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George E. Nettels

Born: 1927, Pittsburg, Crawford County, Kansas. Married: Mary Joanne Myers.

George E. Nettels, Jr., was born to George and Matilda Nettels in Pittsburg, Kansas, in 1927. He attended Pittsburg schools before joining the U. S. Army. He served two years in the army then attended the University of Kansas. There he received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering in 1950. Nettels married Mary Joanne Myers of Great Bend; they have four children.

He returned to his hometown in 1957 and became the head Midwest Minerals, Inc., a firm specializing in limestone quarrying in Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma. He continues to serve the company as chairman of the board. 

In 1970 he was selected to run McNally Pittsburg, Inc., a company involved in the design, manufacturing, and construction of coal processing plants. It employs more than 1,000 people in Kansas, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Colorado.

Nettels served as chair of the Kansas Republican Committee from 1966 to 1968, chair of the Kansas Republican Convention in 1972 and 1976, as precinct committeeman, and on the Kansas Leadership Committee. He has served on numerous boards and professional organizations including the American Mining Congress as vice president of the manufacturers division, regional commander; the Kansas Cavalry; Bank IV Pittsburg; First Federal Savings and Loan of Pittsburg; Kansas City Power and Light; Kansans for the Right to Work; University of Kansas School of Engineering, Civil Engineering, Chancellor’s Club, and Endowment Association; Pittsburg State University’s Center for Business and Economic Development; Pittsburg Industrial Development Committee; Pittsburg NOW! Committee; and the National Coal Council Committee through the U.S. Department of Energy. He was a founding member of the Community Foundation of Southeast Kansas.

In 1980 the University of Kansas honored him with its Distinguished Service Award. He received the Fred Ellsworth Medallion from the University of Kansas Alumni Association in 1982, and KU’s Distinguished Engineering Service Award in 1985.

Entry: Nettels, George E.

Author: Kansas Historical Society

Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.

Date Created: December 2016

Date Modified: April 2019

The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.