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Co-ops get international award for technology innovation in economic development


Ben Shinabery of Qk4, an engineering and planning firm, holds a drone used by Kentucky’s Touchstone Energy Co-ops to provide aerial views of available industrial tracts. The technology enables companies worldwide to conduct virtual site visits and quickly analyze communities.

 

Kentucky's Touchstone Energy Cooperatives received an international award for using innovative technology to bring jobs and investment to Kentucky.

The cooperatives were awarded the Excellence In Economic Development Award for New Media at the International Economic Development Council's annual conference in Toronto.

"This award recognizes that Kentucky's Touchstone Energy Cooperatives are pioneers in using technology to drive economic development," said CEO Tony Campbell.

To better gain attention for communities located primarily in rural Kentucky, the co-ops have developed ground-breaking tools to showcase Kentucky's resources to industries looking to expand or relocate.

In particular, the IEDC award singled out PowerMap featuring StateBook and PowerVision, a project that combines GPS mapping with StateBook's economic development database and drone-captured video and data to make Kentucky's sites highly visible and accessible around the globe. And it's all contained in applications for handheld devices.

Since the beginning of 2015, Kentucky's Touchstone Energy Cooperatives have been involved in economic development projects that resulted in 7,000 jobs and over $2 billion in investment for Kentucky.

To download the technology to your smart phone, go to your app store and search for KY PowerMap.