Nicholas T. Camicia made many significant contributions to the progress of the coal industry over a career that spanned half a century. Nick Camicia’s enlightened contributions to labor relations; his innovations in coal mining practice, market development, mine safety, and transportation; and his service to his government all serve to distinguish him as one of our very best.
Nick Camicia graduated from Virginia Tech and began his career in 1938 as a laborer at an Island Creek Coal Company mine in West Virginia. A year later, at the age of 22, Nick became the youngest man in the coal industry to be promoted to the position of mine superintendent.
During World War II, Nick Camicia served in Europe as an officer assigned to General Eisenhower’s staff. He was decorated with the Bronze Star for his performance in rehabilitating the coal mines of Allied-liberated countries. Queen Juliana of the Netherlands awarded Nick Camicia the Orange-Nassau Medal, her nation’s highest military honor, in recognition of his exemplary service both during and after the war.
Nick Camicia returned to Island Creek Coal Company and rose through the executive ranks. In 1964, he was elected Executive Vice President and named to Island Creek’s Board of Directors. Over the next five years, he also served as President of two General Dynamics Corp. coal subsidiaries.
In 1969, Nick Camicia joined The Pittston Company as its President. He became CEO in 1970 and served as Chairman and CEO from 1976 to 1983. Under Nick’s guidance, Pittston became the leading independent coal producer and exporter in the United States.
Nick Camicia was active in the American Mining Congress, the Bituminous Coal Operator’s Association, and the National Coal Association, and he served as Chairman of each. Nick also served as Chairman of the Coal Industry Advisory Board of the International Energy Agency, headquartered in Paris. In these national and international forums, Nick Camicia found ways to bring harmony and consensus among divergent groups dealing with difficult issues. President Reagan named Nick to the National Productivity Advisory Committee and to the Committee on the President’s Private Sector Survey on Cost Control.
Nick Camicia received AIME’s Erskine Ramsay Medal and the National Coal Association’s Distinguished Service Award. For his dedicated civic leadership, humanitarian services, and championship of human rights causes, Nick received the 1975 Man of Conscience Award and the 1978 Americanism award.
Nick Camicia’s career exemplifies the American dream that an immigrant’s son can rise to positions of responsibility and leadership through dedication, perseverance, and hard work. Nick Camicia is held in high esteem by his friends, colleagues, and associates as an energetic, enthusiastic, and thoughtful industry leader, a devoted family man, and a true and loyal friend.