The Director of the West Virginia Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training will retire at the end of the month.

C.A. Phillips, who has been director since August 2011 and was acting director for about a year before that, made the announcement Thursday and is retiring effective December 31.

Phillips is a former miner and a United Mine Workers of America safety representative who started working for the state in 2001.

He took over in November 2010 after Ron Wooten resigned during the the investigation of the Upper Big Branch mine disaster that killed 29 men.

Governor Earl Ray Tomblin has not indicated who will be his replacement.

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