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NETL Economist Named to Prestigious List of Young Leaders in West Virginia
NETL’s Amanda Harker Steele

NETL’s Amanda Harker Steele

Amanda Harker Steele, a research economist at NETL, has been named to a prestigious list of individuals under the age of 40 who excel in their fields and are using their talents to build a brighter future for West Virginia.

A federal employee at NETL since 2022, Harker Steele received the honor at The State Journal and WV News Generation Next: 40 Under 40 awards program held June 19 at the Robinson Grand Performing Arts Center in Clarksburg, West Virginia.

“I was born and raised in Fairmont, the county seat of Marion County, West Virginia, and I am quite proud of my roots in the Mountain State,” Harker Steele said. “I am humbled to receive this award, and I am committed to doing my best to ensure our state continues to move forward.”

The Generation Next: 40 Under 40 awards program showcases young professionals who excel in their fields and demonstrate a strong commitment to the state’s future. The program’s class of 2024 comprises individuals who are making a positive impact through their professional achievements and community activities. Being chosen for this recognition positions the recipient as a leader to watch.

At NETL, Harker Steele advances projects aimed at building a viable energy future that ensures America’s historic power-producing communities are not left behind as the nation transitions to clean energy.

In her role, Harker Steele supports several NETL research programs, including point source capture of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gas emissions, hydrogen with carbon management and CO2 removal. Her primary responsibilities are to conduct job impact assessments for technologies sponsored by NETL and serve as the Lab’s subject matter expert on energy justice.

In meeting these responsibilities, Harker Steele has been involved with the Interagency Working Group on Coal and Power Plant Communities and Economic Revitalization, the federal initiative pursuing a whole-of-government approach to create good-paying union jobs, spur economic revitalization, remediate environmental degradation and support energy workers in coal, oil and gas and power plant communities in West Virginia and across the country.

She also supports Justice40, a program that directs 40% of the overall benefits of certain federal investments, including investments in clean energy and energy efficiency and the remediation of legacy pollution, flow to disadvantaged communities.

Harker Steele earned her doctorate in agriculture and applied economics at the University of Georgia and bachelor’s degree in environmental and natural resource economics from West Virginia University. Her community activities include serving as treasurer of the Friends of the West Virginia Science Bowl Foundation, which supports an annual statewide competition to encourage students in middle and high schools to explore careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Harker Steele joined NETL as a contractor in 2019. She currently works within the Strategic Systems Analysis and Engineering Directorate’s Energy Markets Analysis Team.

In May, Harker Steele was one of 10 individuals from NETL cited for excellence by the Pittsburgh Federal Executive Board during its 2024 Excellence in Government Awards program.

NETL is a DOE national laboratory that drives innovation and delivers solutions for an environmentally sustainable and prosperous energy future. By leveraging its world-class talent and research facilities, NETL is ensuring affordable, abundant, and reliable energy that drives a robust economy and national security, while developing technologies to manage carbon across the full life cycle, enabling environmental sustainability for all Americans