April 1, 2015
Rajant’s wireless networks are used by the military, homeland security, emergency services, and mining…
Morehead, KY — A huge crowd was in attendance Monday, March 30, at the Morehead Conference Center in Morehead, KY, as the Rowan County Economic Development Dept. announced that a new company will be locating in the area.
Rajant, a Philadelphia, PA based company that builds wireless networks using kinetic mesh technology will be locating in Morehead, partnering with Morehead State University’s Space Science Center. The company is investing $762,000 in the new facility located on Main Street.
MSU President and Rowan Co. Economic Development Director, Dr. Wayne Andrews began by saying Rajant’s decision to locate here is exactly what the SOAR Initiative (Shaping Our Appalachian Region) is all about; developing new innovative economies by leveraging the resources we have which include hardworking, creative, people. SOAR was created by Congressman Hal Rogers and Governor Steve Beshear in an effort to bring eastern Kentucky through the declining coal industry into new diverse economies. Andrews said “this is result of two different parties working for a common purpose, laying politics aside.”
Governor Beshear said “This is an exciting day.” After coming through an economic recession, the Governor said “We are on the upswing. Last month, unemployment dropped to 5.2%; lower than the national rate, and 50,000 new jobs were created in Kentucky.” He went on to say that unemployment in eastern Kentucky was higher due to the decline of the coal industry.
Rajant’s wireless networks are used by the military, homeland security, emergency services, and mining. The company will be working with MSU’s Space Science Center to develop wireless networks used in space.
Andrews then introduced Congressman Rogers who said, “I’ve long preached that if we think outside the box, other than coal, we can come up with diverse economies.” He said that is exactly what they are doing with Rajant, a company that deals in state of the art technology. “Welcome to Silicone Holler” said Rogers. “High speed broadband will go over the mountains to every nook and cranny in eastern Kentucky so we can join the rest of the world.” Rogers welcomed Rajant’s CEO, Robert Schena to eastern Kentucky, where “you will find the friendliest people in the world.”
State Representative, Rocky Adkins, was present and thanked Schena for “believing in us and coming to our community.” He also thanked Governor Beshear and Congressman Rogers for working across party lines to move the area forward.
Adkins told the crowd “remember where you were when this announcement was made, and the 28 jobs that will turn into 1000.”
Rajant CEO, Robert Schena, then spoke to the crowd and said “I saw two traits in the leaders of this area; enthusiasm and loyalty. That impressed me.” He said the leadership team here was the one of the best he’s seen anywhere.
Rowan County Judge Executive, Walter ‘Doc’ Blevins said “I’m proud to be here” and thanked Governor Beshear, Congressman Rogers, Robert Schena and all the others who made this day possible. “I’ve been in the Senate 33 years” Blevins said, explaining that he is happy to be working in the community to help move it forward, and the Rajant company will be a huge asset to Rowan County and the surrounding area.
Mayor Jim Tom Trent was also on hand to welcome Rajant into the community. “The investment Mr. Schena and Rajant are making in the community is an example of the potential that is here for investors in the aerospace and technology industry.
Officials and economic developers from the surrounding area were invited to Monday’s announcement, and had the opportunity to talk with folks concerning economic issues.
Lawrence County Judge Executive, John Osborne and Economic Development Coordinator, Catrina Vargo attended the event. “This is a good thing for eastern Kentucky, if the technology is here, other businesses will come to the area.
Vargo said it is imperative that we be able to compete not just with other states, but with the rest of the world. “Implementing high speed broadband throughout eastern Kentucky will help to achieve that goal.”
Dr. Andrews thanked everyone for attending the announcement.