In its heyday, Union Carbide attracted so many researchers to the Chemical Valley that Kanawha County was said to have more Ph.D.s per capita than anywhere else.
However, changes to the global market and Dow Chemical's acquisition of Carbide more than a dozen years ago meant the dismantling of the Tech Center.
A new entity, though, came into existence, the Mid-Atlantic Technology, Research & Innovation Center, seeking to fill the void.
MATRIC celebrated its 10th anniversary last month from the old Tech Center, which is now the West Virginia Regional Technology Park.
"We're driving for the next 10 years with our vision to be recognized as the strategic innovation partner of choice for our customers in our market where science and technology provide that competitive advantage," CEO Steve Hedrick told the Gazette's Caitlin Cook.
The organization said it has done business on six continents.
"That's the trick," he said. "You offer, 'This could be worked on anywhere in the world, but the know-how expertise associated with executing true innovation, real innovation - that requires that human element.'"
Carbide's demise cost the valley that element.
MATRIC is bringing that element back.
One project that holds promise is MATRIC subsidiary Aither Chemicals' catalytic ethane cracker. It could convert Marcellus shale gas into a cheaper-than-oil base product for plastics and other chemical industry uses.
Here is hoping for its success.
Prescription drug abuse is the No. 1 problem in West Virginia, but some state officials seem obsessed by making Sudafed and other cold and allergy remedies a prescription drug.
These remedies use pseudoephedrine, which is an ingredient in home-made crystal meth.
The Legislature instead adopted the industry's program that electronically tracks such purchases, which took effect in January.
They cannot depend on the reliability of statistics from law enforcement officials, as state and federal officials seem at odds over the manufacture of methamphetamine.
State officials now contend that in the nine months since, police have busted 369 meth labs, compared to 171 in 2011.