About OVConnect

A bird's eye view of the legislative lunch at River City.

A bird’s eye view of the legislative lunch at River City.

OVConnect, Inc. isn’t your typical Ohio Valley organization.  Sure, like many other membership-based groups, we sink our teeth into the community and strive to better it through educational or networking events, fundraisers, and bar crawls, but we do it with… wait, what?! Bar crawls?!

It’s more of a pub-run, actually, and it’s just one of the many types of events we put on throughout the year in order to fulfill our core mission of connecting like-minded young professionals throughout the Ohio Valley with each other.

Simply put: we’re an organization of young professionals for young professionals.  We believe in fostering ideas to move this Valley forward.  We believe in networking.  We believe in giving back to the community while developing as individuals.  And as you might have guessed from the paragraph above, we believe in washing all that down with some good-old-fashioned fun!

All sorts of characters gather together to network at one of their Pub Run stops.

All sorts of characters gather together to network at one of their Pub Run stops.

Our members come from all over the Upper Ohio Valley.  From the lush, green hills of the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia and Southeastern Ohio, to the sprawling Washington – Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania region, we’re represented by a wide variety of individuals from a wide variety of businesses and organizations in many different industries.

Our members include bankers, doctors, marketers, non-profit directors and volunteers, attorneys, business owners, artists of all kinds, Web developers, sales professionals, dentists, insurance providers, accountants, chiropractors, educators, stockbrokers, and many other professions. It’s also open to folks entering the work force, getting their education, or staying at home to raise their families.  It is not open, however, to “fuddy-duddies”, whatever they are.  Sorry, duds.

Whether you…

  • Are new to the area and looking for ways to “plug-in”
  • Have been around for a while and are looking for fun/informative events to attend
  • Need to network for professional opportunities for yourself or your business/organization
  • Are comfortable in your career but looking to connect with others

… OVConnect would love to have you amongst its ranks. Membership is $20.00 for the year and gets you a whole slew of tangible benefits, but the connections and friendships you’ll make very well could be priceless.

A Word about our Structure

Members learning about International Business while enjoying a lunch at Oglebay.

Members learning about International Business while enjoying a lunch at Oglebay.

OVConnect is its own free-standing organization incorporated in the state of West Virginia (although, again, we are very much an organization for Ohio and Pennsylvania).

We are a member organization of Generation West Virginia, an umbrella group of professional organizations across West Virginia including others that are associated with more than just WV.

We are run by a volunteer Board of Directors, consisting of fourteen local professionals. Moving forward Director openings will be voted on by our membership base each year, with each Director receiving a three-year term. For 2013, our Board of Directors is comprised of:

2015 OVConnect Board Members

  • Eriks Janelsins (President)
  • Ted Dodd (Vice-President)
  • Jacob Manning (Treasurer)
  • Kayleen Fitzsimmons (Secretary)
  • Russell Dunkin (Marketing)
  • John Aderholt
  • Sarah Koegler
  • Missy Ashmore
  • Adam Mull
  • Geoff Skadra
  • Elizabeth Reinhardt
  • Jeff Kaiser
  • Tina Greer
  • Jake Dougherty

We are funded solely by membership dues and events we offer that are above the break-even point. We are also fortunate to have received several grants to support our efforts here in the Ohio Valley.

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