Harlan County | Kentuckians For The Commonwealth

Chapter: Harlan County

In Harlan County and eastern Kentucky, we have a rich culture, natural beauty, valuable resources such as mountains, forests and water, and a history worth preserving. We are a chapter of KFTC because we believe that these assets and characteristics define who we are, and in preserving and protecting them we are defending a way of life and leaving what is most special about this place for future generations.

Harlan County residents helped create KFTC, and we are one of its earliest chapters. Our local chapter was built on the dedication and struggles of many who came before us, and since 1981 we’ve continued their efforts. Through the years, we have been involved in successful campaigns to save the upper elevations of Black Mountain (Kentucky’s highest peak) from strip mining and logging, help communities win water lines and a new bridge, and so much more.

Today we are working to build new power in the mountains to protect the water and a way of life threatened by destructive mining methods, while  supporting KFTC’s broader efforts to make coal mines safer for miners, fully fund schools and keep college affordable, bring clean energy jobs to this area and expand voting rights.

Recent Activities

KFTC members get the Blue Ribbon!

Last night's marathon Public Input meeting marked the end of this important stage of the Blue Ribbon Tax Commission's process for recommending state tax reforms. Although a few good folks had to leave before they could deliver their statement – the meeting ran more than an hour over time – the call for progressive tax reforms and adequate revenue for health, education, and environmental protection and clean energy was loud and clear. Sixteen of the speakers lined up were KFTC members, some coming as concerned Kentuckians and some wearing the hat of an ally organization.

H2O-rganizing builds momentum in eastern Kentucky

Building on the successes of the first Community Organizing & Water Testing Training held in Prestonsburg back in May, over 30 people gathered in Whitesburg this past Saturday to learn, share, and grow together. Katie, an attendee who lives a few feet from the North Fork of the Kentucky River in Hazard said, "we came here to learn about community building, and in a way that’s really what we did here within this whole group.”

Transylvania students tour southeast KY with KFTC leaders

At the home of Elmer Lloyd

Students and professors from Transylvania University in Lexington spent a week at Camp Blanton in Harlan County earlier this month.  During their time, they connected with KFTC leaders from all over Harlan, Letcher and Perry counties to learn about the land, culture and people of east Kentucky and beyond. They also spent some time in our Whitesburg KFTC office to screen our 30th anniversary film, I Was There: The first 30 years of KFTC. Below are photos from their experience.

KFTC House Party on Wallins Creek!

Last week New Power Leader Jack Ball welcomed friends and neighbors into his home for some good food, a great film, and conversation about his vision for Harlan County and beyond. Folks attending the party watched I Was There: The First Thirty Years of Kentuckians for the Commonwealth and heard why Jack believes in KFTC.  


Hands Across Pine Mountain

The Skip Dippers

Twenty new and familiar faces turned out to a multi-chapter, Harlan and Letcher, gathering in Oven Fork on March 6. Harlan County chapter chair Roy Silver called the event "Hands Across Pine Mountain" in his excitement after the evening.


Chapter Feature:

DSC_0931"Many of us are working to create a better future for our children and grandchildren - and we've got lots of possibilities and real ideas about how to do that. We've got a bright future if we want it."

- Carl Shoupe, Benham, KY


Visions from Black Mountain coverVisions from Black Mountain

Residents of Benham, Lynch and Cumberland share their visions for the unique Tri-Cities area.

Regular Meetings:

We meet every other even month on the second Thursday at 6 p.m. We move our meeting locations around the county. Check the calendar!

Chapter Organizer:

131 N. Mill Street
London, KY 40741