About Eastern Kentucky

Eastern Kentucky is a perfect representation of the “small town” American archetype. Nestled in the coal fields of central Appalachia, the region is building a new and innovative economy, based around anchor institutions such as the University of Pikeville, Pikeville Medical Center, Community Trust Bank, Shaping Our Appalachian Region, and others.

Community partners

  • Bit Source is a software development company located inside a building that previously functioned as a Coca Cola bottling facility — embedding the company within the town’s history. Bit Source’s mission is to create a tech sector in central Appalachia.The Bit Source team has worked hard to make connections in the existing tech marketplace to support the evolutions of a tech sector in the K-12, post-secondary, work-force development, and private sectors. Simply put, Bit Source develops fine software.Bit Source’s current projects include a prestigious National Science Foundation grant for Digital Promise Global to work with 10 K-8 schools in Pike and Floyd counties for computational thinking and computer science. These projects work on developing an ecosystem for local internships, an investment fund, and working toward an enterprise level of software development services in the greater marketplace.
  • Shaping Our Appalachian Region (SOAR) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that is a champion for Appalachia Kentucky. Through collaboration and innovation, SOAR has established a network of partners, representing individuals, organizations, and businesses, who unequivocally believe there is a future in Appalachia.
What RIN means to Eastern Kentucky

“Creating connections between rural communities and providing a means for us to work together to define our futures is a gift of empowerment.”

Payton May, Bit Source

Explore our Network

Today, these local leaders are focused on educating and training local residents in digital skills (especially those traditionally excluded from the tech industry), employing them in new economy jobs, and empowering them to launch startups that will drive a prosperous 21st-century economy. Diverse in geography, economic origin, and demographics, these communities represent the full spectrum of rural America.