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Tri-Cities Entrepreneurs: Big ideas, willingness to take risks and can-do attitudes drive the next generation of job creators

Photo above: The participants in the Pitches and Pints event hosted by Start-Up Tri-Cities May 4: Luke Champouillon, Paul Champion, Michael Rice, Ben Collins, grand prize winner John Cowan, Kingsport Mayor John Clark, who presented the check to Cowan, Charles Kunene and James Eaton. Photo by Scott Robertson By Scott Robertson Aspiring entrepreneurs presented ideas, gathered feedback, and in some cases, took ...

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Ballad is back on the clock, but what has changed?

By Jeff Keeling Zero hour is back on the horizon for a state decision on Wellmont Health System and Mountain States Health Alliance’s proposal to merge. More than four months after an unexpected delay in the process, the Tennessee Department of Health (TDH) announced May 22 it had deemed the systems’ application for a “Certificate of Public Advantage” (COPA) complete. TDH announced on its initial deadline f ...

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Northeast State/RCAM to launch registered apprenticeship program

Kingsport’s Silgan Closures has partnered with Northeast State to launch a registered apprenticeship program that provides a paycheck and job training at the same time. Four Silgan employees will participate in the four-year program, receiving classroom instruction from the College’s Regional Center for Advanced Manufacturing (RCAM) and on-the-job training from Silgan.  At the end of the program, the worker ...

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Ramsey Agriculture Center opens for business

Photo above: Ron Ramsey poses in front of the newly opened center, May 20. A new meeting facility available to businesses and organizations began operations last month, bearing a familiar name. Before a crowd of nearly 300 people, the Ron Ramsey Agriculture Center near the Tri-Cities airport officially opened its doors May 20. “For many years, I served not only the people of Sullivan County, but also the ci ...

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Moret pitches a new vision for Southwest Virginia: “We must succeed where other states have failed.”

Stephen Moret outlines his economic agenda for Southwest Virginia at the SWVA Economic Forum, May 10. Photos by Tim Cox Photo/Graphics By Scott Robertson Stephen Moret brought a simple message to the SWVA Economic Forum at UVa-Wise May 10: Southwest Virginia no longer ends at Roanoke in the minds of the Commonwealth’s economic development partnership. Moret, who was named the VEDP’s CEO last November, outli ...

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Emory & Henry launches unique PA program

Photo above: Ryan Short receives his white coat at the Lincoln Theatre ceremony May 22. Photo courtesy Emory & Henry College By Scott Robertson Thirty first-year students donned white coats for the first time to inaugurate a one-of-a-kind program at Emory & Henry May 22. The Department of Physician Assistant Studies’ first class will center its studies at the Marion, Va., campus once owned by Mounta ...

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VCEDA: Sykes acquisition of Frontier Secure will not affect VCEDA loan payment

Photo above: Officials with Frontier Secure, the Wise County IDA and the Virginia Coalfields Economic Development Authority pose with a $5.6 million check last June in Wise. Photo by Tim Cox Photo/Graphics By Scott Robertson Sykes Enterprises acquisition of Frontier Secure, formerly a division of Frontier Communications, will not affect the repayment of the $5.6 million Virginia Coalfield Economic Developme ...

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Micronic Technologies creating a ripple effect in Southwest Virginia’s workforce

Photo above: The Micronic Technologies team The second in a series of articles by the United Way of Southwest Virginia Necessity is the mother of invention, and fewer needs are greater than the need for clean water. That need inspired Karen Sorber and her husband Kelly Rock to start Micronic Technologies in 2008. Sorber said, “In 2007, a year prior to marrying my husband, I was in Peru on a humanitarian vis ...

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