Frank Betz
Executive Director/CEO
As the Rahall Transportation Institute (RTI) and Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) executive director/chief executive officer Frank Betz is responsible for the overall strategic and operational direction of the two organizations’ programs, staff, as well as the execution of their missions. He leads a dynamic team of business, academic and research professionals working to enhance economic development opportunities through basic and applied research, applications and technology solutions for public and private organizations. Currently, Frank serves as the assistant director of the Multimodal Transportation Infrastructure Consortium (MTIC), one of ten Tier I University Transportation Centers. Frank was formerly the chief operating officer of RTI. Prior to joining RTI, he performed a variety of functions working with some of the country’s top product and technology firms. Frank is the former vice president of finance & operations for a multi-state healthcare provider. He also served as a European strategic planning manager and software product manager for 3M France, where he worked cross-functionally with European business unit heads and product managers to streamline their operations. Adept at developing complex financial models, negotiating strategic alliances and delivering technology solutions, he was cofounder and chief information officer of a multinational dot-com internet technology company based in Silicon Valley. Frank started his career as a research coordinator at the University of Pennsylvania Center for Cognitive Therapy with publications in the field of psychology.

 Frank is fluent in French. He earned his Master’s in International Business from Pepperdine University, the Institut de Gestion Sociale and La Sorbonne in Paris, France in 1995. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania.
James Atkinson
Data Network Specialist 1
Lisa Christopher
Office Administrator, Senior
Justin Matthews
Senior Research Associate
Mr. Matthews is a Senior Research Associate for CBER. Prior to joining CBER, he was a Research Associate for the Nick J. Rahall Appalachian Transportation Institute. He has significant experience in public-private partnerships and innovative program delivery methods for highway infrastructure, as well as data collection, transportation rate studies, economic modeling and economic impact studies. Mr. Matthews has assisted in the writing of several grant proposals to Federal and state agencies to support economic development activities. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting from Marshall University and holds an M.B.A. in addition to a Master’s of Science in Industrial Employee Relations from Marshall University.
Christine Risch
Director of Resource and Energy Economics

Christine Risch is the Director of Resource and Energy Economics for the Center for Business and Economic Research at Marshall University. Her work for the Center focuses on regional industry and market analysis, and energy and environmental policy analysis, including economic impact analysis. Specific industries of focus are natural gas, coal, electricity, energy efficiency and renewable energy. Christine is a member of the Special Reclamation Advisory Council of the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection, where she represents the Actuary/Economist position on the Council.

Christine designed the West Virginia Stock Index, which tracks the top 25 publicly traded firms that do business in West Virginia. Prior to joining CBER she worked as a contractor for the Department of Energy in Washington, DC, in Maryland and ICF, Inc. in Virginia. Christine holds a master's degree in Energy Economics from the Pennsylvania State University and a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Marshall University.