- HSE & Human Resource Manager
Cornelius (Neal) Sharp III, was born and raised in Charleston, WV. He graduated from Stonewall Jackson High School in 1973, and attended Morris Harvey College where he majored in Biology.
In 1974 Neal was offered a position with Union Carbide Corporation, an international chemical manufacturing company. He began his career as a chemical operator and in 1986 was promoted to the company's Institute, WV Plant as an Emergency Services Supervisor. He developed the company's emergency response teams, and set a standard for the industry to follow.
Neal designed an Emergency Response Training Facility on the grounds of the Institute Plant, and managed the training program for Industrial / and municipal fire-fighting course and haz-mat certifications. He also served as one of the Corporate Incident Commanders for the companies National Incident Response Team. Neal managed large scale incidents in numerous locations across the United States in his 25 year career history. He obtained certification as a National Registered Emergency Medical Technician, as well as numerous certifications in industrial fire-fighting and OSHA hazardous materials response. Neal served as an adjunct instructor for the West Virginia University Fire Service Extension Office.
After leaving the chemical industry in 1998, Neal started his own company that specialized in providing OSHA compliance training in emergency management courses. "Sharp Safety Services" provided quality training and certification courses for West Virginia, as well as neighboring states. Clients included Industrial manufacturing companies, utility service companies, hazardous and environmental contracting companies, as well as municipal agencies.
On the morning of September 11, 2001, Neal was teaching a confined space certification course in Northern WV, when the news of the terrorist attacks were broadcast. Two days later he was contacted by the West Virginia Emergency Management Agency to discuss Homeland Security efforts in his home state. Neal had assisted local and state agencies in the past on chemical related incidents in his capacity as Emergency Services Director for Union Carbide. The Governor of WV appointed Neal as the State Homeland Security representative, where he would work with Federal, State, and local agencies to develop the WV Regional Response Program. Two years later, President Bush sent then Homeland Security Cabinet Secretary, Tom Ridge to WV. Secretary Ridge announced that WV had developed a homeland security program that was "a model for the rest of the country to follow". Neal held the director position until Governor Wise term expired in 2005. Neal moved to North Carolina to begin a long desired dream of becoming a real estate broker in the summer of 2005. He worked for REMAX in Cary, NC for three years, before deciding to move to the beautiful Smoky Mountains in Gatlinburg, TN. His adventurous career was not over yet, though. In 2010 he was asked to be the Safety / Health / and Environmental Manager for a Department of Defense Contractor in IRAQ. Neal spent 15 months overseeing the health & safety Programs for the Western Bases in IRAQ, working side by side with the men and women in United States Military. Having never served in the military, this was his way of serving his country and providing a safe environment for the soldiers to carry out their duties.
Being too energetic to just outright retire, he worked in the Safety & Security Department for Westgate Resorts in Gatlinburg, TN. Neal obtained his armed security officer license in 2011.
In August, 2012 Neal was offered a position as HSE & Human Resource Manager for an oil / gas construction company in WV. He is now working back in his former home state. From the WV Hills to the Great Smoky Mountains, Neal has lived an adventurous life and achieved much recognition for his efforts.
Neal has three wonderful sons, and a beautiful daughter. He is blessed with 5 beautiful grandchildren who he adores. Neal hikes the trails in the beautiful mountains of TN, and even finds time to volunteer for the National Park Service as a Volunteer Ranger, monitoring the busy trails in the Smoky Mountain National Park. Neal enjoys traveling and visiting family.
Neal is writing a book about his experience in war-torn IRAQ and the Middle East.