West Virginia native Jim Justice, owner of the Greenbrier resort, spa and casino in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va. The hotel lost its illustrious fifth star from Mobile Travel Guide (now run by Forbes) in 2000, and Justice aims to get it back.

West Virginia native Jim Justice, owner of the Greenbrier resort, spa and casino in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va. The hotel lost its illustrious fifth star from Mobile Travel Guide (now run by Forbes) in 2000, and Justice aims to get it back.

Linda Davidson-The Washington Post

Justice makes his money from corn, timber and coal interests. His net worth is "somewhat more than a billion dollars," he says. "And that would be a very conservative number." He coaches the Greenbrier East High School girls' basketball team as a release for his competitive streak.

Justice makes his money from corn, timber and coal interests. His net worth is "somewhat more than a billion dollars," he says. "And that would be a very conservative number." He coaches the Greenbrier East High School girls' basketball team as a release for his competitive streak.

Linda Davidson-The Washington Post

Justice with his Greenbrier East team. Principal Jeff Bryant says Justice applied by saying " 'I love to coach, and I have a proven record.' He made no mention of his business career. He was the best candidate, so we hired him."

Justice with his Greenbrier East team. Principal Jeff Bryant says Justice applied by saying " 'I love to coach, and I have a proven record.' He made no mention of his business career. He was the best candidate, so we hired him."

Linda Davidson-The Washington Post

Justice bought the high school a new court floor, which bears his signature.

Justice bought the high school a new court floor, which bears his signature.

Linda Davidson-The Washington Post

Justice on the sidelines. He started coaching when his daughter, Jill, attended the school, and he stayed on after she graduated. His kids, now 30 and 25, often come to his home basketball games.

Justice on the sidelines. He started coaching when his daughter, Jill, attended the school, and he stayed on after she graduated. His kids, now 30 and 25, often come to his home basketball games.

Linda Davidson-The Washington Post

Justice and wife Cathy live in a one-story ranch house in Lewisburg, W.Va. It's not the most expensive house on the block, real estate records show.

Justice and wife Cathy live in a one-story ranch house in Lewisburg, W.Va. It's not the most expensive house on the block, real estate records show.

Linda Davidson-The Washington Post

The Justices with Boston terriers Lilly, Lucy and Molly. "We live in a modest house, we go to basketball games. I'm nearly 60 years old. We're not going to change now," he says.

The Justices with Boston terriers Lilly, Lucy and Molly. "We live in a modest house, we go to basketball games. I'm nearly 60 years old. We're not going to change now," he says.

Linda Davidson-The Washington Post

Dressed as Santa Claus, Justice greets Adam Tingler, 6, at the Liberty Chapel in Crumpler, W.Va.

Dressed as Santa Claus, Justice greets Adam Tingler, 6, at the Liberty Chapel in Crumpler, W.Va.

Linda Davidson-The Washington Post

He makes the holiday visit to Crumpler in his helicopter each year, delivering presents to impoverished children.

He makes the holiday visit to Crumpler in his helicopter each year, delivering presents to impoverished children.

Linda Davidson-The Washington Post

Justice began trying to turn the Greenbrier around just six days after he took over. He hired back 650 employees who had been laid off and offered a 10 percent raise if the hotel regained its fifth star.  "Even if we had 14 doormen and one customer, we had to have the energy back," he says.

Justice began trying to turn the Greenbrier around just six days after he took over. He hired back 650 employees who had been laid off and offered a 10 percent raise if the hotel regained its fifth star. "Even if we had 14 doormen and one customer, we had to have the energy back," he says.

Bill O'Leary-The Washington Post

Justice's office at the resort is an unmarked door beside a laundry closet. In November, the Forbes Travel Guide released its list of five-star hotels. The Greenbrier wasn't on it. For the 11th straight year, it was listed as a four-star hotel. Justice says the news was like "a cannonball to the stomach."

Justice's office at the resort is an unmarked door beside a laundry closet. In November, the Forbes Travel Guide released its list of five-star hotels. The Greenbrier wasn't on it. For the 11th straight year, it was listed as a four-star hotel. Justice says the news was like "a cannonball to the stomach."

Bill O'Leary-The Washington Post

However, since Justice bought the Greenbrier in 2009, the hotel has returned to near-profitability, with record occupancy rates, a new casino and a PGA golf tournament.

However, since Justice bought the Greenbrier in 2009, the hotel has returned to near-profitability, with record occupancy rates, a new casino and a PGA golf tournament.

Bill O'Leary-The Washington Post

Justice, above, in Fizzy's Land of Oz, the Greenbrier's toy store named for his teenage impression of the resort.

Justice, above, in Fizzy's Land of Oz, the Greenbrier's toy store named for his teenage impression of the resort.

Bill O'Leary-The Washington Post