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USDA Rural Development Announces Funding for Digital Job Training Program for Military Spouses, Veterans, and Families

Hilda Legg Ky State Director Usda Rural Development Center In Blue Presents Tom Ferree Connected Nation Chairman Ceo With A Plaque Commemorating The Grant 1024x753
Hilda Legg, KY State Director, USDA Rural Development (center in blue) presents Tom Ferree, Connected Nation Chairman & CEO, with a plaque commemorating the grant

Bowling Green, Ky. (October 14, 2020) – USDA Rural Development of Kentucky announced today a nearly $85,000 grant to support Connected Nation’s Digital Works program in the state.

"Rural development is here to create an improved economy and quality of life for rural communities across the state of Kentucky." said Hilda Legg, State Director of Kentucky for USDA Rural Development, during the announcement.

“As part of that work, I have had a passion about deploying broadband since the early 2000’s, and, since COVID-19, there has been a huge emphasis on ubiquitous broadband for all. Our Rural Business Development Grant Program helps improve rural economics with technical assistance and training and this program [Digital Works], in particular, is focused on our veterans and military family members by providing them remote-based jobs.”

Through that grant program, USDA Rural Development is providing a year’s worth of funding to expand the Digital Works program. The funding will be used for digital training and job placement assistance, including career-readiness training, for military spouses, veterans, and military families in Kentucky.

“Due to the transient nature of the military, our spouses face unique challenges finding employment opportunities," said Col. CJ King, Fort Knox garrison commander. "So, it's particularly special, not to mention appreciated, when people and organizations come together with innovative ideas and a genuine commitment to achieve solutions."

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Col. CJ King, Fort Knox garrison commander

Connected Nation is a national nonprofit, based in Bowling Green, with a mission to identify innovative solutions to expand the access, adoption, and use of broadband (high-speed internet) and related technologies. The Digital Works program was developed as the workforce component of that mission.

“Over the life of our nearly 20 years as an organization, there is perhaps no greater expression of our mission to empower individuals and communities than through the work of our Digital Works program,” said Tom Ferree, Chairman & CEO, Connected Nation, during the event. “Through this effort, we are investing in the training and placement of today’s digitally remote workforce.  Along with our 70 plus nation-wide employer partners, our wonderful and dedicated staff, we train, place and mentor individuals so that opportunity is available to anyone who would seek it, irrespective of their geography.  This is especially important to those living in our country’s rural areas where employment options are often limited.  The program allows individuals and families to stay in the towns and farming communities they love – while being able to work.”

To sign up or learn more about the Digital Works program, email us at or head to

Jessica Denson, Communications Director
(502) 341-2024

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About Digital Works:  This program of Connected Nation connects people to leading-edge customer support and IT jobs for global corporations by providing training, mentorship, and job placement assistance, as well as the opportunity for advanced careers.

About Connected Nation: Our mission is to improve lives by providing innovative solutions that expand access to and increase the adoption and use of broadband (high-speed internet) and its related technologies for all people. Everyone belongs in a Connected Nation.

Connected Nation works with consumers, local community leaders, states, technology providers, and foundations to develop and implement technology expansion programs with core competencies centered on a mission to improve digital inclusion for people and places previously underserved or overlooked. For more information, please visit: and follow Connected Nation on Facebook and Twitter.