Grand Marshals selected for West Union Fourth of July Parade Adams County, Maysville Vet team up to save injured dog Michael S Knauff Victor P Price Success builds from the bottom up Finalists named for 2017 Fair Queen Contest William Glenn DeWine, Reader Call For Tips in Rhoden Murder Investigation MHS principal to take superintendent post Peebles Skate Park now a reality 2017-18 Fur and Feather Ambassadors named Caley Grooms is Cattlemen’s Beef Ambassador Dr. Mueller leaving Health Department’s free clinic Hourglass Quilt Barn returning to Adams County Lung, Thornburg are First Team All-District selections North Adams hosts annual Boys Basketball Camps Walk-off winner Wanda Hill George D Johnson Life can be a juggling act My favorite thing to do on the farm Wolves in Adams County! Ronald L Wedmore Three lessons from Dad Donald D Morgan Wenstrup uninjured in Virginia shooting Portman staff to hold grant funding workshop Raymond E Applegate Keeping the Peebles tradition alive Back on the hardwood, local hoops squads compete in Monday Night League Seven county athletes recognized as All-SHAC Baseball honorees Stepping to the podium Lady Hounds host Youth Volleyball Camp Senior Profile: Bryan Young Junior Deputy Boot Camps kick off in Manchester Hayes pleads “not guilty” to 109 counts Six-year-old girl finds long-lost class ring Jefferson Alumni awards annual scholarships Paul Tate Jr Marcus I Cox Jewell Gill James M Hill Jr Jeffrey S Jones Samuel A Disher Jack Sterling BREAKING NEWS: Parents face charges after son overdoses on opiate License Hikes and Tall Turkey Tales Danger under every rock Reigning Miss Ohio USA will judge 2017 Adams County Fair Queen Pageant Gordley’s hoops career will continue at Mount St. Joseph Russell C Newman Kenneth C Thurman George Uebel Summer Reading Program underway Honor Flight carries local veteran to DC When rescuers become victims Passing the torch, West Union hosts week-long basketball camp for future Dragons SENIOR PROFILE: Sara Knechtly Terry L Powell Willie Shreffler James C Fitzpatrick Senior Profile: Austin Parks Six countians named to All-SHAC Softball squad Lady Indians get summer camp season underway Memorial Day services pay tribute to local veterans WUHS Steel Band will perform at Bogart’s SSCC announces Honors Lists for spring semester Peebles Elementary releases Honor Roll for final nine weeks West Union Elementary announces Honor Roll for fourth nine weeks Back to State! Mom calls daughter “living proof” seat belts save lives Rent-2-Own donation means new soccer scoreboard at WUHS NAHS student selected for Engineering Summer Camp Southern Hills Athletic Conferences honors Spring Sports athletes Senior Profile: Kailyn Boyd Madison Welch receives Riffle Scholarship Junior Achievement Volunteers visit county’s seventh graders Marcella J Abbott James Ratliff Gladys Davitz Harry G Shupert Memories on Memorial Day A soldier’s story, a family’s grief Thank You for your sacrifice Seaman community honors local veterans with special tribute Former PES teacher dies in tragic accident All County Senior Citizens Day celebrated Parks signs with SSCC Soccer Senior Profile: Lexie Bunn Jessie Rodgers Memorial Day services set for county Truly our greatest generation Bertha Lashley Maia Swartz Jessie Rodgers Errors spell the end of Devils’ baseball season Senior Profile: Carry Hayslip Lady Hounds’ season ends with tourney loss to Paint Valley North Adams hosts Youth Volleyball Camp Time to get “Stroke Savvy”

Opening the door for high-tech jobs

Temporarily working out of a classroom at the old Bentonville School, the newly hired trainees of Artectis learn the ins and outs of high-tech jobs that have made their way to Adams County.


Tech company believes rural communities can compete for outsourced jobs –

Story and photos by Patricia Beech –

Could high-tech jobs currently outsourced to India be successfully transplanted to rural areas like Adams County?
Two men think it’s not only possible, but probable – and the bottom line – highly profitable.
C.L. “Skip” Wagner and Zane Mingee, both Manchester natives, have entered an agreement with a Cincinnati-based computer-server company to train local residents to do high-tech jobs currently being done by workers in other countries.
“Jobs coming to Adams County is amazing news,” says Wagner in an exclusive interview with The Defender. “And, the fact that they’re pretty advanced, high-tech jobs takes it to a whole other level.”
Wagner, a computer whiz kid and high school drop out who by the age of 17 was traveling the world working as an Integration Engineer for a computer service company, now holds the position of Business Development Manager in Mingee’s company, Artectis.
Over 80% of Artectis clients are big data analytics companies who collect data and use it for market research that allows them to target online advertisements that will generate more traffic to their business websites. The data gathered by these companies is stored on servers which are maintained and supported by Artectis.
“One of our long-time clients was paying a company in another country for server maintenance, and the support they were getting was really horrible even though they were paying them quite a lot of money,” said Wagner. “So I pitched a radical idea to them – let Artectis find and train local people who can take over as your support team.”
Wagner admits the company was skeptical about their ability to produce a competitive workforce.
“I explained we were both from a place where the average annual income per household in the 2010 census was $16,750,” he said. “After a lot of prodding from myself and Zane, they finally agreed that if we trained the people and matched the price they were currently paying, they’d let us have the work.”
Wagner says that many Americans buy into the myth that people in other countries work for pennies on the hour. “That isn’t the reality,” he says. “I can hire a programmer in India for $15 an hour, but I’d rather hire someone here in Adams County, especially with the closing of the power plants and the loss of millions in tax-based revenue – we need to explore every avenue and ask ourselves what we have to offer that no one else does – a work force that’s eager to work.”

These workers are the beginning of a new tech company in Adams County, Artectis. From left, C.L. “Skip” Wagner, Ray Littleton, Kamen Monroe, Mark Monroe, Kyle Monroe, Shawna Ballingee, Damien Morgan, and Zane Mingee.

After conducting over 150 interviews, Mingee and Wagner chose nine local people for the training program.
“We’ve got a class full of folks who, honestly at the start of training knew very little about what this industry is about, or how to do any of the work they are now doing on a daily basis,” says Wagner.  “They’re figuring out problems on their own in very complex systems that two weeks ago they had no concept of.”
According to Wagner, the trainees are learning how networks function, how to repair servers, how to modify and migrate data between servers, how to monitor servers and spot problems, and how to configure new servers for new clients.
“I wasn’t at all familiar with Linux systems, and they took a chance on me,” says trainee Shawna Ballingee. “Doing this training from the base up has demonstrated that these are learnable skills that don’t require a strong base knowledge,”
“I see a great future for these technology-based jobs in this area,” said Ray Littleton who was chosen to participate in the training program. A former FedEx employee, Littleton say he spent three hours a day commuting to and from work. “Normally, to get this type of job you’d have to drive for a couple of hours, I think it’s great they’re bringing this work here.”
“People do not put much faith in folks from Appalachia, but people here are some of the most hard-working and honest people in the world,” says Wagner. “They’ve just never been able to get a fair shake at things and many opportunities have simply never been here.  We want to change that and we believe with the scale of the economies in areas like Adams County, many, many more corporations will move to models like this.
“We’re leading the charge and we’ve managed to figure out a way to make this work on all levels – the talent, the training, the pure business of it all, and the dollars and cents.”

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