Joseph A. Main has officially been tabbed as mominee for assistant secretary for mine safety and health, Department of Labor.

Joseph A. (Joe) Main has vast mine health safety experience in the U.S. and is internationally recognized as an expert in mining health issues, according to a White House bio.

A Greene County Pennsylvania native, now residing in Spotsylvania, VA,. Main began working in coal mines in 1967 and quickly became an advocate for miners safety as a union safety committeeman as well as serving in various local union positions in the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA).

He was employed by the UMWA in 1974 as a Special Assistant to the International President, and joined the UMWA Safety Division in 1976, serving as Safety Inspector, Administrative Assistant, and Deputy Director. In 1982 he was appointed Administrator of the UMWA Occupational Health and Safety Department, a position he held for 22 years, managing the international health and safety program and staff.

Main has considerable hands-on experience inspecting and evaluating mining conditions, plans and systems. Main currently works as a self-employed mine safety consultant. His recent work has focused on international mine safety, research and analysis projects on preventing mining accidents, and development of training programs and facilities to prepare miners and emergency responders for mine emergencies.

He was born in Waynesburg, PA, and is a graduate of the National Mine Health and Safety Academy.