WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, WV –
Today, Gov. Jim Justice addressed a collection of state technology directors from across the eastern United States, who have gathered in West Virginia for this year’s National Association of State Technology Directors Eastern Region Seminar.
The seminar provides an opportunity for these various state technology directors to share information about progress they have made over the past year, while also reflecting about challenges they’ve faced as well as strategies they’ve used to solve these problems to help their respective state governments run more efficiently.
“I truly can’t thank you enough for being here in West Virginia this week,” Gov. Justice said. “You all are some of the very brightest and smartest and all of your knowledge is unbelievable. We need you all to broaden our intelligence and teach us what we need to be doing to help us move our state and our entire country forward as technology keeps changing every day.”
During his address, the governor discussed his commitment to improving access to technology for all West Virginians, touting recent partnerships with Facebook and Zayo to build hundreds of miles of fiber lines across the state. He also mentioned how, over the past month, he’s been able to hand out more than $2 million in federal grants to improve broadband infrastructure for thousands of people from nearly 20 rural communities across West Virginia.
“Our commitment to high-speed internet, to broadband, and to all high tech in general is real,” Gov. Justice said. “I’ll do anything and everything I possibly can to extend a chance at better technology to all West Virginians because the opportunities that the best of the best technology provides is limitless.”
Gov. Justice also discussed his recent signing of the computer science bill, which will make West Virginia one of the first states in the country to require that computer science education be made available to students at all grade levels and in all schools statewide.
“When you think about all of the opportunities these programs and projects are providing for our young people to learn about technology and become technology masters, it’s really good stuff,” Gov. Justice said. “Our state is on the move. We are a rock’s throw away from two-thirds of the population of this country and we’re doing everything we can so that the next big tech company can be started right here in West Virginia and right out of somebody’s basement.
“You’re all a big part of helping us do that,” Gov. Justice said. “And we can’t thank you enough for everything you’re doing for both our state and for our entire nation.”
The seminar, which began on Monday, will continue through this Thursday, with additional addresses by technology directors from West Virginia, Vermont, Rhode Island, Maine, Connecticut, Virginia and Pennsylvania.