Steven A. Cotten, is a Founding Member of the Board of Directors of the Rebuilding Their Future Foundation, Inc. Steven is a technology consultant and the owner of Subsurface Problem Solutions, Lockport, NY. Steven holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physics and Education from Hamilton College and a Master of Science degree in Applied Geophysics from Columbia University. He has acquired over 35 years of technical experience identifying and applying a broad range of technologies to solve challenging problems and reduce operating costs related to underground coal mining.
As a 22-year employee in the R&D and IT Departments of CONSOL Energy, he initially served as a Senior Research Geophysicist designing and executing geophysical field surveys in support of coal exploration, hydrology and ground control studies, and engineering site evaluations. As Mining Section Director, he coordinated and directed numerous multidisciplinary project teams which addressed issues ranging from abandoned mine location, to mining machinery development, to new equipment and instrument design. He has intimate, firsthand knowledge of the challenges associated with developing and successfully introducing new technology and systems for the coal industry and possesses specific experience in underground instrument and equipment design and construction as well as developing, executing, and monitoring underground testing and evaluation plans. In his last role for CONSOL, he directed the project team that developed a company-wide computerized maintenance management system and executed an intensive 9-month training delivery plan to over 400 mine and preparation plant maintenance personnel at 11 different sites. He was then employed for 10 years by the Raytheon Company where he served as Project Manager for a Department of Defense contract to create and develop a novel underground navigation system and three NIOSH contracts to conceive, build, test, and demonstrate a proof-of-concept Mine Escape Vehicle, and then re-evaluate the sensor technology employed on that vehicle. Following his departure from Raytheon, he subcontracted with Raytheon to serve as infrared technology technical lead and report editor for a NIOSH contract, “Underground Vehicle Guidance Technology Refinement”. He continues as an independent contractor supporting technical investigations and research related to coal mine safety.
Steven is a certified bituminous coal miner in Pennsylvania (Certificate Number B12141), a certified Underground Coal Miner in West Virginia (Certificate Number 1-13979), and a named inventor on seven US patents.
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