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The Shenandoah Valley Connection top 
August 30, 2 019
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Annual SVTC Program Activities Survey
BRCC forms Partnerships to Offer Cybersecurity Jobs to Graduates
Governor Northam Announces Women in Innovation Conference
CRCF FY2020 Solicitation: Take a Sneak Peek at the Upcoming Round
JMU College of Integrated Science & Engineering / College of Science & Math Open House (8/30)
For Those Interested in Accelerators & Maker Spaces Outside of the Shen. Valley: RAMP Demo Day (9/9)
SVTC Luncheon | Building Useful Conversational Software (9/12)
SVTC Fall Tech Mixer (9/24)
Valley TechCon.19 | Early Bird Registration OPEN (9/25)
SVTC Luncheon: WTF is Strategy and Why Should You Care? (10/24)
Valley Women in Tech Lunch (10/29)
Innovate | Shenandoah: Strategic Doing Day (10/30)
Welcome Back Level III Member: City of Harrisonburg
Welcome Back Level II Member: Shentel (Shenandoah Communications)
Welcome Back Level I Member: Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative
Shenandoah Valley Open Tech Jobs
Annual SVTC Program Activities Survey
*What topics make your heart skip a beat?* 
Take our super-short survey.
Suggest topics for events and luncheons,
or interesting locations you would like to visit.

Suggest topics for events and luncheons. Is there an organization, program, team, or business location you'd like to hear from or visit? Use the link below to take a super short survey to let us know which topics you're interested in. 

We're thinking ...... (Follow the link below and click on the ones you like) 

  • Augmented and virtual reality (eg. uses in education and training, risks of AR/VR, utilization in phone apps)
  • Cryptocurrencies (eg. future of cryptocurrency, cryptocurrency and security, Facebook's Libra)
  • Data privacy (eg. social media privacy, transparency among data controllers, selling of consumer data)
  • Job automation (eg. benefits/risks, how it's reshaping the workforce)
  • Artificial intelligence (eg. in-depth discussion on machine learning, robotic process automation, application in industry)
  • Drones (eg. ethics/security, integration and current uses, future application)
  • Technology's role in workplace safety (e.g. cataloguing systems, digital training, wearable tech)
  • Cybersecurity (eg. protecting against cyberattacks, role of AI in cybersecurity, improving employee implementation of security protocols)
  • Autonomous vehicles (eg. safety/dangers, local implementation, technology/software behind self-driving cars)
  • Game development (e.g. how to get started in it, game design, technologies utilized in game development)
  • eSports (e.g. overview of the industry, role in education)
  • <and others>
To know what topics we covered in the past, take a look: 

BRCC forms Partnerships to 
Offer Cybersecurity Jobs to Graduates

Six graduates of Blue Ridge Community College's Go Virginia cybersecurity training program have obtained positions with Tiber Creek Consulting, which is opening a new office in Waynesboro, VA, in the same building as BRCC's Online Outpost. In addition, more students will participate in paid internships with Tiber Creek this fall.
BRCC students will be performing cybersecurity assessments for federal contractors in Virginia as part of a $1.4 million Department of Defense grant awarded to GENEDGE Alliance. The funding covers a variety of services to assist Defense Department suppliers in putting cybersecurity risk management systems in place, to comply with the National Institute of Standards and Technology for cybersecurity.
According to a release from Governor Ralph Northam's office, "Cyber threats are real and growing," said Dr. Wayne Stilwell, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of GENEDGE. "This grant will allow us to increase the cyber security capabilities for many small defense companies that are essential national security assets in critical supply chains."
The BRCC students received reduced-cost training from a separate GO Virginia Cyber Security grant awarded to BRCC in 2018.  The goal of the grant is to train and employ 50 Tier I Cyber Security Analysts by July 2020, and to partner with a local company to offer in-demand, excellent-paying employment opportunities.  
The Go Virginia training program includes a security review course, CompTIA Security+ Exam, Cybrary online training, and on-the-job training, and takes approximately three months to complete.
Prospective students may contact Dan OBrien, GO Virginia Cyber Security Program Manager and Instructor, at (540) 453-2254 or , or visit   for more information.

Governor Northam Announces Women in Innovation Conference

August 21, 2019 (Richmond, VA)

Governor Ralph Northam today announced the Commonwealth's first annual Women in Innovation (WIN) conference to celebrate the success of women innovators and honor their achievements. The event, presented by the Virginia Information Technologies Agency (VITA) Innovation Program, will take place September 12 in Richmond.

"Trailblazing women have paved the way for progress throughout Virginia's history and continue to help define our Commonwealth's innovative spirit,"  said Governor Northam. "This event will bring together successful women leaders and entrepreneurs from across the public and private sectors to share their stories, learn from each other, and continue to drive positive change in their communities and throughout Virginia."

At this first of its kind event for Virginia state government, attendees will hear about the journeys of women leaders in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Speakers and panelists will discuss how they have guided their work and communities with impactful leadership, uplifting their peers and investing in change. The event will offer participants significant networking opportunities, a platform to collaborate on new ideas, and inspiration to continue making a difference in their communities.
"This conference provides a platform for influential women leaders and entrepreneurs to showcase achievements in their respective fields and to identify opportunities for collaboration,"  said Secretary of Administration Keyanna Conner.

The event will focus on exciting topics including innovation in technology, energy, science and transportation. Keynote speaker, Ingrid Harb, is a global advocate from Mexico who fought through the cultural mold to create a career for herself and hundreds of young women around the world.
The event will be held at the historic Bolling Haxall House in Richmond. The registration fee is $50, and additional event information, including the program schedule, can be found on the  Women in Innovation website.

CRCF FY2020 Solicitation:
Take a Sneak Peek at the Upcoming Round
Are you commercializing an early-stage, high-potential technology in Virginia?
CRCF may be for you!

CIT is excited to preview the Commonwealth Research Commercialization Fund (CRCF) FY2020 solicitation. Approximately $2.5 million is available to award to Virginia's private sector, higher education, federal research facilities, and other research organizations through five programs: Commercialization, SBIR Matching Funds, STTR Matching Funds, Matching Funds, and Eminent Researcher Recruitment. Award caps range from $75,000 to $250,000.

CRCF accelerates innovation and drives economic growth in Virginia by advancing solutions to important state, national, and global problems through technology research, development, and commercialization.

CRCF will invite technology development projects in five targeted industries:
  • Clean energy
  • Cyber security
  • Data analytics
  • Life sciences
  • Unmanned systems
Visit  for high-level program information, including eligibility criteria for organizations and qualified technologies, key submission dates, and upcoming briefings. Be on the lookout for information on the Letter of Intent (LOI) in late August, followed by the RFP in late September. Program-specific guidelines and other application resources, including webinars will be available with the RFP. A curated list of  FAQs  is available now. The CRCF team can be reached at and will begin fielding questions about the round with the release of LOI details.

JMU College of Integrated Science & Engineering/
College of Science & Mathematics Open House (8/30)

August 30, 2019 | 2 pm - 4 pm
iSAT/CS and En/Geo Buildings, JMU, Harrisonburg
Please park in the D-2 lot -- no parking passes needed.

JMU's East Campus has recently completed 3 summers of renovation and they are having an  Open   House  to show off the new facilities for Computer Science, Engineering, Geology and Environmental Science and the School of Integrated Sciences. Come see state-of-the-art classrooms and labs and interact with students and faculty.  The new spaces include Maker Spaces and Fabrications labs, the Madison Academic Brewery, collaborative spaces for Computer Science, Environmental Science and Geology labs and much more.

For those interested in checking on the accelerators and maker spaces outside of the Shen. Valley region, take a trip to Roanoke: RAMP Demo Day (9/9)
September 9, 2019 | 5:00 pm
Whitman Hall Auditorium, VWCC, Roanoke
Three years ago, the Roanoke-Blacksburg region made a commitment to support technology startups in such a way as to accelerate their growth. Your encouragement and contributions have made it possible.

The journey for these six companies is just getting started, but this milestone is significant.

Join us for our third annual Demo Day on Monday, September 9th. This event is designed to showcase the 2019 RAMP cohort companies.

September 12, 2019 | 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
Wood Grill Buffet, Harrisonburg

It's easy to build a bot; it's hard to build a useful bot. Chatbots have been circulating the buzzword bins for the last two years, and a day doesn't go by where you don't hear about some new chatbot being launched to support customers or processes. Now, look at your phone. How many chatbots are you using? Go ahead. I'll wait. With chatbots, you can easily build a novelty, but without a clear plan and intuitive design, you might build something that works, but that nobody wants to use. For this luncheon, we'll discuss what it takes to build a useful and compelling chatbot, as well as how to design and prototype bots before you build them. We will then go over a "useful" chatbot application, and how it was built from end-to-end

About the Speaker
Michael Szul has spent two decades in software engineering in industries as diverse as insurance, energy, travel, and higher education, including consulting with companies such as AIG and Conde Naste. He has worked in both application and product development, as well as framework creation, code generation, API building, and machine learning. Szul is a speaker, blogger, podcaster, Microsoft MVP in AI and Developer Technologies, and author of Building Chatbots in TypeScript with the Microsoft Bot Framework. Currently, he is the manager of undergraduate medical education applications for the  University of Virginia's Health System.

Thank you luncheon sponsors:

September 24, 2019 | 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm
Beyond Restaurant, Harrisonburg

Join the Shenandoah Valley Technology Council on September 24th for our annual Fall Tech Mixer. Hosted by the SVTC's Board of Directors, this is our fall networking event.

Come and find out what the SVTC is doing as an organization, and what our members are doing individually. This is our second biggest event of the year (only Tech Nite is bigger). This is where the growing technology community goes in the fall to catch up. SVTC members are corporate leaders, entrepreneurs, educators, coders, programmers and more. Membership is not required to participate in the Fall Tech Mixer nor many SVTC events. Feel free to invite a co-worker, customer, friend or spouse (please register each).

Come out and join current and potential members as they mingle and network. Appetizers are 'on us'! Drinks are Dutch treat.

ValleyTechCon19 | Early Bird Registration (9/25)
September 25, 2019 | 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
Hotel Madison & Shenandoah Valley Conference Center

** Early Bird Tickets (ends 8/31): $100 (+ $7.72 fee)  **
Regular Admission: $125 (+ $9.24 fee)
Student Rate: $50 (+4.67 fee)

Now in its second year, Valley TechCon brings together technology enthusiasts, practitioners, researchers, and business leaders to facilitate idea sharing, collaboration, and innovation. This year there will be three tracks to choose from for the breakout sessions: Technical Topics for Practitioners, The Business Impact of Technology, and Growing Your Technology Business. Within each track,  sessions will cover a broad spectrum of topics. The goal is to inspire new ideas, improve business efficiency with emerging technologies, springboard new ventures, and expand networking opportunities.

Check out all that Valley TechCon.19 has to offer this year!
Ticket Includes
  • Breakfast, morning snack, lunch.
  • 14 breakout sessions.
  • 3 featured speaker sessions.
  • Post-event networking event at Pale Fire Brewing Company (shuttle and first drink included)*.

Are there ID or minimum age requirements to enter the event?
Individuals of all ages are encouraged to attend, from high school age upwards, through college years, those in a professional career, and those looking to keep up to date in retirement.

What are my transportation/parking options for getting to and from the event?
Hotel Madison & Shenandoah Valley Conference Center is conveniently located close to exit 245 on Interstate 81 at 710 S. Main St., Harrisonburg VA, 22801.  Directions. Once you arrive, you will find a multi-storey parking deck towards the rear of the hotel. The entrance is located on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. (Historical Cantrell Ave.). Valet parking is also available.

How can I contact the organizer with any questions?
Contact via email

What's the refund policy?
Refunds can be requested up until 7 days before the event.

*After conference networking session occurs 3:30-5:30 PM at Pale Fire Brewery in downtown Harrisonburg; one beer ticket per non-student conference attendee

October 24, 2019 | 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
Wood Grill Buffet, Harrisonburg 

This presentation will focus on understanding the 3 different types of strategic disciplines.  What are their differences and how businesses often gravitate to one not realizing the others are blind spots?  How to build a strategy that leverages all 3 and how to do that to build a better organization.  An ideal topic for business leaders looking to take their business to the next level or understand how to pivot from stagnate/declining revenue.

About the Speaker
David Deaton, founder of Deaton Group, LLC, has over two decades of experience transforming organizations through strategic planning, market research, and effective execution.  David has partnered with organizations worldwide ranging from startups and nonprofits to global businesses to improve growth, manage change and transformation, and develop strong strategic foundations to build and sustain their success.  As the former Director of Strategy and Market Research for the CFA Institute Asia Pacific region, David has extensive experience in both qualitative and quantitative market analysis. He then went on to become Global Strategic Planning Director where he developed organizational strategy and departmental alignment, guided new teams and projects through effective launches, helped teams plan for implementation, and provided group facilitation for departmental strategic planning.  We know that organizations can overcome their toughest obstacles and reach new levels of success through sound strategy. We're here to make that happen.

Register for October 24, 2019 SVTC Luncheon

October 29, 2019 | 11:45 am - 1:00 pm
Wood Grill Buffet, Harrisonburg

Gathering women "in tech" on October 29 for an informal gathering from around the Valley to connect, network, and share ideas. This is a first meeting to get acquainted  - let's see what, if anything, we want to do. From students to professionals, we welcome all those who identify as women or girls interested in or associated with technology.

Take a look at an organization in Charlottesville, Charlottesville Women in Tech (, we are keeping them in mind as we start a conversation among women who are in tech, in the Valley. As always, that's anywhere on the range from tech user to tech creator. Elaine Cheng, Chief Information Officer, Shentel and Nicky Swayne, CEO, Shen. Valley Technology Council will facilitate the meeting.

Please pre-register to attend so that we can bring pre-printed nametags for attendees.

Teams meet October 30, 2019 | 9am - 5pm
Innovate | Shenandoah in an initiative sponsored by SCCF and the VA Department of Housing and Community Development. They are hosting a Strategic Doing Day. What is Strategic Doing? Strategic Doing is a framework developed by Purdue University that helps loosely connected groups, collaborate quickly and effectively. Communities within the Shenandoah Valley are invited to build teams that will work through the Strategic Doing Process to develop projects that highlight entrepreneurship and economic vibrancy in your community. 

Want to be a part of a team? Complete the form in the link below and you will get you connected to the appropriate organizer within your region. Please note, some teams may already be full.

Register for the October 30, 2019 Strategic Doing Day
and you will be connected within your region

Welcome Back Level III Member!
City of Harrisonburg
city of hburg logo
The Harrisonburg MSA is a hub for technology development. Employers are quickly discovering the tremendous assets available in the Harrisonburg area. Ideally situated two hours from Washington, D.C. and Richmond, the Shenandoah Valley offers a great quality of life, a highly skilled workforce, and a robust technology infrastructure. Harrisonburg specializes in growing information technology businesses for health and security solutions. James Madison University, with its emphasis on information security and information assurance, offers a competitive advantage as Harrisonburg seeks to attract technology developers and to foster the development of homegrown technology businesses. Come see why industry leaders Rosetta Stone, SRI International, Convergent AI, Merck, Jenzabar, Chiedo Labs, and Serco are investing hundreds of millions of dollars in this thriving market.

Welcome Back Level II Member!
Shentel (Shenandoah Communications)
Shentel (Shenandoah Telecommunications Company) (NASDAQ: SHEN) is a diversified telecommunications company providing both regulated and unregulated telecommunications services through its wholly owned subsidiaries. These subsidiaries provide local exchange telephone services and wireless personal communications services (as a Sprint PCS affiliate of Sprint Nextel), as well as cable television, video, Internet and data services, fiber optics facilities and leased tower facilities. Chris Kyle, previously served on the SVTC Board of Directors.

Welcome Back Level I Member!
Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative

Chartered in 1936, SVEC maintains over 7,600 miles of electric lines and serves more than 90,000 member-owners' accounts in the counties of Augusta, Clarke, Frederick, Highland, Page, Rockingham, Shenandoah and Warren in Virginia, and the city of Winchester. Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative was the first electric cooperative chartered in Virginia.We Exist to Serve Our Member-Owners.We will provide reliable and safe electric service at the lowest possible cost within our service area, consistent with sound management and Cooperative principles.We will continually evaluate our member-owners. needs and work to exceed their expectations, pursuing opportunities that will benefit them.

  • Sproutly, New Market (UX Designer)
  • Blue Ridge Community College, Weyers Cave (Computer Programming Boot
    Camp Instructor)
  • Ryzing Technologies, Staunton (Engineering Technician)
  • Vision Technology Group, Harrisonburg (Tier III Network Engineer)
  • Budget Referee, Harrisonburg (Full Stack Developer with front end web development focus)
Participate in the local tech conversation: Rocktown Tech (Slack)

Currently there are 18 channels and over 250 members. Please join in! 
Sign-up link:

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Let us know when you incorporate this graphic and we'll mention your site in return!

See how our Level I Members  grep Innovation, LLC displayed our membership badge on their  website!

The Shenandoah Valley Technology Council does not endorse the companies, organizations, teams, or events mentioned, or take a stand on any of the articles or notices or events included.

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Shenandoah Valley Technology Council
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