GRIT Project announces new collaboration

Staff report

NEW BOSTON — The Growing Rural Independence Together Through Jobs (GRIT) Project announced a new collaboration with CBTS to provide mentorship to area workforce development.

GRIT is a $20 million collaborative workforce development pilot program designed to maximize federal, state and county resources in rural Ohio to build a high-demand workforce and stimulate economic growth through public/private partnerships in Southern Ohio. The goal is to increase economic development by strengthening the workforce and possibly build a virtual work center in which folks can work for companies virtually from our area. The proposed outcome would put 5,000 people to work in living wage or career-pathway jobs.

CBTS is a leading technology provider that delivers communications, cloud, infrastructure, and consulting solutions to clients – including the State of Ohio – across North America. CBTS is part of Cincinnati Bell Inc., a 147-year-old company that delivers integrated communications solutions to residential and business customers over its networks in areas of Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana.

“CBTS is proud to partner with GRIT on this important initiative to support economic development and employment throughout Southern Ohio,” said Tim Lonsway, vice president of Government Education Services for CBTS. “Our employees are excited to share their thought leadership and help the state leverage technology to drive employment and business development opportunities.”

Sandy Mers – South Central Ohio ESC Superintendent and GRIT member – thanked Lonsway and CBTS for joining the GRIT project.

“One of the most immediate needs we have is to expand our coaching pool. Tim eagerly pledged himself and others on his team to go through the coach training process and become a certified GRIT coach. We are excited to have the CBTS partnership and know this is just the beginning of a wonderful relationship based on GRIT,” Mers said.

For more information about GRIT and the South Central Ohio ESC, visit online at, or follow on Facebook and Twitter.

Staff report