Major General (Retired) Vinny Boles to keynote 2018 SOAR Summit


Major General (Retired) Vinny Boles will be the keynote speaker for the 2018 Shaping Our Appalachian Region, Inc. (SOAR) Summit.  Appalachian Wireless is presenting the keynote speaker for the 2018 SOAR Summit.

Boles, the author of “4-3-2-1… What America’s Sons and Daughters Taught Me on the Road from 2nd Lieutenant to 2 Star General,” spent 33 years in the United States Army, including command posts at every possible level and a number of combat deployments.

“Leadership is one of our core values at SOAR, and it is fitting that we have someone like Major General Boles speaking to us because our partners are on the frontlines of so many issues facing our region, ” said Jared Arnett, executive director of SOAR. “The future that we envision can only happen when bring leadership to the forefront of our work.  We want to identify, inspire, cultivate, and empower leaders and emerging leaders with the skills to make substantial investments in their communities, their organizations, and their businesses.”

This year, the SOAR Summit will include a special pre-Summit track on leadership.  The pre-Summit session will be divided into two tracks: Health in Appalachia and Technology in Appalachia.

“We added the pre-Summit track as a way to provide some professional development and sharing of best practices for those who are working to better their communities,” added Arnett. “We specifically wanted to target technology and health because it identifies one of our greatest opportunities (technology) and one of our greatest challenges (health).  A common component to addressing any challenge or opportunity is our capacity to be leaders.”

Boles will provide the keynote presentation at the SOAR Summit general session on Friday, August 31.  Boles will share his experience in leadership ranging from the end of the Cold War to the response and deployment of troops to Iraq and Afghanistan following the 9-11 attacks.

Registration is open for the 2018 SOAR Summit at  For more information, call (606) 766-1160 or email