A college educated engineer and army veteran, Tom has always wanted to be what he is now – an independent mine owner. Although Tom enjoys the independence of running the mine, he says the most worrisome part of the job is the responsibility for worker safety in such a dangerous industry. Tom’s had a rollercoaster career in which mining has made him a millionaire several times over and also left him bankrupt. The Cobalt Coal mine is Tom’s shot to go out on top.
After a career in telecommunications, Mike started in the coal business with Tom Roberts in 2007. Mike is the businessman in the operation. His two constant headaches on the job are the mechanical breakdowns and keeping up-to-date with the federal regulatory requirements of the mining industry to keep the mine in compliance and working. Cobalt Coal’s goal is to mine 6-8,000 clean tons of coal a month. Every breakdown, of which there are many, or violation costs the mine much needed revenue. Mike puts in a lot of time trying to minimize those losses, but it’s a tough and constant battle.
After 30+ years in the mining industry, Jerry is looking to move up to a Supervisor position and get out of the hole. Over the years he’s suffered multiple leg and shoulder injuries from mine ceiling collapses and whiplash from a snapped cable. He works alongside his son Jerry, Jr. who he’s training on the day shift and to continue the family mining tradition. Jerry is one of the most outspoken men on the shift and also the biggest prankster of the group.