Positively West Virginia
Positively West Virginia
Episode 147 - James Carnes - Iconic Air


James Carnes is the Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer at Iconic Air in Morgantown, WV. James started Iconic Air in December of 2018. Iconic Air is a West Virginia startup company pioneering a new way of leak detection monitoring and data reporting for the oil and gas industry. Iconic Air’s platform focuses on a transparent and automated process to ensure a frictionless transition as the world moves towards higher standards of climate change and ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) reporting metrics.

James was born and raised in Weirton, WV, and is a recent WVU Engineering Graduate. Before the inception of Iconic Air, James spent his time learning new technologies from his work at two major companies, Deloitte and Leidos. His unique skillset in business and software has helped Iconic Air bring innovative tech solutions to the energy industry.

James is part of several prestigious startup communities, including Forbes 30 Under 30, 2020 Vantage Ventures Resident, 2020 Austin Technology Incubator Resident and 2020 VentureWell E-Team Fellow.


  • 3:39 James, take a minute, fill in some gaps from that brief intro and give us a little behind the curtain look into your organization.
  • 5:48 How did Iconic Air get started?
  • 9:28 What is your 30 second pitch for Iconic Air?
  • 11:42 What is the thing you are most excited for about Iconic Air right now?
  • 13:40 What is the geographic market Iconic Air serves right now?
  • 14:18 How has the Vantage Ventures Organization helped Iconic Air?
  • 15:54 When did the company officially start?
  • 16:19 Do you have any employees yet?
  • 17:05 What has been your best business moment so far?
  • 18:31 When did you learn that you had made it on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list?
  • 19:11 What has been your worst business moment so far?
  • 20:44 What town did you grow up in?
  • 20:53 How does it feel to be a young person starting up a company in your home state (WV)?
  • 21:51 PWV Commercial Break
  • 22:22 What is the vision that you have for Iconic Air long term?
  • 23:17 How do you attract new customers?
  • 24:12 What is the biggest challenge you’re facing right now ?
  • 25:18 What is one piece of advice that you’d give to young entrepreneurs?
  • 26:30 What is one thing that you do every day that you think contributes to your success?
  • 26:58 What is one thing that you personally do every day that you think contributes to your success?
  • 27:31 What is one resource or piece of technology that you use in your company that you can’t live without?
  • 28:02 What is one book or podcast that you’d recommend to young entrepreneurs?
  • 29:16 Can you explain what a pitch deck is?
  • 30:25 Is there anything else you’d like our listeners to know about Iconic Air or your story?
  • 31:05 How can folks learn more about Iconic Air and maybe even get in contact with you?
  • 32:02 Outro

Iconic Air

amaRecommended Book:
The Founder’s Dilemmas: Anticipating and Avoiding the Pitfalls That Can Sink a Startup by Noam T. Wasserman

Recommended Podcast:
How I Built This with Guy Raz (From NPR)