A weekly email from the Appalachian Regional Commission
In the Region: A weekly snapshot of news, announcements, and other tidbits from the Appalachian Regional Commission
ARC NEWS ROUNDUP  |  August 1, 2019  |  VOLUME 4, ISSUE 29


ARC support will help pilot a rideshare program in Huntington, WV to bridge transportation gaps for those in recovery. 

Ride-to-recovery pilot in Huntington, West Virginia

One of the major themes raised during ARC’s recent Recovery-to-Work Listening Sessions is that lack of transportation can be an obstacle preventing people in recovery from getting the care they need to maintain recovery and obtain employment. Earlier this week, ARC Federal Co-Chairman Tim Thomas was in Huntington, West Virginia with Mayor Steve Williams; Bob Hansen, Director of the Office of Drug Control Policy, West Virginia Department of Health and Humans Resources; Brian Gallagher, Chairman, West Virginia’s Governor’s Advisory Council on Substance Abuse Disorders; and representatives from  the  Appalachian Transportation Institute (ATI), Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA), the Provider Response Organization for Addiction Care & Treatment (PROACT), and Marshall Health to begin developing a pilot project to address this specific challenge. Ideas under consideration include training treatment and recovery workers to be mobility advisors, enhancing and expanding available transportation options, subsidizing critical treatment and recovery trips, and engaging rideshare and volunteer driving services. As community leaders and local officials determine the best set of strategies, ARC is investing $215,000 to help seed the initiative. Discussions are already underway for possible partnerships with national transportation network companies like Lyft, local vehicle donation programs, and faith-based volunteer groups. In addition to driving sustainable solutions in Huntington, the initiative will also collect data and monitor the project to measure success in order to offer best practices to other communities facing similar challenges.
“Often times people will come into Huntington ...and will try to say that we are in the community that is the epicenter of the epidemic, or the epicenter of the problem,” Mayor Steve Williams said. “We like to say that we’re the epicenter of the solution, a ‘City of Solutions.’”

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Amelia Charles - a native Southwest Virginian, business owner and master's candidate - served as ARC's third Appalachian Teaching Project Summer Fellow.

Meet Amelia Charles, ARC’s 2019 ATP Summer Fellow

Amelia Charles hails from Hurley, Virginia and owns JonBoy’s Pizza, one of the only two restaurants in town. Amelia is also a master’s candidate in Appalachian Studies from East Tennessee State University (ETSU) and participated in the Appalachian Teaching Project (ATP) as a student in 2017. This week, Amelia is finishing up a 12 week stint in Washington, DC as ARC’s 2019 ATP Summer Fellow. During the Fellowship, Amelia spearheaded an impact evaluation study of selected ARC investments to assess their on-going performance. The work included conducting interviews, researching outcomes, and making site visits. In most cases, the analyzed projects were continuing to drive local economic development by outperforming on their goals for job and business creation, worker training, and leveraged private investment – even after the ARC grant period closed. As part of the evaluation, Amelia identified some commonalities possibly behind project sustainability including community partnerships, strategic planning, comprehensive program incubation and development, and a regional mindset.

Amelia is ARC’s third ATP Summer Fellow. “I wanted to do this Fellowship to see the scope of economic development across the Region,” Amelia said in reflecting on the experience. ATP Summer Fellows are chosen through a competitive application process open to alumnae of the Appalachian Teaching Project, an applied-research training program for students to design community based economic development initiatives across the Region. Since 2001, over 2,250 students from 22 colleges and universities across Appalachia have participated in ATP.  If you or someone you know is a former ATP student, sign up to register for the ATP Alumni Network.
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Early Bird Registration Closes Tomorrow!

Don't let your spot worm away! Early bird registration for ARC's Annual Summit, Appalachia Strong, closes Friday, August 2. 

Register now to catch a special rate and join hundreds of Appalachia's doers, thinkers and leaders in Asheville, North Carolina September 4-6.

Photographer/Videographer Needed

ARC is seeking a photographer/videographer to document the seven field-based sessions of the Appalachian Leadership Institute 2019-2020 program. The scope of work includes photography at working sessions, field visits, and other events; promotional video production; and professional headshot services. 

Read the RFP. Proposals are due at 5 pm ET on August 16, 2019.


Join Our Team!

ARC is recruiting for a number positions, including a Program Analyst [Infrastructure] and Office Coordinator. 

The Program Analyst [Infrastructure] will manage federal grants and provide technical assistance to communities and potential grant applicants on strategic infrastructure-related investments. 

The Office Coordinator is a dynamic role that includes supporting overall program operations, coordinating travel and schedules, and greeting ARC visitors and callers. 

For more information on this position, visit


ARC Awards Grant To Help Pave Road To Addiction Recovery, WOUB, Athens, Ohio

Pilot transportation program set to launch in October, Herald-Dispatch, Huntington, West Virginia
Asheville’s Waypoint Accelerator boosts local ‘outdoor-focused’ startupsWRAL Tech Wire, Raleigh, North Carolina
As Rural America Slips, Governors Look for Ways to HelpGoverning
With a Focus on Food Sovereignty, Rural Appalachian Ohio is ReboundingCivil Eats


Finance + Arts Webinar Series
Session One: Finance and the Arts, Tourism & Agribusiness
11:30 am - 12:45 pm
August 14

Appalachia Strong: An ARC Summit
Asheville, North Carolina
September 4-6

2019 National HBCU Week Conference
Washington, D.C.
September 8-10

Federal Student Aid Partner Summit - Appalachian Region
If interested, please email
Morehead, Kentucky
September 26

Alabama-Mississippi Rural Tourism Conference
Natchez, Mississippi
October 21-23
Map of the Appalachian Region

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian Region. ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the Region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.
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Appalachian Regional Commission
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Washington, DC 20009-1068