CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Former West Virginia Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Maloney has established a Morgantown-based conservative "think tank."The nonprofit organization will support "energy independence," healthy-lifestyle initiatives, and ethics and tax reforms, Maloney said in a prepared statement. "It is a nonpartisan think tank founded on the principles that our nation, and particularly West Virginia, were formed," he said.Maloney, who owns Cow Run Energy and Drill Leader, will talk about his "Center for a Brighter Future" at a 3 p.m. press conference Thursday at the University of Charleston.In a release, Maloney said the center would embrace principles that he outlined during his campaigns for governor during the 2011 and 2012 elections. Maloney lost both races to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin.
Maloney's organization will fund research and community outreach projects, he said."The mission of the center is to advance a legacy of prosperity for future generations based on the key principles of freedom and independence," Maloney said.The center's board includes: Maloney and his wife, Sharon; Morgantown businessman Patrick Esposito; Charleston lawyer Tom Graff; Huntington car dealer Matt Miller; former state Sen. Sarah Minear; former Jefferson County Commissioner Jim Ruland; and Charleston businessman John Smallridge.