Press Releases

SOAR Launches Official Website

New site seeks citizen engagement, offers transparency, latest SOAR news

FRANKFORT, Ky. (June 12, 2014) – A website that supports the Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR) initiative – a public-private endeavor to improve the overall economy and quality of life for Kentucky’s Appalachia region— is now available for citizens across the Commonwealth to access the latest SOAR news, meeting information and more.   

The new website,, is a key component of SOAR’s commitment to engage the public and provide transparency in all its efforts.

It features several sections with information including a plan of work for 2014, a calendar of upcoming meetings and events, regional success stories and up-to-date news. Also included are descriptions of SOAR working groups, meeting notes and biographies of working group chairs and SOAR’s executive committee.

The site highlights many ways for citizens to stay connected with SOAR through social media and places for public input and comments. People will also be able to access SOAR’s ongoing work through archived reports, data, media, and presentations from meetings and events.

SOAR working groups will be meeting throughout the summer and the next SOAR joint committee meeting is tentatively scheduled for July.

Connect with SOAR on Facebook @ShapingOurAppalachianRegion and on Twitter @SOAR_EKY.  To contact the SOAR office, call 606-444-5127 or 606-437-5127.

About the SOAR Initiative

The SOAR initiative was launched by Governor Steve Beshear and Congressman Hal Rogers in late 2013, after a stunning downturn in the coal market exacerbated historic challenges in eastern Kentucky related to unemployment and poverty. More than 1,700 Kentuckians attended a one-day SOAR summit in Pikeville in December. SOAR is intended to help the region develop and put into action new locally-oriented strategies to attack persistent challenges.