39. West Virginia : Jim Justice
Much of Jim Justice’s attention focuses on giving the historic Greenbrier Resorts a facelift. After buying Greenbrier out of bankruptcy in 2009, Justice has transformed it into a 10,000-acre complex with PGA-quality golfing, an underground casino, and with any luck, ski slopes. The source of his original wealth, the coal business he inherited from his dad, has however caused headaches–and not just because coal prices have fallen.
Protests and lawsuits have piled up, and at one point in 2014, he faced over 200 pending regulatory violations, resulting in million dollar settlements and fines. Despite this, Justice is still a coal evangelist, and in 2015 announced he would spend $5 million to buy back some of the mining assets he sold to Mechel in 2009.