Roanoke City Public Schools has earned the 2014 Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy. Superintendent Dr. Rita D. Bishop and the Roanoke City School Board were nominated for the award by Virginia Western Community College in honor of their support of the Community College Access Program (CCAP). The award was given at a luncheon ceremony on Tuesday at the Country Club of Virginia in Richmond.
Roanoke City Public Schools values education as an investment in the long-term future of graduates of its two high schools, Patrick Henry High School and William Fleming High School. As a public funding partner of CCAP, Roanoke City Public Schools, with the leadership of Dr. Bishop has been instrumental in establishing and expanding the tuition-assistance program in Roanoke City.
“You are going to get back whatever you contribute to your local community college,” Dr. Bishop said. “It is a lasting investment in your area. Right here locally, we can prove that our community is better because of the workforce development efforts at Virginia Western.”
The Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy luncheon is hosted by the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education (VFCCE) to honor the leading philanthropists from each of Virginia’s 23 community colleges as well as the statewide foundation. This marks the ninth year the awards have been given.
This year’s class of distinguished philanthropy leaders has contributed a combined total of more than $12 million dollars to Virginia’s Community Colleges.
Representatives of Roanoke City Public Schools present at the ceremony included Dr. Bishop; Mr. Todd Putney, School Board Chair; Ms. Suzanne Moore, School Board Vice Chair; and Ms. Mae Huff; School Board member.
In keynote remarks, Virginia Business Higher Education Council Chair W. Heywood Fralin said, “Many believe, including myself, that the community college will be the centerpiece of economic development in each region of the commonwealth for the next several decades. … All philanthropists are interested in their local communities, and I would argue that in today’s world, the local community college should be considered a top priority for philanthropic dollars. Where it happens, regions will thrive, and where it doesn’t, they will struggle.”
Fralin, the 2013 Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy award recipient nominated by Virginia Western, also represented the Horace G. Fralin Charitable Trust, which in 2012 donated $5 million to Virginia Western, primarily to benefit scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering , Math and Health Professions (STEM-H).
During Tuesday’s ceremony, VCCS Chancellor Dr. Glenn DuBois said that the generosity of the two dozen philanthropy leaders, including Roanoke City Public Schools, makes a critical difference in the lives of students and their families as well as in the economic vitality of the commonwealth. “They believe in the knowledge and skills that Virginia’s Community Colleges offer to every Virginian. We thank them deeply for the partnerships that demonstrate the art of giving.”
Recipients of the 2014 Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy:
Blue Ridge Community College - Augusta Health / Sentara RMH Medical Center
Central Virginia Community College - The Sonny Merryman Family
Dabney S. Lancaster Community College - The Alleghany Foundation
Danville Community College - LifePoint / Danville Regional Medical Center
Eastern Shore Community College - Jeff Holland
Germanna Community College - Spotsylvania County
J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College - Metropolitan Health Foundation
John Tyler Community College - The Cameron Foundation
Lord Fairfax Community College - William Holtzman
Mountain Empire Community College - Martha J. Rhoton
New River Community College - Paul and Gary Duncan
Northern Virginia Community College - Volkswagen Group of America
Patrick Henry Community College - Gary and Susan Collins
Paul D. Camp Community College - Smithfield Foods
Piedmont Virginia Community College - Julie Heyward
Rappahannock Community College - The Children of Charles and Elizabeth Ryland
Southside Virginia Community College - Halifax Regional Health System
Southwest Virginia Community College - CONSOL Energy Inc.
Thomas Nelson Community College Sentara Healthcare
Tidewater Community College Robert C. Nusbaum and Linda S. Laibstain
Virginia Highlands Community College - The late C. B. Hale
Virginia Western Community College - Roanoke City School Board
Wytheville Community College - Daniel Copeland
Virginia Foundation for Community College Education - Valley Proteins, Inc.