HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — Janet Keating, the executive director of the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition, will retire after 24 years with the organization.

Before moving into the position, Keating served four years as co-director with Dianne Bady, the group’s founder and original director.

“OVEC has grown enormously under Janet’s leadership, and it is sad to see her move on, but this is a day we’ve been preparing for,” said Bandy.

She’ll be replaced by Natalie Thompson, a Beckley native who has lived in Huntington for the past 13 years and has served as a project coordinator for nearly two years.

“Natalie’s love for our people and iconic mountains drives her passion for justice and a better quality of life for everyone—traits that are essential for OVEC’s executive director,” Keating said. “During September, I will transfer as much as I can of my 24 years of working knowledge about OVEC to her. I already know that she’s a quick study and eager to develop and apply her previous management skills to her role as a non-profit leader.”

The group’s board of directors formed a leadership transition committee to find a replacement for Keating over a year ago.

Thompson will take over the role of executive director on Oct. 1.

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