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October 9, 2018
NC Workforce Boards Recipients of Innovation Award

NADO Announces 2018 Innovation Award Recipients
in Honor of Aliceann Wohlbruck

Congratulations to the 2018 NADO Innovation Awards recipients!  Each year, the Innovation Awards program honors NADO members for their creative approaches to advancing regional community and economic development and improved quality of life.  These projects have made significant impacts on their regions and demonstrate the diversity of services and program delivery provided by regional development organizations across the country.  The 2018 class of award recipients consists of 90 projects spanning 24 states.

Congratulations to these North Carolina Workforce Boards who were recipients of this year’s award:

  • Albemarle Commission, Northeastern Workforce Development Board’s NextGen Career Cafes
  • Kerr-Tar Regional Council of Governments, Pathways to Prosperity (read more)
  • Land of Sky Regional Council, WestNGN Broadband Initiative
  • Land of Sky Regional Council, The Asheville Terrace Community Health Worker Project
  • Land of Sky Regional Council, Upskill WNC
  • Piedmont Triad Regional Council, Triad Tomorrow – Building Our Communities For Tomorrow’s Jobs
  • Piedmont Triad Regional Council, Disc Golf: A Work-based Learning Initiative
  • Upper Coastal Plain Council of Governments, UCPCOG Regional Education Opportunity Facilities Program
  • Western Piedmont Council of Governments, Burke County Quality of Life Explorer
  • Western Piedmont Council of Governments, NEXTGen Hiring Event

This year’s awards are presented in honor of Aliceann Wohlbruck, who passed away in March 2018.  Aliceann was NADO’s first executive director, serving 24 years as a tireless champion for regional approaches to economic development in rural communities.  She was a strong advocate for regional development organizations that serve primarily rural communities and regions.  Throughout the 1990s she played a major role in the efforts to reauthorize EDA, ARC, and DRA.  Aliceann was more than an executive director, she was also a friend and mentor to NADO members and staff.  Her hard work and determination built the foundation for the organization that exists today.  We honor Aliceann’s legacy with this year’s awards.

The award-winning projects will be recognized at a special reception during NADO’s 2018 Annual Training Conference, scheduled for October 13 – 16 in Charlotte, NC and will be featured in an interactive online Story Map created by our partners at Esri.

For additional information, contact NADO Research Foundation Associate Director Brett Schwartz at


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