Steve Beshear
Old Capitol Annex
300 West Broadway Frankfort, KY 40601
Larry Hayes
June 25, 2015
For Immediate Release
Kerri Richardson

Terry Sebastian

New Vision Set Kentucky Workforce Innovation Board

Also signs executive order to designate local workforce development areas, regions

FRANKFORT, Ky. (June 25, 2015) – In a move that continues his emphasis on building a stronger, world-class workforce, Gov. Steve Beshear today by executive order reconstituted the Kentucky Workforce Innovation Board (KWIB), citing the crucial role it will play in giving global companies the competitive edge they need in the Commonwealth.

“The quality of our workforce is the key factor that will dictate Kentucky’s ability to attract the jobs of the future and ensure Kentucky’s prosperity,” said Gov. Beshear. “That’s why I’m directing the new board to initiate and oversee critical strategies that will link workforce policies, education and training programs, and funding with the economic development needs of the Commonwealth and its regions in mind.”

Attached to the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet, the new KWIB will ensure the state’s compliance with the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014 (WIOA), the first legislative reform of the public workforce system in more than 15 years. WIOA reauthorizes the Workforce Investment Act of 1998.

The new law requires a restructuring of state workforce development boards so that at least 51 percent of their membership must represent businesses and 20 percent of the membership is made up of workforce representatives in the state.

“I’d like to thank our former board for the work it did to lay the foundation in our mission to modernize our workforce development system,” said Gov. Beshear. “Its guidance in developing and implementing a strategic plan has been the driving force behind transforming our state workforce programs – strategies that have now been recognized nationally as models for other states.”

The Governor has instructed the new KWIB to consider and make recommendations on the continuous improvement of the workforce development system. This includes strategically aligning the resources of the state’s workforce, economic and educational systems, business and labor, and elected officials so that workers acquire skills and credentials that businesses need to compete and create jobs in the Commonwealth.

The group’s overarching goal will be to foster a modern system of workforce development activities that will be flexible, coherent and responsive to the needs of business while designed to ensure that Kentucky builds a workforce able to meet the challenges of the 21st century. “I have said many times that our highest priority should be to build a workforce in Kentucky that companies cannot wait to hire,” said Gov. Beshear.

Gov. Beshear has appointed representatives of major sectors of Kentucky’s economy to the KWIB who come from all parts of the Commonwealth and are associated with both small and large businesses. He has also appointed representatives of critical workforce partners and state and local government. Membership for the new KWIB has been appointed as follows:

  • Governor
  • One member of each chamber of the General Assembly
  • Secretary of the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet
  • Secretary of the Cabinet for Economic Development
  • Secretary of the Labor Cabinet
  • President of the Council on Postsecondary Education
  • President of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System
  • Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Education

The Governor has appointed the following individuals to serve as members of the Board for terms expiring June 30, 2016:

  • Peter Feil, of Fort Thomas, is vice president and general manager for Stober Drives Inc. and shall represent manufacturing.
  • Terry Spears, of Pikeville, is a small business banking officer for Community Trust Bank in Pikeville and shall represent business.
  • Scott Pierce, of Jamestown, is a union affiliate and shall represent engineering trades.
  • James Neihof, of Simpsonville, is superintendent of Shelby County Public Schools and shall represent youth.
  • George Steele is mayor of Grayson and shall represent local government.
  • Micheal Hale is Barren County judge-executive and shall represent local government.

The Governor has appointed the following individuals to serve as members of the board for terms expiring June 30, 2017:

  • Heidi Margulis, of Louisville, is senior vice president of corporate affairs for Humana and shall represent health care services.
  • Kurt Krug, of Springfield, is vice president of North American human resources for INOAC USA Inc. and shall represent manufacturing.
  • Rodney Hitch, of Morehead, is manager of economic development for East Kentucky Power Cooperative and shall represent energy.
  • Patrick Murphy, of Louisville, is human resources manager for United Parcel Service and shall represent distribution.
  • John Baines, of Fort Thomas, is president of HAHN Automation Inc. and shall represent information technology.
  • David Boggs, of Frankfort, is president and CEO for Opportunity for Work and Learning and shall represent the offender community.
  • Sharon Fields, of Frankfort, is self-employed and shall represent persons with disabilities.
  • John Thacker, of Russell, is president of the National Conference of Firemen and Oilers and shall represent transportation trades.
  • Parvin Gibbs, of Madisonville, is retired from the military and shall represent veterans and the military.

The Governor has appointed the following individuals to serve as members of the Board for terms expiring June 30, 2018:

  • Rep. Larry Clark, of Louisville, shall represent the Kentucky House of Representatives.
  • Sen. Jimmy Higdon, of Lebanon, shall represent the Kentucky State Senate.
  • Ashley Miller, of Louisville, is a nurse practitioner for Planned Parenthood of Kentucky and shall represent health care services.
  • Jason Luring, of Lexington, is human resources area director for Catalent Pharma Solutions and shall represent manufacturing.
  • Bill Weier, of Edgewood, is human resources director for Fives Machining Systems Inc. and shall represent manufacturing
  • M. Lynn Parrish, of Pikeville, is president of Marwood Land Company and shall represent energy.
  • Marlin Jiranek, of Elizabethtown, is chief operating officer for Atlas Development Group LCC and shall represent entrepreneurship.
  • Carla Webster, of Nicholasville, is program manager for Xerox and shall represent information technology.
  • Steve Willinghurst, of Louisville, is training director for Louisville Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee and shall represent electrical trades.
  • Amy Luttrell, of Louisville, is president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of Kentucky and shall represent disadvantaged populations.

Gov. Beshear has appointed the following individuals to serve as members of the Board for terms expiring June 30, 2019:

  • Ruth Brinkley, of Louisville, is president and CEO of KentuckyOne Health and shall represent health care.
  • Hugh Haydon, of Louisville, is chairman and CEO of Kentucky Bioprocessing LCC and shall represent manufacturing. He shall serve as chair.
  • Mike Price, of Lexington, is vice president of administration for Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky Inc. and shall represent manufacturing.
  • Robert Southard, of Owensboro, is an analyst for Southern Star Central Gas Pipeline and shall represent energy.
  • Danette Wilder, of Lexington, is president and CEO of SealingLife Technology and shall represent entrepreneurship.
  • Madison Silvert, of Owensboro, is president and CEO of the Greater Owensboro Economic Development Corp. and shall represent business.
  • Freddy Peralta, of Lexington, is owner of KyTrade Computer Services and shall represent information technology.
  • Debbie Morris, of Bardstown, is vice president of human resources for Heaven Hill Brands and shall represent food and beverage-distillery.
  • Sharon Furches, of Murray, is a farmer and shall represent agriculture.
  • Jared Arnett, of Harold, is the executive director of Shaping Our Appalachian Region Inc. and shall represent disadvantaged populations.

Because significant dollars for appropriate and timely workforce training are managed and expended by local workforce investment boards, the new law requires the governor to designate local workforce development areas and to identify regions. After a comprehensive analysis of Kentucky’s labor markets, and upon the recommendation of the existing KWIB, Gov. Beshear signed an executive order designating 10 Local Workforce Development Areas and identifying four Workforce Development Planning Regions.

The 10 Local Workforce Development Areas have been designated as follows:

  • Bluegrass Local Workforce Development Area includes Anderson, Bourbon, Boyle, Clark, Estill, Fayette, Franklin, Garrard, Harrison, Jessamine, Lincoln, Madison, Mercer, Nicholas, Powell, Scott and Woodford counties.
  • Cumberlands Local Workforce Development Area includes Adair, Casey, Clinton, Cumberland, Green, Laurel, McCreary, Pulaski, Rockcastle, Russell, Taylor, Wayne and Whitley counties.
  • Eastern Kentucky Concentrated Employment Program (EKCEP) Local Workforce Development Area includes Bell, Breathitt, Carter, Clay, Elliot, Floyd, Harlan, Jackson, Johnson, Knott, Knox, Lawrence, Lee, Leslie Letcher, Magoffin, Martin, Menifee, Morgan, Owsley, Perry, Pike and Wolf counties.
  • Green River Local Workforce Development Area includes Daviess, Hancock, Henderson, McLean, Ohio, Union and Webster counties.
  • KentuckianaWorks Local Workforce Development Area includes Bullitt, Henry, Jefferson, Oldham, Shelby, Spencer and Trimble counties.
  • Lincoln Trail Local Workforce Development Area includes Breckinridge, Grayson, Hardin, Larue, Marion, Meade, Nelson and Washington counties.
  • Northern Kentucky Local Workforce Development Area includes Boone, Campbell, Carroll, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, Owen and Pendleton counties.
  • South Central Local Workforce Development Area includes Allen, Barren, Butler, Edmonson, Hart, Logan, Metcalfe, Monroe, Simpson and Warren counties.
  • TENCO Local Workforce Development Area includes Bath, Boyd, Bracken, Fleming, Greenup, Lewis, Mason, Montgomery, Robertson and Rowan counties.
  • West Kentucky Local Workforce Development Area includes Ballard, Caldwell, Calloway, Carlisle, Christian, Crittenden, Fulton, Graves, Hickman, Hopkins, Livingston, Lyon, Marshall, McCracken, Muhlenberg, Todd and Trigg.

Over the past six years, the former KWIB successfully implemented a strategic plan to streamline the workforce development system and improve the accountability and transparency in the operations of the Local Workforce Investment Areas. Initiatives such as High Impact Workforce Investment Boards, Eligible Training Provider List revision, Work Ready Communities and Sector Strategies provide standards and clear strategic direction for the local boards, align relevant regional resources to the needs of business and industry, ensure training providers meet requirements, and offer an accountability system for local citizens and businesses in assuring educational attainment, skills and training, and resources are sufficient and effective.

The Workforce Development Planning Regions are a new component of the system that encourages collaboration to meet the needs of regional economies. These regions will develop plans and coordinate service delivery within each region. Activities will include implementation of sector initiatives for in-demand industry sectors, collection and analysis of regional labor market data, consideration of shared administrative cost arrangements, coordination of transportation and supportive services and alignment with regional economic development.

The four regions have been identified as follows:

  • Central Region includes the Bluegrass, KentuckianaWorks, Lincon Trail and Northern Kentucky Local Workforce Development Areas.
  • East Region includes the EKCEP and TENCO Local Workforce Development Areas.
  • South Region includes the South Central and Cumberlands Local Workforce Development Areas.



The Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development is the primary state agency responsible for encouraging new jobs and investment in the state. New capital investment announced in Kentucky under the Bevin Administration has totaled more than $23.5 billion, spurring nearly 60,000 projected new jobs. Information on available industrial properties, workforce development assistance, incentive programs, community profiles, small business development and other economic development resources is available at Follow the Cabinet at, on Twitter @ThinkKentucky and on LinkedIn, and watch the Cabinet’s “Now you Know” video on YouTube.