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Commerce Lexington group to take ‘Regional Tour’ to Eastern Kentucky to learn more about SOAR initiative

In 2009, Commerce Lexington Inc. revived a long-ago tradition of visiting other areas of Kentucky with the intention of listening and learning from the leaders in each of the cities and locations visited.

This year’s Kentucky Regional Tour presented by East Kentucky Power Cooperative on October 24-25 will make a return to portions of Eastern Kentucky with an agenda and itinerary centered around the SOAR initiative.

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About 50 Central Kentucky leaders will explore topics of focus for the Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR) initiative – some of which include broadband expansion, workforce development, entrepreneurship in the digital economy, healthcare, higher education, innovation, tourism, and the cultivation of local leadership.  Along the way, we’ll hear from community leaders and elected officials in each community to broaden our knowledge of the region and better understand areas of potential collaboration.
The group is scheduled to visit a number of cities, including Williamsburg, Manchester, and Hazard on day one, with an overnight stay in Pikeville, and then Prestonsburg, Paintsville, and Salyersville on day two, before returning to Lexington. 

Stops will include the U.S. Department of State Kentucky Consular Center in Williamsburg, Eastern Kentucky University’s Manchester Campus, Appalachian Regional Healthcare in Hazard, Pikeville City Hall, BitSource in Pikeville, the Mountain Arts Center in Prestonsburg, Interapt at Big Sandy Community and Technical College in Paintsville, and Logan Corporation in Salyersville. The group will also hear from representatives of the University of Pikeville and Pikeville Medical Center, as well as more about the Mountain Parkway expansion project.
Commerce Lexington Inc. President and CEO, Bob Quick, said, “The Kentucky Regional Tour has become a very important listening and learning opportunity for Central Kentucky business and community leaders.  Sometimes we overlook how inter-connected the regions of Kentucky are and how each impacts the others.  This trip not only enables us to see first-hand what great things are happening in other communities, but also helps us understand their challenges and explore ways that we can collaborate with one another.”
The group is scheduled to depart from Lowe’s Hamburg (2300 Greg Lag Way) at 7:30 a.m. on Monday, October 24, returning to Lexington by about 5:00 p.m. on October 25.

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