Appalachian Regional Commission Names Robert Burns for READY Nonprofits Fall Cohort

Burns to represent Eastern WORCS in 10-week learning track designed for Appalachian nonprofit leaders

MOOREFIELD, W.Va.The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) named Robert Burns, director of Eastern Workforce Opportunity Regional Center and Services (WORCS), to participate in the Fall 2022 Cohort of READY Nonprofits, one of four learning tracks in ARC’s READY Appalachia initiative.

An image of a man's face.
Rob Burns

Selected through a competitive application process, Burns will participate in 10 weeks of course work and peer-to-peer learning designed specifically for Appalachian nonprofits and delivered by an array of content specialists. Once Burns completes the 10-week course, Eastern WORCS is eligible to apply for up to $25,000 in match-free funding to implement a capacity-building project in West Virginia’s Potomac Highlands region.

“By helping local leaders and nonprofit organizations to build on their capacity to develop infrastructure projects and workforce development initiatives in our communities, READY Appalachia will also help increase equity for our Appalachian people and ensure that the region’s resilience and success will transform their future,” said ARC Federal Co-Chair Gayle Manchin.

READY Nonprofits Fall 2022 Cohort members will develop skills across a variety of areas, including:

  • Fundraising
  • Financial management
  • Board development
  • Staff and volunteer recruitment and retention
  • Program and operations management
  • Marketing, communications, and story telling

“It is exciting to see Rob Burns take advantage of this opportunity,” said Thomas Striplin, Ed.D., president of Eastern West Virginia Community and Technical College. “I am sure it will allow Eastern WORCS to support our community and grow our workforce. “

About READY Appalachia

READY Appalachia is an Appalachian Regional Commission community-capacity building initiative offering free training and flexible funding for nonprofit organizations, community foundations, local governments, and Local Development Districts (LDDs) in the Appalachian Region. Participants access cohort-based learning, skill-development, and grant opportunities to increase their capacity to solve pressing issues and effect long-lasting economic change in their communities.

About the Appalachian Regional Commission

The Appalachian Regional Commission ( is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 423 counties across the Appalachian Region. ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the Region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.

About Eastern WORCS

Eastern Workforce Opportunity Regional Center and Services (WORCS) is a non-profit organization affiliated with Eastern West Virginia Community and Technical College, based in Moorefield. Eastern WORCS supports local and regional initiatives that improve the college’s ability to strengthen innovation-based economic and workforce development in West Virginia’s Potomac Highlands. Learn more about Eastern WORCS’ efforts by visiting