, and tactics. Throughout the year, each program tracks its impact and progress toward the goals identified in its annual work plan and refines its tactics in weekly team meetings and several in-depth planning sessions throughout the year.

Notable recent results under the four objectives identified in Appalachian Voices' Strategic Plan are detailed in the paragraphs below. Building a New Appalachian Economy from the Ground Up: Appalachian Voices was instrumental in passing HB 1252 through the Virginia House of Delegates, a bill that extends power purchase eligibility to tax-exempt entities in the commonwealth. We helped a cohort of Southwest VA communities achieve SolSmart designation by the U.S. Department of Energy. We secured federal funding for the Abandoned Mine Lands Pilot Program in 2019 and submitted or facilitated three successful applications for funding. Additionally, we held a RECLAIM Act fly-in which resulted in upwards of 60 congressional and agency meetings and increased support for passage of the bipartisan coal-community transition policy. Transforming our Energy System to Serve the Public Interest: Appalachian Voices was a prominent voice opposing a Dominion Energy rate bill that would have allowed the company to reap massive profits at their customers’ expense and motivated Virginia legislators to strip the provision from the bill. We levied a $30 million penalty against Duke Energy for mismanaging coal ash in North Carolina. We’ve supported electric cooperative members in Tennessee by providing workshops, research assistance, and skills training, and assisted in forming the “Powell Valley Electric Cooperative Member Voices” to make their co-op more transparent and responsive to the needs of its members. Preventing New Investments in Fossil Fuels: We submitted technical comments to the State Water Control Board on behalf of the VA Environmental Justice Collaborative. Because of our efforts, there was unprecedented engagement in permitting decisions by VA State’s Water Control Board and Air Pollution Control Board. A federal appeals court issued a stay of a water quality permit for the MVP stream crossing in response to a motion filed by Appalachian Mountain Advocates on behalf of Appalachian Voices and our allies. Our NC team generated turnout for a series of public hearings where citizens voiced their concerns about the proposed MVP Southgate. Our staunch opposition to the proposed ACP and MVP has contributed to billions of dollars in cost increases and significant delays in the pipelines’ permit schedules. Addressing Coal’s Legacy: We strongly opposed Trump's nominee to lead the federal Office of Surface Mining and, after raising public awareness, the nominee withdrew his name from consideration. In TN, Clear Fork Mine was denied a bond release and withdrew a Phase III bond release application due to Appalachian Voices and our allies. We investigated and exposed loopholes in federal surface mining laws in Central Appalachian states and published a peer-reviewed study mapping the extensive footprint of mountaintop removal since 1985. Additionally, we sought legal action against Duke Energy for Clean Water Act violations at the Belews Creek Plant.

External Reviews


Appalachian Voices

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  • Forms 990 for 2018, 2017 and 2016
  • A Pro report is also available for this organization.

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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FREE: Gain immediate access to the following:

  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2018, 2017 and 2016
  • A Pro report is also available for this organization.

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Board Leadership Practices

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Not Applicable


Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Not Applicable


Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Not Applicable


Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

Not Applicable


Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?

Not Applicable