Message from the vtTA
Making Vermont a Welcome Home for Remote Tech Workers

We’ve seen the stories of Vermont communities seeing an influx of newcomers to Vermont as a result of the state’s attractiveness during the coronavirus — including many working in tech.

Tech businesses have tended to lead in enabling remote work options (Microsoft is the latest company offering remote work on a permanent basis), and the vtTA has long promoted Vermont as an attractive home for tech workers who are not tied to a specific location. If you can work anywhere, then why not work in Vermont? For some, the pandemic has put a new focus on that possibility.

A recent survey of those who temporarily relocated to Vermont as a safer alternative has found that more than a third of the respondents said they were “likely” or “very likely” to stay in Vermont, and nearly half of the respondents said that their employers would allow them to telework from the state in the future. 

A majority of the newcomers also said they were living in rural areas of the state. One of the barriers to attracting telecommuters has been poor internet service in many areas of the state, in particular the most rural, and improving broadband is a goal that the vtTA has been advocating for over the past ten years. That’s why it’s positive to see money for improvements through the Federal COVID Relief Funds the state received. Since August, the Department of Public Service has provided grant awards of nearly $12 million to Internet Service Providers to expand coverage in underserved towns through its Connectivity Initiative. This effort targets homes lacking connections capable of 25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload (25/3), the federal minimum definition of broadband. This is progress, but more remains to be done.

Removing barriers for making Vermont a home for telecommuters is also one of the reasons the vtTA has opposed imposing the sales tax on software-as-a-service, or “cloud computing.” It does not help our efforts to attract workers to Vermont if we add a tax on the employees and their employers for the software tools that make remote work possible. Let’s not put up roadblocks that make it more difficult to choose Vermont compared to another state. And given that tech salaries are up to twice that of the average Vermont salary, the potential value of income taxes alone that the state receives from attracting telecommuters will likely be greater than that of the sales tax.

The vtTA will continue to support efforts to make Vermont the preferred home for tech jobs, tech companies and tech telecommuters. 

Two tech training offerings are coming up: Leading A Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe 5.0), Oct. 26-28, and SAFe Certified Scrum Master Certification Training, Nov. 2-4. You can apply a vtTA coupon code to get 10% off of the course fees for both.
You can also take advantage of a vtTA discount to participate in the online Venture Summit Virtual Connect conference, bringing together startups and investors.
Whether you’re a tech-focused startup or a large business, individual entrepreneur or remote worker, please consider joining as a member of the Vermont Technology Alliance.

Jeff Couture
Executive Director
Vermont Technology Alliance

Upcoming Events
REV2020: Power to Renew
(October 21 – December 9, 2020)
The Renewable Energy Vermont Conference, "REV2020: Power to Renew," will take place virtually with sessions throughout the fall. Organized by Renewable Energy Vermont, this annual forum brings together all those involved in the renewable energy sector.
Find more here.
Leading A Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe 5.0) Course
(October 26 – October 28, 2020)
Attendees will gain the knowledge necessary to lead a Lean-Agile enterprise by leveraging the Scaled Agile Framework® (SAFe®) and its underlying principles in this course presented by Desai Management Consultants and Conceptia. Take advantage of Vermont Technology Alliance discount code for this course.
Find more here.
SAFe Certified Scrum Master Certification Training
(November 2 - 4, 2020)
This Certified Scrum Master Certification training course, presented by Desai Management Consultants and Conceptia, includes three days of instructor-led training by a certified SAFe Program Consultant. Take advantage of Vermont Technology Alliance discount code for this course.
Read more here.
Venture Summit Virtual Connect
(November 17-19, 2020)
Meet, interact, and network online with more than 1,300 VCs, Corporate VCs, angel investors, industry execs and founders of venture-backed, emerging and early-stage companies at the Venture Summit Virtual Connect, November 17 -19.
Find more here.
Featured Member - DominionTech Computer Services
DominionTech Computer Services was founded by Brian Curtis in 2001. Originally, the company focused on repairing home computers and providing integration between PC and Mac users. Today, the company focuses on strategic IT planning and support for local Vermont businesses and municipalities. Dominion’s wide range of services include managed IT support and solutions, cyber-security planning and protection, cloud migrations, disaster recovery planning, VoIP, Microsoft 365 solutions, and more. This robust offering allows them to serve a variety of industries, including medical offices, local government, retail, and professional services.

DominionTech’s mission is to create proactive IT solutions for other local businesses to enable the businesses to focus on what matters most – their business. Dominion’s team of 20 employees has a combined 172 years of technical experience and multiple technical certifications, which has led them to be two-time winners of the Channel Futures MSP 501 award.

For more information, visit
Vermont Technology News
Vermont Startup Collective Launches, Offering Virtual Community for Entrepreneurs
(October 15, 2020)

The Vermont Center for Emerging Technologies has launched the Vermont Startup Collective, a new platform that offers entrepreneurs a dedicated virtual space for building community, advancing business ideas, and connecting with other startups, remote workers, small business owners, freelancers, investors, and mentors.

The platform is supported by more than 35 Vermont organizations, including the vtTA, and is free of charge and designed to be accessible and inclusive to all. The mobile/desktop platform features constructive guidance from advisors and mentors, thought-provoking conversations with peers, and critical tools and resources to start and scale.

Read more here.
McClure Foundation and Vermont Department of Labor Identify Vermont’s High-Pay, High-Demand Jobs
(October 14, 2020 – McClure Foundation)

The McClure Foundation and the Vermont Department of Labor released their updated list of Vermont’s most promising jobs for the next 10 years. The free, print and online resource lists 60 plus occupations — including many tech roles — expected to pay at least $22/hour and have at least 220 openings over the next decade. Using this data, the McClure Foundation has also identified seven “best bet” career training programs for Vermonters in 2021 that lead to a recognized credential and a great shot at attaining a promising job within 18 months.

Read more here.
More Than a Third of Recent COVID Transplants Surveyed are Likely to Make Vermont Home
(October 9, 2020)

More than a third of those who participated in a survey of people who relocated to Vermont this year in response to the coronavirus said they were “likely” or “very likely” to stay in Vermont, and nearly half of the respondents said that their employers would allow them to telework from the state in the future.

These are two of the key findings in the report, “Sheltering in Place: COVID-19 and Vermont’s Future,” based on the results of the survey by the Center for Research on Vermont, the Vermont Futures Project, and the University of Vermont’s Office of Engagement. 

The report, reviewing 226 responses collected this summer, concludes: “The survey signals an opportunity for the state, particularly in its effort to attract new residents to the region who can contribute to the social and economic vibrancy of Vermont.”

Read more here.
InSpace: A New Collaborative Virtual Education Platform Launches at Champlain
(October 1, 2020 – Champlain College)

InSpace announced the launch of a new virtual learning platform to improve and enhance online education. InSpace offers one-on-one conversations, group discussions, breakout rooms and presentations all in one virtual space, offering an online environment where students and teachers can interact and collaborate seamlessly, just as they do in real classrooms and labs. The platform was conceived by Narine Hall, a Champlain College data science and machine learning professor at Champlain College. Champlain is the first college to adopt the platform for classes this fall through a pilot program. In November, InSpace plans to offer the software to other colleges and universities as they prepare for the spring semester.

Read more here.
More than $4 Million in Grants Awarded to Expand Internet Service in Vermont
(October 7, 2020 – Vermont Department of Public Service)

The Department of Public Service has issued $4,055,920.55 in grant awards to Internet Service Providers to serve over 2,860 eligible locations with broadband connections in response to COVID-19. This represents the third round of grants of about $4 million each. The Department awarded grants to New England Wireless Co, Cloud Alliance, VTel Wireless, Waitsfield and Champlain Valley Telecom, Tilson, and Topsham Telephone. The Connectivity Initiative, which began in 2015, funds the expansion of broadband facilities in underserved towns. The awards were made through a competitive bidding process.

Read more here.
The Tech Group joins New Charter Technologies,
(October 5, 2020 – The Tech Group)

New Charter Technologies has announced a new partnership with South Burlington, Vermont-based managed services provider and vtTA member, The Tech Group. The Tech Group joins New Charter’s growing roster of North American managed service providers. Steve Loyer, Tech Group owner, will continue to lead the company. According to the announcement, by combining with New Charter, The Tech Group gains a level of security, buying power and next level tools, training and services only available to Enterprise-level companies.

Read more here.
Hark Develops Halloween Safety Website for CDC
(October 3, 2020 – Vermont Business Magazine)

Hark, a Vermont-based web and graphic design firm, announced it has partnered with the CDC, Harvard Global Health Institute, and the Halloween & Costume Association to help make Halloween both fun and safe this year during COVID-19. This year, navigating safety measures while making Halloween fun will prove a challenge. Hark has designed an intuitive website with this specific problem in mind (, which makes it easy to celebrate the holiday safely. 
Read more here.
Green River Unveils Contact-Tracing Software to Help Homeless in Pandemic
(October 1, 2020 – Vermont Public Radio)

Green River, a software design and development company based in Brattleboro, VT and a vtTA member, launched a suite of customizable contact-tracing tools on its open-source software platform, Open Path. The tools offer advanced features that allow health care providers, governments, hospitals, and insurance companies to track patients' movements, close contacts and medical records in real-time to aid in the fight against coronavirus. The new Open Path contact-tracing tools have already been tested and deployed by Boston Healthcare for the Homeless, with the goal of reducing infection rates among the 11,000 homeless it serves.

Read more here.

AMD Gives UVM $1 Million to Boost Computing Power for COVID-19 Research
(October 1, 2020 – UVM)

The microchip manufacturer AMD has made a $1 million gift to the University of Vermont to boost its high-performance computing capacity and enhance the university’s COVID-19 research efforts. UVM is among the first 21 schools the company has supported through its AMD HPC Fund for COVID-19 Research program, designed to accelerate COVID research at universities around the country. UVM Researchers will access AMD’s cloud-based, high-performance computing platform, a remote supercomputing facility used by researchers around the world, and will receive special training in the cloud-based system.

Read more here.

Vermont Technology Alliance Membership Update

The Vermont Technology Alliance works on behalf of its members and is able to carry out its mission through the support of its membership.

New members include Rural Innovation Strategies, Inc. and individual member Annie Davis
Renewing members include CSL Software Solutions, DominionTech Computer Services, eDOC Innovations, GBIC, Home Outside, QGenda, Reconciled It, UBS Financial Services, and VCET, and individual members John Boquet, Ron Lawrence, Roger Tubby, Stephen Waite, and Thomas Paron.
Not a vtTA member yet? Then why not join now?  Find more information here, or sign up at our new member registration page here. You can also contact us at
Useful Information & Links
Technical Assistance Available for Businesses

Free technical assistance is now available for businesses navigating the COVID-19 crisis through the Small Business Recovery Technical Assistance Program being managed through the state’s 12 regional development corporations. Help is available for:
  • Business operations, financial management, and grant writing
  • Digital strategies
  • Architecture and physical space design
  • Reconfiguring manufacturing equipment and processes and incorporating safety measures
  • Technology and software consulting
  • Legal, marketing, and other professional services.
Young Inventors STEM Education Program Expanding to Vermont
(October, 2020 – Press Release)

The Young Inventors’ Program, a STEM education offering that inspires students to explore science and technology while solving real-world problems, is being offered in Vermont as part of the program’s expansion across Northern New England. “For nearly 40 years, we have worked with New Hampshire schools and recently programs in Massachusetts,” explained Tina White, Director of the Young Inventors’ Program (YIP) at the Academy of Applied Science. “We have wanted to connect with Vermont students for the past year and are pleased to offer new options for them to use their creativity and ingenuity to become the next generation of entrepreneurs and innovators.”

Read more here.
Free College Courses Offered for Vermonters Impacted by Pandemic

The Vermont State Colleges System, through its four institutions, in coordination with the Department of Labor, is offering free classes and training – included tech-focused subjects – for Vermonters whose jobs have been affected by COVID-19. The Legislature approved using $2.3 million of federal money for the initiative. The funding can also be used for related services and supplies.

Find more here.
Comcast Announces RISE Program with Focus on BIPOC Businesses

Comcast has announced Comcast RISE, an initiative created to help strengthen and empower small businesses hard hit by COVID-19. The Comcast RISE program will help thousands of small businesses over the next three years, by offering grants, marketing consultations, media placements, commercial creative production services, and technology services.
The program will start in 2020 with an initial focus on Black-owned businesses. The next submission cycle will open up eligibility to all Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) business owners, those next hit hardest by the effects of the pandemic.

Find more here.

Upcoming Training Programs from VMEC

The Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center (VMEC) is offering a number of online training sessions for the fall:
  • Strengthening Supervisor-Employee Relationships with TWI Job Relations, October 26 - 30. Find more here.
  • ISO 9001:2015 - Internal Auditor Training, October 27 – 29. Find more here.
  • Accelerating Effective Employee Training with TWI Job Instruction, November 5 – 19. Find more here.
  • Innovation 101. November 9. Find more here.
  • Root Cause Analysis, December 1, 8 and 15. Find more here.
vtTA Career Center
Vermont Technology Alliance member companies are hiring, and when you visit the Career Center on the Vermont Technology Alliance website you can browse and search for these job openings and subscribe to updates. The Career Center has 100+ tech and non-tech jobs with Vermont Technology Alliance member businesses and organizations. Jobs available from vtTA members are listed at no charge in the Career Center as a member benefit.
For more, visit the Career Center.

The vtTA Thanks Its Member/Sponsors
Leadership Sponsors:

Partner Sponsors: