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IBM, Intuit Executives to Deliver Remarks During WV Coding & Cyber Summit Oct. 12 In South Charleston

Obed D. Louissaint, Vice President of Human Resources, IBM Cognitive Solutions, Digital & Research, will participate in a Keynote Q&A presentation entitled “West Virginia’s Path to the New Collar Economy” at the West Virginia Coding & Cyber Summit on October 12 in South Charleston.

Obed D. Louissaint, Vice President of Human Resources, IBM Cognitive Solutions, Digital & Research

Bernie McKay, Chief Policy Officer for Intuit Corporation, will offer opening remarks.  The Intuit Financial Freedom Foundation is a co-sponsor of the event.

The daylong West Virginia Coding & Cyber Summit aims to accelerate efforts underway to make software coding and cyber skills training widely available across the state.  U.S. Senators Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito are event co-hosts and are uniquely focused on growing 21st century skill sets while helping facilitate job opportunities in the technology sector.

“As West Virginia continues working to grow and diversify our economy, the tech industry provides so many opportunities for our students, workers, and job creators,” Senator Capito said.  “The West Virginia Coding & Cyber Summit will help highlight those opportunities and show West Virginians how to pursue them. I’m excited to be part of this important event that will help West Virginians gain critical skills to succeed in the workforce and grow the tech economy in our state.”

Senator Manchin said, “It’s no secret that West Virginians are hard-working. But as our economy evolves, our workforce is also proving that we’re innovative and we have the technical skills for the jobs of the future.  With dedicated groups like TechConnect and new opportunities like those being offered by Mined Minds, which is retraining coal miners for software coding jobs, West Virginia isn’t just looking around the corner – we’re forging ahead. I applaud everyone committed to making this event possible, and to making West Virginia even stronger.”

With hundreds of thousands of software coding and cyber jobs unfilled in the U.S., West Virginia has tremendous opportunity to grow its tech economy through preparing workers for these positions.  TechConnect developed the event to highlight the possibilities and to discuss plans for preparing our workforce.

Bernie McKay, Chief Policy Officer for Intuit Corporation

“U.S. Senators Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito, joined by tech industry leaders from around the state and nation, will share their views on how West Virginia’s workforce can play a greater role in the high-tech economy,” said Anne Barth, executive director of TechConnect West Virginia.  “Growing the tech economy in our state is a pathway to economic progress and this event will highlight the opportunities that exist for our workforce to become a part of this fast growing sector.”

The agenda can be accessed online by clicking here.  Moderators and presenters include:

  • Bernie McKay, Chief Policy Officer, Intuit
  • Obed D. Louissaint, Vice President of Human Resources,
    IBM Cognitive Solutions, Digital and Research
  • U.S. Senator Joe Manchin
  • U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito
  • H. Wood Thrasher, Secretary, WV Department of Commerce
  • Kathy D’Antoni, Associate State Superintendent, WV Department of Education
  • Paul Hill, Chancellor, WV Higher Education Policy Commission
  • Casey Sacks, Vice Chancellor, WV Community & Technical College System
  • Brian Stolarik, Program Manager, Cyber & Intelligence Mission Solutions, Northrop Grumman Mission Systems
  • Lawrence Malone, WV National Guard
  • Timi Hadra, Senior State Executive, IBM
  • Gayle Manchin, Secretary, WV Dept. of the Education & the Arts
  • Amanda Laucher, Co-Founder, Mined Minds
  • Lee Farabaugh, Co-Founder & COO, Core10
  • Chuck Toussieng, Founding Board Member, Richwood Scientific, Inc.
  • Patrick Farrell, Co-Founder, CentralApp

The event will take place from 8:30am – 3pm on Thursday, October 12 at the BridgeValley Advanced Technology Center in South Charleston. Registration information and event details can be found at, or by clicking here. Early-bird registration ends Oct. 6.

Event sponsors include: Intuit Financial Freedom Foundation, BridgeValley Community & Technical College; West Virginia University; Marshall University, IBM; Science & Research Division, WV Higher Education Policy Commission; Steptoe & Johnson, PLLC; Allegheny Science & Technology; Northrop Grumman Corporation; and Core10.

For additional information, contact Anne Barth at or call (304) 444.2918.

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