RD350 - Center for Rural Virginia Annual Report – 2019 - 2020

Executive Summary:

Dear Friends,

The 2019-2020 operating year of the Center for Rural Virginia experienced tremendous success in new partnerships and innovative initiatives for rural Virginia. While the Center’s operations were altered by implications presented by COVID-19, the Center maintained its impact on the economic prosperity of rural Virginia. Through this adversity, over the last year, the Center built upon existing programs, while continuing to foster relationships with new and existing partners, all contributing to accomplishing the Center’s mission of building rural capacity by facilitating the collaboration and creation of coalitions.

The Center focused on continuing its role to serve as an advocate, facilitator, and producer of projects, programs, and collaborative initiatives to enhance rural prosperity. In addition, the Center continued its focus on advocacy and initiatives around priority program areas including: broadband and infrastructure, rural economic development, leadership and community capacity, education and workforce development, access to rural housing, entrepreneurship and small business, and regional assets and opportunities.

Accomplishing its mission, the Center continued existing efforts, as well as took on new initiatives and programs to promote rural prosperity across the Commonwealth. Highlights of the past year include: The Governor’s Summit on Rural Prosperity, the Virginia General Assembly Rural Caucus weekly meetings during the legislative session which the executive director serves as staff for, The Rural Caucus Reception; as well as engaging in many other partnerships and collaborative efforts.

Enclosed in this report, you will find a detailed summary of the Center’s activities throughout the previous year. It has been a great honor to work and meet with many of you as I traveled in-person and virtually around the state visiting rural communities throughout Virginia. It is the dedication and hard work of our board members that make the impact of the Center for Rural Virginia possible. I look forward to another year of innovation, collaboration, and new initiatives to promote and enhance rural Virginia.

Best regards,

Kristie Helmick Proctor
Executive Director