Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission


Commission Elects New Leadership and Approves 19 Funding Requests

Richmond, VA – The Virginia Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission met electronically on Friday, January 8th and selected Mayor of the Town of South Boston, Edward Owens, as the next Chairman of the Commission and Delegate Lashrecse Aird as Vice-Chair. The Commission also acted on 19 funding requests including projects that will expand broadband access, support Virginia’s livestock industry and ensure that the workforces of Southern and Southwest Virginia are prepared to fill job openings as they become available through workforce financial aid grants in partnership with our community colleges.

Tobacco Commission Chairman, Edward Owens said, “It is an honor to be selected for the role of Chairman by the members of the Commission. I would like to thank our outgoing Chairman, Delegate Terry Kilgore, for his leadership and I look forward to continuing to serve with him on the Commission. I would also like to congratulate Delegate Lashrecse Aird on being named Vice-Chair and look forward to working with her as we continue to find new and innovative ways to ensure that the Commission has a positive impact on the communities it serves. Working together, I am certain that the members of the Commission, Commission staff and the localities we serve will continue to bring jobs and investment to Southern and Southwest Virginia for years to come.”

Tobacco Commission Vice-Chair, Delegate Lashrecse Aird added, “I am incredibly honored and excited to serve as Vice-Chair and I look forward to working collaboratively with my colleagues on the commission as we continue to develop durable and innovative economic opportunities. Now more than ever, it is critical that we uplift and empower all communities especially the vibrant regions in the South and Southwest who have been left behind for far too long. As leaders, it is incumbent upon all of us to do the important work of ensuring everyone in the Commonwealth has the tools they need to thrive.”

The Commission also welcomed three new members:

Ms. Coley Jones Drinkwater of Dinwiddie
Mr. Richard T. Hite, Jr. of Kenbridge
The Honorable Thomas Jordan Miles, III of Buckingham

Additionally the Commission gave final approval for 19 funding requests totaling $8,158,290. The total funds to be disbursed break down as follows: $1,309,290 for Southwest Virginia projects, $3,009,000 for Workforce Financial Aid projects and $3,840,000 for a Tobacco Region Opportunity Fund project. The individual approved requests ranged in size from $18,000 to $3,840,000.

The Tobacco Region Revitalization Commission is committed to developing a diverse economy in the regions we serve. The projects approved at this meeting will continue to build on that effort and will help Southern and Southwest Virginia grow and prosper for decades to come.

Contact: Jordan Butler
Telephone: 804-786-7692
Cell: 757-692-0878
Email: jbutler@revitalizeva.org
Website: www.revitalizeva.org