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Our Mission

The Mission of the Virginia Rural Leadership Institute (VRLI) is to retain, attract, and develop rural Virginians into innovative, responsible, and civic minded leaders who build strong communities.

2023 Sessions and Dates

Session 1 - Southside Virginia

The Bee Hotel - Danville, VA

May 18, 19 & 20

Session 2 - Middle Peninsula/Northern Neck

St. Margaret's School - Tappahannock, VA

June 28, 29 & 30 (Note: Wed. - Fri.)

Session 3 - Southwest Virginia

Western Front Hotel - St. Paul, VA

September 7, 8 & 9
 

Session 4 - Shenandoah Valley

Hotel 24 South - Staunton, VA

November 2, 3 & 4

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2023 VRLI Alumni

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2023 Virginia Rural Leadership Institute at Graduation
24 of 28 Cohort Members Pictured

John Patrick Clair

Marion

Town of Marion, Chief of Police

 

Donna J. Dagner

Victoria

Community Resources Services, Executive Director

 

Jackie Davis      

Farnham            

Bay Consortium Workforce Development Board, Executive Director

 

Jessica K. Drake

Williamsburg

Filanthropie Consultancy, Founder & Principal

 

Jarrod Elwell     

Doswell              

Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Community Development Regional Manager

 

Todd Fortune

Farmville

Commonwealth Regional Council, Deputy Director

 

Olivia Garrett

Henry County

New College Institute, Director of Institutional Advancement

 

Josh Gillespie   

Louisa County  

County of Louisa, Director of Community Development

 

Courtney L. Harper

South Hill

Building Blocks to Success, LLC, CEO and Occupational Therapist

 

Darren Hayes

Freeman

Spotts Fain Consulting, Government Relations Assistant

 

Tabitha Hodge

Christiansburg

Floyd County Economic Development Operations Director

 

William Johnson, III

Emporia

City of Emporia, City Manager

 

Stephanie Lillard

Luray

People, Inc., Director of Community Economic Development

 

Jamie Lynn Anderson Lindley

South Boston

Comfort Systems USA MidAtlantic, Outreach, Recruiting, & Training Manager

Vanesa Livingstone

Warsaw

Richmond County Department of Social Services Director

 

Craig McCroskey

Bassett

United Way of Henry County & Martinsville, Director of Financial Stability Programs

 

Angela McPhaul

Waverly

Town of Waverly Mayor

 

Nick Minor        

King George County                     

King George County Director of Economic Development

 

Alex Rendon

Henrico County

Dominion Energy, External Affairs Representative

 

AJ Robinson

Tazewell County

Tazewell County Director of Communications and Tourism

 

Jennifer Schmack

Fluvanna County            

Fluvanna County Director of Economic Development

 

Beth Simms

Patrick County

Patrick County, County Administrator 

 

Kim Smith

Russell County

Heart of Appalachia, Interim Executive Director

 

Joe Sumner

Martinsville

New College Institute, Executive Director

 

Rhett Weiss

Farmville

DEALTEK, Ltd, Chairman & CEO

 

Alex White

Luray

Town of Luray Councilman

 

Kendra Wood

Aylett   

Rappahannock Community College, Dean of Strategic Enrollment Management

Dr. Terrence M. Wood

Greensville County

Greensville County Director of Human Resources

2022 VRLI Alumni

Questions?

Please Contact:

Chandler Vaughan

Policy and Leadership Adviser

Virginia Rural Leadership Institute

VaRuralLeadership@cfrv.org

Richelle Alexander

Lexington, VA

Rockbridge Area Housing Corporation, Assistant Property Manager

Luke Allison

Pulaski County, VA

Aggregate Capital LLC, Project Manager

Garrett Blaize

Wise County, VA

Appalachian Community Fund, Grants Manager and Regional Organizer

Neva Bryan

St. Paul, VA

University of Virginia's College at Wise (UVA Wise), Senior Director of Academic Enhancement & Coordinator of National Awards and Fellowships

Rebekah Castle

Augusta County, VA

Augusta County, Director of Economic Development and Marketing

James Clements

Prince George County, VA

University of Richmond, Full-Time MBA Student

Stacey English

Hopewell, VA

Prince George County, Interim Economic Development and Tourism Director

Jenna French

Shenandoah County, VA

Shenandoah County, Director of Tourism & Economic Development

Jessi Fritz, MBA

Abingdon, VA

Virginia Economic Development Partnership, Regional Business Manager (Talent Solutions)

Lydia Gilmer

Pulaski County, VA

Pulaski County, VA, Small Business Solutions Manager (Economic Development)

Shannon Hair, Ed.D

Danville, VA

Danville Community College, VP of Institutional Advancement & Development/Executive Director of DCC Educational Foundation, Inc.

Debbie Irwin

Staunton, VA

Shenandoah Community Capital Fund, Executive Director

Michelle Johnson

Charles City County, VA

Charles City County, County Administrator

Lisa Jordan, Ph.D

South Hill, VA

Southside Virginia Community College, Professor - History and Political Science, Coordinator - Campus Within Walls

Zachary King

Harrisonburg, VA

Virginia Poultry Growers Cooperative LLC, Sales Associate & Business Analyst

Lachanda Lee

Dinwiddie County, VA

Dinwiddie County, Director for Human Resources

Maggie Beal Longest, M.S.

Ashland, VA

Downtown Ashland Association, Executive Director

John Matthews

Wytheville, VA

Joint Industrial Development Authority of Wythe County, Deputy Director

Joseph Mengedoth, M.S.

Henrico County, VA

Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Regional Economist

Allison Moore

Pittsylvania County, VA

Institute for Advanced Learning and Research, Manager of Public Relations & Communications

Hope Mothershead

Richmond County, VA

Richmond County, VA, Director of Planning and Zoning

Julia Pilipenko

Augusta County, VA

Dominion Energy, External Affairs Representative

French Price

Woodstock, VA

Virginia Cooperative Extension, Value Chain Coordinator

Billie Roberts

Bluefield, VA

Virginia Community Capital, Community Innovation Advisor

Joy Rumley

Abingdon, VA

New River Valley Regional Commission, Senior Planner

Logan Ryan

Mechanicsville, VA

Covintus, Inc., Director of Community Engagement

Lauren Stuhldreher

North Chesterfield

VA - U.S. Dept. of Commerce, Economic Development Administration, Economic Development Representative for Virginia

Wendy Welch, Ph.D

Wythe County, VA

Graduate Medical Education Consortium of SWVA, Executive Director

James Werth, Ph.D

Bristol, VA

Tri-Area Community Health, CEO

2022 VRLI Cohort Members at Graduation

2023 Annual Sponsors

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