Nicholas T. Camicia Remembered

Nicholas T. CamiciaNicholas Thomas Camicia passed away on May 21, 2008, at his residence, at the age of 92. Nick was born April 23, 1916, in Welch, West Virginia. He was the son of the late Antonio and Antonia Camicia. He is survived by his wife, Clara Virginia (Brown) Camicia of Greenwich; one daughter, Caren Hollenbeck of Charlotte, NC; a brother, James Camicia; two grandchildren, Cathy Martin and Scott Hollenbeck and three great grandchildren. He was predeceased by his son John Thomas Camicia; and his sisters Sally, Gilda and Margaret.

Upon graduating from Virginia Tech in 1938, Nicholas T. Camicia began his mining career with the Island Creek Coal Company in West Virginia. Within a year, at the age of 22, this son of Italian immigrants became the youngest mine superintendent in the history of the coal industry.

During WWII, Mr. Camicia served in Europe as an officer assigned to General Eisenhower’s staff. He was decorated with the Bronze Start for his part in rehabilitating coal mines in Allied-liberated nations, and Queen Juliana of the Netherlands awarded him the Orange-Nassau Medal, her nation’s highest military honor, for his exemplary service.

In 1969 he became President of the Pittston Company. The next year, he was named Chief Executive Officer of Pittston and was producer and exporter in the United States.

Active in professional organizations, Mr. Camicia served as Chairman of the American Mining Association, Bituminous Coal Operators Association, National Coal Association and the Coal Industry Advisory Board of International Energy Agency in Paris. President Ronald Reagan appointed him to the national Productivity Advisory Committee and the Committee on the President’s Private Sector Survey on Cost Control. Mr. Camicia brought about contributions to labor relations which included serving as a mediator to bring about the successful settlement in 1978 of the longest coal strike in American history.

Nicholas T. Camicia earned many awards in his lifetime, including the national Coal Associations’ Distinguished Service Award, the 1975 Man of conscience Award, and the 1978 Americanism Award.

The Department of Mining and Minerals Engineering Nicholas T. Camicia Professorship is currently held by Dr. Roe-Hoan Yoon.