Mercer County man heads to D.C. for “Digital Transformation Summit”

Published: Feb. 1, 2023 at 6:33 PM EST
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BLUEFIELD, W.Va. (WVVA) - The U.S. Government is looking to modernize its technology at the federal level with a “Digital Transformation Summit,” set for Thursday at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C..

Set to join in on the summit and share his perspective is Mercer County’s Randy Fowler -- one of a range of Americans from the private sector, government and more invited to the day-long event.

WVVA spoke with Fowler in the lead-up to his trip to the nation’s capital, and he said it’s clear the feds have a lot of work to do.

“The government is way behind,” said Fowler. “The private sector has outpaced government ten to one.”

Fowler has lived in Southern W.Va. his entire life -- and at 52-years-old, he’s seen modern technology grow from its infancy to 2023′s standards in the blink of an eye.

“It’s actually a wonderful age group to be in,” said Fowler. “I’ve been able to watch and live and be a part of changes...My first computer was a was a Commodore Plus 4.”

On Thursday, Fowler will join representatives from across the United States to speak with government and business leaders, and share his perspective on where things need to go.

“This summit is going to be the first of its kind and like I said, I’d like to see it be the last one,” said Fowler. “And it needs to be done quickly because the rest of the world is out-pacing America.”

Fowler said he hopes his experience, growing up with technology and working in engineering, flight and other areas will help him emphasize the needs of his home area.

A local leader in Mercer County with experience advocating at the federal level, said getting out and making one’s voice heard is the way to improve things at a large scale.

“Yelling about it, complaining about it, gets nothing done,” said Greg Puckett, Mercer County Commissioner. “You can be an advocate, you can do the things you need to do and you can have a greater voice if you do it in the right way. And that’s really to be outspoken and say ‘you know what? I believe it can be better, this is the way I’d do it, and let’s all get together and figure out how to learn.’”

For Fowler, he said his ideal outcome for Thursday’s summit would be to see no need for a second one.