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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


Town of Marion, Chief of Police


Donna J. Dagner


Community Resources Services, Executive Director


Jackie Davis      


Bay Consortium Workforce Development Board, Executive Director


Jessica K. Drake


Filanthropie Consultancy, Founder & Principal


Jarrod Elwell     


Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Community Development Regional Manager


Todd Fortune


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


Spotts Fain Consulting, Government Relations Assistant


Tabitha Hodge


Floyd County Economic Development Operations Director


William Johnson, III


City of Emporia, City Manager


Stephanie Lillard


People, Inc., Director of Community Economic Development


Jamie Lynn Anderson Lindley

South Boston

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

Vanesa Livingstone


Richmond County Department of Social Services Director


Craig McCroskey


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


Angela McPhaul


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


New College Institute, Executive Director


Rhett Weiss


DEALTEK, Ltd, Chairman & CEO


Alex White


Town of Luray Councilman


Kendra Wood


Rappahannock Community College, Dean of Strategic Enrollment Management

Dr. Terrence M. Wood

Greensville County

Greensville County Director of Human Resources

2022 VRLI Alumni

2022 VRLI Cohort Members & Virginia Rural Center Board Members at Graduation

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

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