Appalachian Chained first went online on February 13, 2017, as a personal blog featuring the reflections of Rod Mullins, a Dickenson County, VA native. The blog has since evolved over time, as a writer’s portal, reflecting on life and issues in Appalachia, central Appalachia and Southwest Virginia.
Roderick Mullins is a freelance digital multimedia journalist born and raised in Appalachia, writer, and editor of “Appalachian Chained”.
He began his career in journalism and mass media working in radio after graduating high school and through his college years at Clinch Valley College (now The University of Virginia’s College at Wise) and as a reporter for The Cumberland Times newspaper in his hometown of Clintwood, VA. Mullins later moved to feature writing for “The Dickenson Star” while continuing his work in radio broadcasting. After graduating from UVa-Wise in 1988 with a B.A. in Communications, Mullins became the program director/news director/on-air morning show host for AM/FM station, WNVA in Norton, VA.
In the early 1990’s, Mullins was the Sports Information Director at UVa-Wise and served as the radio “Voice of the Highland Cavaliers” for football and basketball for seven seasons in addition to publicizing Cavalier athletics.
Mullins also covered NASCAR Winston Cup Racing for select media outlets, providing photos, interviews, and stories. In 1995, Mullins transitioned to public education where he has worked as a high school English, literature, and creative writing teacher and now serves as a school program coordinator in addition to serving as a mentor for the robotics team.
But a love for telling a story, whether through the written word, spoken or through audio, video or photography has returned him to what he loves, digital multimedia journalism.
In 2016, Mullins returned to writing covering local government and sports for The Dickenson Star and The Coalfield Progress newspapers, and in 2017, began providing coverage of NASCAR, NHRA and the Short Track U.S. Nationals from Bristol for The Augusta Free Press online. He is presently the co-host of the podcast, “Stories: A History of Appalachia“, and is a contributor to “Street Knowledge with Chris Graham” podcasts.
Mullins lives in Wise, VA, with his wife, Kimberly, a middle school mathematics teacher and one son, Andrew.
In his available time, Mullins enjoys genealogy, Appalachian history, podcasting, audio/video editing, graphic design and also pursues personal storytelling and informational presentations about historical topics from Appalachia.