The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Wyoming Report

November 21, 2007

Extension agent enjoys making a difference

Steve Clark walked away from a dozen years with the U. S. Department of Defense in Indianapolis, Ind., to volunteer with AmeriCorps VISTA in Mullens, W.Va.

“I decided it was time for a life change,” Clark explained.

He began looking for opportunities to volunteer, something in economic development or community development.

“A life in service to others is the only life worth living,” is the maxim Clark uses to guide his own life.

“At the end of the day, I want to look back and be able to say I had a purpose.

“I felt like I could make a difference — that’s a powerful thing to me.”

His focus is helping people and helping Wyoming County.

“I want to help make Wyoming County an even better place to live and work,” he emphasized. “I enjoy partnering with the different organizations.

“So even the occasional bad day is a good day for me,” he said.

Despite the fact that he was working his way up the success ladder at the U. S. Department of Defense, he longed for a different way of life.

“Life shouldn’t be about money. I was moving up the corporate ladder, but I thought my time would be better spent focused on what God wanted me to do,” he explained.

Clark credits his parents, Michael and Rhonda Clark, who still live in Indianapolis, Ind., for his “guiding and basic philosophies.”

“I’ve lived a good life; I was raised in a Christian home. They taught me what is important, my core values,” he said.

He holds a bachelor and a master’s degree in business administration, graduating from Indiana and Ball State universities.

Clark completed his year of volunteer service at the Rural Appalachian Improvement League (RAIL) in Mullens, but decided he liked the area and wanted to stay. Currently he serves as an economic development extension agent for West Virginia State University, with an office in the Wyoming County Economic Development Authority office in Pineville.

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