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Early Bird Registration Ends July 20!  Register now!

Do you believe There is a Future in Appalachia

You are invited to be a part of the SOAR Summit 18 on August 30-31 at the East Kentucky Expo Center in Pikeville.  This year’s summit is a convening of organizations, businesses, and individuals who represent the best of Appalachia Kentucky.  Attendees come from all walks of life but are united in building the 21st Century Appalachia we envision.

This year’s Summit will feature inspiring keynote speakers who promote innovation and collaboration, economic and community development, and the alignment of the region’s work with the Blueprint for a 21st Century Appalachia, a visionary plan for Appalachia Kentucky that was created through the input of thousands of people from across the region.  A new addition this year is a pre-Summit track focusing on leadership and providing attendees interactive breakout sessions focused on either Health in Appalachia or Tech in Appalachia.  The expansion of the Summit to two days will also provide attendees more opportunities to network and visit the individuals, businesses, and organizations that are building solutions across Appalachia Kentucky.

Confirmed Speakers include:

Matt Bevin, Kentucky Governor

Harold "Hal" Rogers, Kentucky's 5th District US Representative

Tim Thomas, Federal Co-Chair, Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC)

Phillip Brown, Executive Director, Kentucky Communications Network Authority (KCNA) & KentuckyWired

Day 1: Pre-Summit Tracks

August 30th

Day one is a Pre-Summit leadership session focused on leadership development for individuals currently working or aspiring to work in Eastern Kentucky. The Pre-Summit workshop will begin with a leadership development session for everyone and then breakout into two sector tracks:

Tech in Appalachia

The Technology track will feature breakout sessions focused on deploying and leveraging technology. The Appalachia session will focus on the broad application of technology and its role in economic development across the region.  The Broadband session will showcase community-driven solutions to build broadband, with a special emphasis on last-mile deployment and implementation.

Health in Appalachia

The Healthcare track will feature breakout sessions focused on creating Healthy Communities. The first session will highlight the framework and established best practices in addressing the opioid epidemic from a community level. The second session will showcase new approaches in healthcare education designed to equip healthcare providers with the tools they need for healthcare service today.


Showcase your Innovation!

We're excited to once again showcase the great work happening across Appalachia!  We are restricting booth space to the floor only this year, so the process will be a bit more competitive than previous years.  The more interactive and engaging your booth is, the better!  Please don't plan to use the space simply for promoting your organization, use this space as an opportunity to inspire everyone in attendance about how your organization, business, program, and/or product is using innovation to impact the future of Appalachia.

  • Setup from 10 AM to noon on Thursday, August 30th.  All items will be secure inside of the Expo Center that evening and set up the day before ensures a smooth transition from the morning plenary and afternoon showcase session. As an added value to you, we will also have your booths open on the afternoon on Thursday, August 30th as a part of our pre-summit activities and the allow for more time for summit participants to learn more about your work.
  • Don't forget to register! Everyone that will be at your booth is also required to register for the event! If you plan on being inside the Expo Center on August 30th and 31st, be sure to register for both days.
  • If your application is accepted, there will be a nominal fee of $80-$100 (depending on the size of the table and other requirements, such as electricity, etc.). Register as a Blueprint Partner to receive special discounted rate to showcase, as well as discounted registration fees for the Summit.
  •  We will provide a table, two chairs, a white tablecloth, and black skirting. Table size will be either 8'x2' or 6'x2'

Day 2: The Summit

August 31st

This is a Summit designed to inspire, support, and connect you to resources and partners. We believe that the future of Appalachia is now, and we must come together to make lasting change throughout our communities. The SOAR Summit 18 will feature Governor Matt Bevin and Congressman Hal Rogers as we convene federal partners, funders, and support organizations while giving those in our region taking action access to these resources. 



Join the Movement

Be a part of the Future in Appalachia