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November 2018

GREENSVILLE/EMPORIA DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES

LOCAL BOARD MEETING

The Greensville/Emporia Department of Social Services Administrative Board will hold its regular meeting Thursday, November 15th, 2018, at 3:30 p.m. The meeting will be held at the Greensville/Emporia Department of Social Services located at 1748 East Atlantic Street.

GREAT OPPORTUNITIES IN TECHNOLOGY AND ENGINEERING CAREERS (GO-TEC) GRANT

GO TEC PROGRAM COORDINATOR

FOR THE EASTERN REGION LOCATED AT SOUTHSIDE VA COMMUNITY COLLEGE

#R0001

Please visit the employment page of our web site at http://www.dcc.vccs.edu/Employment/employment.htm for details.

Danville Community College is committed to becoming a model higher education institution for diversity and inclusion and invites multicultural professionals from all backgrounds to contribute to its aspiration for building an inclusive community where everyone is given equal opportunity to reach their full potential.  Employment will be contingent upon the results of a background check.         

Vicki Jean Lounge

On the 2nd of November, following a stroke, Emporia resident, Vicki Jean Lounge, was called to her Lord. She was 62.

Vicki was born in Houston, Texas on May 31st, 1956, to her loving parents, Mother, Christine Brannon nee Pearson, of Valentines,VA, and her father, Thomas Burns Brannon of Houston, TX.

Vicki had innumerable accomplishments during her life. Amongst some of her proudest achievements, her 22 years of service with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NASA. She began as a secretary in the Astronaut office, quickly moving up in rank through her meritorious service and dedication, ending her career as Facilities Manager of AOD, in Ellington Air Field, Pasadena, Texas. She served her government, her family, and future generations through her passion for Aerospace exploration, expansion, and safety. Vicki took great pride in her country’s accomplishments. Vicki was a lifetime member of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, volunteering her time as a member of the “Horsepitality” Commitee. She loved the Rodeo, with its pageantry and positive effects on the state she loved so dearly. The live music, one of her deepest and most abiding passions, was something she shared with all of her family and friends. She would arrange for tickets to shows, making gifts of her time and effort to all who wanted to attend a George Strait or Selena concert, as she put it herself, “dance like no one is watching, and then hope they sing along...” She participated in community events, instilling through action community spirit, state pride, and many family memories were made that will live on in everyone who knew her. Perhaps more than any other achievement, Vicki was a mother. She was known lovingly as “Mimi” to her five granddaughters. Her deep bond with her children and grandchildren is perhaps the greatest testament to her character and life. Two generations have thrived under her tender and compassionate maternal care. She was a mother and Mimi first, instinctively,and without reserve. The loss of such a bastion of love leaves her children bereft, but for the knowledge of her goodness and its guarantee of her place in Heaven. Vicki lost many close family members and friends in her life, and with a life so well lived, her surviving family know she is resting happily with a Loving God, her father, brother, and many friends. It is with regret and grief that we say farewell to her, but the gratitude and hope in our hearts, the eternal flame of love she lit in us will keep us warm until we are all joined again. To have had You, Daughter, Mother, Mimi, Friend, was an honor and blessing. You are etched on our innermost selves. We grieve because we love.

Vicki was preceded in death by her brother, John Eric Brannon, her father, Thomas Burns Brannon, and her children’s father, Mark Joseph Spenla. She lost many friends before their time, Diana, Pat, Jeannie, and others. She is survived by her mother, Christine Rivas of Emporia, VA, her son, Marcus Ian Spenla, his wife, Tiffany Spenla, daughter Lauren Jean Woodruff, and her husband Jason. Her precious granddaughters, Brittany Erica Ann, Madison Faith, Meadow MacKenzie, Ivey Nichole, and Evelyn Virginia. Vicki will remain in the hearts of her family,with her ashes to be placed according to her wishes. The family appreciates the condolences and kindness of her friends and neighbors after this sudden loss.

Brunswick Academy Vikings Girls Volleyball

The Vikings went 9-3 in conference play this year taking the VCC conference championship home.

Awards:

All-Academic: Hannah Waller

1st Team All-Conference: Sarah-Olivia Temple, Hannah Waller, Naomi Sadler

2nd Team All-Conference: Allie Pope

All Tournament: Olivia Combs

VCC Coach of the Year: Ken Warf

2018 Riparian Woman's Club Christmas Home Tour Features the Renner Home

The Riparian Woman’s Club 16th Christmas Home Tour is pleased to have the home of Mary Ann Renner on tour this year. Mary Ann Renner extends a warm holiday welcome into her charming one-story three-bedroom ranch style home built in 2017 and located at 502 River Road, Emporia.

Upon entering, the great room is furnished with comfortable seating and immediately the feeling of the holiday season abounds with Christmas decorations. Mary Ann has a talent for decorating and it will be evident throughout the home. The dining/kitchen area is large and decorated beautifully for the season. Her collection of ceramic roosters and wall hangings are shown off here. She is very proud of her grandmothers antique ninety-year old Helpmate sewing machine. The dining table and chairs and the china hutch were hand painted by her friend. One will notice the unique kitchen island, previously an entertainment center and now a creation by Mary Ann. She knows how to make something old become something new.

    

There is one very special bedroom in the home and it is granddaughter Ellie’s room. The white furniture and the touches of pink speak to a little seven-year old girl. Mary Ann refers to the master bedroom as the Williamsburg Room. She grew up in Williamsburg and has a warm spot in her heart for the colonial area. All the furniture and some of the pictures are from Williamsburg.

Mary Ann loves Christmas and is particularly proud of her “Jim Shores” collection.

Others whose homes on tour are John and Jenny Holtkamp, Mark and Wendi Simmons,  Fortsville, owned by David and Jessica Yoder and the home of  Ken Newcomb and Steve Smith.

Tickets are $13.00 and may be purchased at the E-G Chamber of Commerce, Peanut Patch, in Courtland, any Riparian member or by calling 434-594-4369.

“We Don’t Know”

Yes we know not the condition
of our relatives and friends
a sneeky peek at hear say
is where our knowledge ends.
 
I saw a friend the other day
I had not seen for a while
when I told him of my problems
all he did was smile.
 
Yes it seemed that in our time away
he encountered much of the same
the only thing different I do recall
was the doctors and hospital name.
 
You see the most have problems
as the days of life go on
so be careful before you start singing
that feel sorry for me song.
 
I’ve seen this more and more since then
so more cautious I try to be
yes the person who might look quite well
could be hurting more than me.
 
Now looks can be deceiving
so be careful what you might say
yet it seems to me it is quite safe
to part with “have a nice day.”

Roy E. Schepp

Technology Event Focus on Women

Anthony Putorek (left) Senior Lead Workforce Development Program Manager for Microsoft is shown with Shanelle Toone, a speaker for the Career Options Event.

Anthony Putorek (left)  Senior Lead Workforce Development Program Manager for Microsoft is shown with Brenda Cross, one of the speakers for the Career Options for Women Interested in Technology Event planned for November 13.

Southside Virginia Community College will sponsor an event “Career Options for Women Interested in Technology” on Tuesday, November 13, 2018 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Lake Country Advanced Knowledge Center located at 118 East Danville Street, South Hill, VA 23970.  The event will feature dinner at 5:30 p.m. and a panel discussion at 6 p.m. 

The members of the panel are women working in the Information Technology Industry.   Brenda Cross, is a Microsoft scholar and intern working as a data center technician locally, and Shanell Toone, is a cabling technician for IES at the Microsoft Data Center.  These women will offer insight into the program offered through SVCC and career opportunities available for women in this industry.   There will be an overview of career options in the computer and technology fields including Datacenter Networking, Computer Desk Help, Computer Support Specialist, Graphic Design and others. 

Other speakers will include Kathy Brown with Microsoft, Amanda Twisdale with Perspecta, Judy Green with Century Link, Ashley Barrett with Red Hat and moderator Kelly Arnold.   

Please sign up by contacting Kelly Arnold at 434-955-2252 or Kelly.arnold@southside.edu.

NCCER Careers and Construction Month

Careers and Construction Month, recognized in October, is a nationwide celebration that provides recognition of the career opportunities that exist in the construction industry. It is led by the National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) and its Build Your Future initiative to increase public awareness and inspire the next generation of craft professionals.

With shortages of craft professionals across the country, now is the time to promote construction careers in every state. Recognizing October as Careers in Construction Month generates publicity for the construction industry and helps promote career opportunities to individuals who may not have otherwise considered construction as a career choice.

GCHS Career and Technical Education Department Trade and Industry classes and instructors recognized Careers and Construction Month with a series of activities during the week of October 26- November 2, 2018.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018 the Annual Careers and Construction Professional Development Meeting was held in the GCHS Eagles' Cafe. The event included business and industry partners from the Emporia –Greensville community, local city and county government officials, school division administration and the faculty of GCHS.  Highlights of the event were Proclamation Presentations by Takisha Carr, representative from the office of Delegate Roslyn Tyler, 75th District and Beverly Howell, representative from the office of Mayor Mary Person, City of the Emporia.  Recognitions were made by Tyee Mallory, Outreach Director from the office of United States Senator Tim Kaine. The speaker for the event was Mr. Jordan Gregory Doyle, Greensville County High School Class of 2010 alumni. He is a graduate of Norfolk State University with an associate degree in architectural drafting and Bachelor of Science degree in building and construction technology.

Mr. Doyle was a completer of the drafting program at Greensville County High School (GCHS). Dual enrollment credits earned at GCHS allowed enabled him to earn an associate degree at Norfolk State University (NSU) after 1 year.  He made the cover of the advertisement brochure for the building construction technology program for the University. Additionally, while attending NSU, Mr. Doyle was granted an opportunity to assist with the redesign of the Chrysler Hall (museum) in Norfolk, Virginia.  The remodeling project that he and his classmate completed as interns was estimated at approximately $6 million dollars. It was with this internship he was fortunate in having his name placed on a plaque on the museum walls at Chrysler Hall.  As a NSU student, he was also afforded opportunities to work on design projects for multiple business by performing completion jobs for blue prints, ramps, steps, doors, and windows throughout Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Virginia Beach.

After graduation in May 2014, Mr. Doyle obtained a job with Architectural Graphing Industries, in Virginia Beach, VA, where he was a designer and framer with the illumination of signage from top to bottom to include LED lighting. He was involved in the development of signs from start to finish:  start of a design, design approval, running the illumination lighting with quality assurance completion, loading of the sign being delivery and watching the sign depart for display at businesses. He designed signage for Hertz, Firestone, Mercedes, Lincoln, and Nissan.

Currently, Mr. Doyle is employed by Team Fishel, a contracting agency for Dominion Energy, as a distribution designer. He designs OH power lines to run underground to provide power to homes throughout Eastern Virginia.  This important work involves designing power lines, calculating loads and the voltage that is required to provide power to homes in order to transition from power lines on light poles above ground to power lines beneath the ground.

GCHS was excited and proud to celebrate Careers and Construction Month with one of their own, Mr. Jordan Doyle.

Alumni in the Spotlight

By Dr. Al Roberts

One of the most gratifying aspects of my position as President of Southside Virginia Community College is receiving feedback from former students and hearing their stories. SVCC’s first class, which graduated in 1973, consisted of 11 students. The numbers have grown significantly since then, exceeding one thousand in each of the past six years. So far, we’ve accrued more than twenty thousand alumni.

Every week SVCC shines the spotlight on one of these alumni by posting a story about his or her accomplishments on our website. We also mention them on message boards at both main campuses and post the information in hallways as an encouragement to current students. I’d like to tell you about some of these amazing people.

Chris, a Chesterfield native, is an alum of SVCC’s Diesel Technician Training Program. He says, “I obtained a job with Carter Machinery within two weeks of my graduating from the program and have been there for seven-plus years. My income has doubled in that time and I am loving my job.”

Melody earned an Associate of Applied Science in Data processing from SVCC. After graduating, she was hired as an Administrative Assistant by the Commonwealth Regional Council, which serves five counties. Melody now serves as the Council’s Executive Director.

Jamall, who hails from Blackstone, graduated from SVCC’s Power Line Worker program. He currently works for Southside Electric Cooperative and recently competed in the Gaff-n-Go Lineman’s and Equipment Operation Rodeo.

Tara, who graduated from Halifax County High School, pursued a nursing credential through SVCC’s Practical Nursing program. She reports, “Through my training at SVCC, I obtained a good, steady job that I have been employed at for fifteen years!”

LaWanda, a Lawrenceville native, earned an Associate of Applied Science in Human Services along with a Career Studies Certificate in Substance Abuse Counseling. She currently works as a program manager for parents and teachers and serves as a mentor. “My experience at SVCC was awesome and inspiring,” LaWanda says. “I felt I could go out into the world and do great things.”

If you’d like to read more about these and other former students featured in the Alumni Spotlight, visit Southside.edu.

Then, as your family and friends gather this year to give thanks for life’s blessings, would you do me a favor? Would you ask if anyone has a story to share about the ways SVCC may have helped them pursue their academic or workforce training goals? And, if you think anyone’s story should be shared with the whole community, please let me know. Send your Alumni Spotlight suggestions to me at al.roberts@southside.edu or call 434-949-1000.

Dr. Al Roberts is president of Southside Virginia Community College, an institution of higher learning that provides a wide variety of education opportunities to a diverse student population within a service area that spans ten counties and the city of Emporia. He can be reached via email at al.roberts@southside.edu.

2018 4-H Youth Masquerade Dance Highlights

On Friday, October 26, 2018, Greensville/Emporia 4-H hosted a Youth Masquerade Dance (Halloween Themed) at Greensville Country Ruritan Club. Approximately 60 youth and teens from Greensville/Emporia were in attendance. We would like to sincerely thank Greensville County Ruritan Club​ for allowing us to host our event at the clubhouse and for allowing us to use their facility. We would also like to thank Greensville County Sheriff's Office for watching out for us over the course of the night to ensure our youth had a fun and safe night! Also, a huge thank you goes out to adult volunteers and the Greensville/Emporia 4-H Teen Club members for serving as teen leaders during the dance and helping to decorate for the event. Everyone had a wonderful time dancing the night away and making memories with new and old friends.

Greensville/Emporia 4-H is open to all community youth between the ages of 5-19 and their families. 4-H is America’s largest youth development program, which empowers nearly six million young people across the United States with skills to lead for a lifetime. The majority of local 4-H youth development programs are offered at a low-cost or are free-of-charge. Greensville/Emporia 4-H offers youth the opportunity to become positive role models in their community, teen leaders and good citizens, while learning how to cook, eat healthy, exercise, care for animals, care for the environment, participate in 4-H shooting sports, and much more! Contact 4-H Youth Development Extension Agent, Hannah Parker, at 434-348-4223 or hdp2513@vt.edu to learn more about local 4-H activities.

For more photos from the event, please check out our Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/EmporiaGreensville4H

Reini Maryland and Jelissia Johnson smile for a photo before heading out to the dance floor. Pictured (left to right): Reini Maryland and Jelissia Johnson

New 4-H friends, Talynn Robinson (left) and Isaiah Williams (right), have fun dancing together and celebrating Halloween at the Masquerade Dance. Pictured (left to right): Talynn Robinson and Isaiah Williams

Trick or Treat? These ladies were ready for Halloween! Pictured from left to right: Jordanne Morgan and Hailey Sowards

Several youth stop to take a photo with friends during the 4-H Masquerade Dance. Pictured from left to right: Mandy Johnson, Jaylen Easley (front), Cashlyn Meade, Jadeyn Mobley, Hailey Sowards, Lenleigh Cifers, Jekya Fields, and Malina Wilson

    

Fun on the dance floor

Interior Department to Commemorate Four Hundred Years of African-American History

Fifteen Federal Commission Members Appointed to Lead the Anniversary Commemoration in 2019

WASHINGTON - U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke today announced the appointment of a 15-member commission to coordinate the commemoration of the 400-year anniversary of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans to the English colonies in 1619.

The 400 Years of African-American History Commission, established by Congress on January 8, 2018, will plan, develop, and carry out programs and activities throughout the United States to recognize and highlight 400 years of African-American contributions. The bill had bipartisan support, and included sponsors from 23 States and the District of Columbia.

“I am honored to appoint this group to oversee such an important milestone in African-American history,” said Secretary Zinke. “As with President Trump’s recent designation creating Camp Nelson National Monument, as well as with the five historic sites designated into the African American Civil Rights Network this past year, this commission will help expand the understanding and appreciation of all facets of African-American history and culture.”

Commission members, many of whom are leaders in the African-American history community, are appointed by the Secretary to serve for the life of the commission, through July 1, 2020. The Secretary received recommendations from governors, members of congress, civil rights and historical organizations, and the Smithsonian Institution. Support for the commission will be provided by the National Park Service. The new commission members include:

  • Mr. Terry E. Brown, Superintendent, Fort Monroe National Monument, National Park Service, Virginia
  • Mr. Lonnie Bunch III, Founding Director, Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture; former President, Chicago Historical Society; Former Associate Director for Curatorial Affairs, National Museum of American History, Washington, D.C.
  • Mr. Ron Carson, Founder, Appalachian African-American Cultural Center; Black Lung Program Director, Stone Mountain Health Services, Pennington Gap, Virginia
  • Ms. Kenya Cox, NAACP Kansas State President; Executive Director of the Kansas African American Affairs Commission, Office of the Governor, Wichita, Kansas
  • Reverend Nora “Anyanwu” Cox, Minister and Founder, Holy Spirit Healing Ministry; Retired Nurse; Community Advocate and Activist, Wichita, Kansas
  • Dr. Rex Ellis, Associate Director for Curatorial Affairs, Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture; Former Vice President, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation; Board of Trustees, Fort Monroe Authority, Williamsburg, Virginia
  • Mr. Ted Ellis, Artist and Cultural Historian; Art Ambassador, National Juneteenth Organization, Friendswood, Texas (formerly of New Orleans, Louisiana)
  • Mr. Glenn Freeman, President, Omaha Chapter, Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge, a patriotic, civic organization; retired decorated Air Force Chief Master Sergeant; Omaha, Nebraska
  • Dr. Joseph Green, Jr., Pastor, and Co-Founder Antioch Assembly; Founder/CEO, Josiah Generation Ministries; Founder, The 2019 Movement, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
  • Mr. Hannibal Johnson, Attorney, Author, and Independent Consultant specializing in diversity and inclusion/cultural competence issues and non-profit governance, Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • Mr. Kenneth Johnson, CEO, Johnson, Inc., Richmond-based marketing and communications firm;  Board of Trustees, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, Virginia
  • Mr. Bob Kendrick, President, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, Kansas City, Missouri
  • Mr. George Martin, Managing Partner, McGuireWoods law firm, Richmond office; Member, 2019 Commemoration (VA) Steering Committee, Richmond, Virginia
  • Dr. Myron Pope, Vice President for Student Affairs, University of Central Oklahoma; Adjunct Instructor, Department of African and African-American Studies, The University of Oklahoma; Advisory Board Member, Foundation for Oklahoma City Public Schools, Edmond, Oklahoma

“Fort Monroe plays a significant role as the site of the first arrival of enslaved Africans in English North America and later, a safe haven for freedom seekers during the American Civil War,” said Superintendent Brown. “During this anniversary we are honored to lead the conversation about the resilience and contributions of African Americans, including the impact that slavery and laws that enforced racial discrimination had on the United States.”

The commission is expected to begin meeting later this year and begin to encourage civic, patriotic, historical, educational, artistic, religious, economic, and other organizations to come together to participate in anniversary activities.

Ground Broken for new SVCC Learning Resources Center

Those “breaking ground” for the new building at Southside Virginia Community College's Christanna Campus are (Left to Right) Darren Hayes and Keisha Carr, representing Delegate Roslyn Tyler; Bill Thompson of the architectural firm Thompson and Litton; Senator Frank Ruff; Elizabeth Sharrett, Chair of SVCC Local Board; Dr. Al Roberts, SVCC President; Barbara Jarrett-Harris, Chair of the Brunswick County Board of Supervisors; Robbie Pecht, President of the SVCC Foundation Board; and Brandon Spencer, Executive Vice President for Kenbridge Construction.

Since construction is underway on the new, two-level Student and Learning Resources Center on the Christanna Campus of Southside Virginia Community College in Alberta, the College Local Board moved the official groundbreaking October 24, 2018 inside as a symbolic celebration of the new structure. The 45,000 square foot, 12-million-dollar building will be home to the relocated library and will have a performance space, food service area, beautiful student study and lounge areas, a workout room for students and employees and a welcome area. It will also house a career center, a veteran’s center, a credentialing center, and an IT networking and security training laboratory. Existing services to be relocated to the facility include student services, financial aid, admissions and records, and IT Services. The Ground Breaking ceremony was held during the annual board event that included many area partners who work to help SVCC meet its goals. The building is scheduled to be completed in early 2020.

City Voters Demand Change, County Voters Happy With Status-quo

Both of the incumbents in City Council Districts One and Seven have been unseated.

Rev. Clifton Threat easily won his race against long term City Council Member Carolyn Carey. Carey, who had previously indicated that she would not run lost to Threat 171-133.

In District 7 Yolanda Hines narrowly defeated Mark Mitchell. Mitchell was appointed to fill the term of Debra Dixon, who moved to another community and was ineligible to serve on the City Council here in Emporia.

Both Threat and Hines ran on a platform of Jobs and the Economy. Hines ran as a Democrat, while Threat ran as an independent and was endorsed by the Emporia-Greensville Democratic Committee.

In the race for the Greensville County Board of Supervisors seat left vacant upon the death of Dr. Margaret Lee, William "Bill" Cain is the unofficial winner by a margin of only 10 votes over Richard Pearson, who was also endorsed by the Emporia-Greensville Democrats. Also running in that Board of Supervisors race were recent appointee Jacqueline Jordan (20% vote share) and Andrew Weaver (13% vote share).

In the race for United States Senate, Tim Kaine won reelection over Corey Stewart by a large margin. As the race progressed Stewart released several ads that have been called gear-mongering and pandering. Kaine won statewide by a margin of 15 percentage points. Kaine carried the City of Emporia nearly two-to-one and had a 20 percentage point winning margin in Greensville County.

A. Donald McEachin will return to Washington as the member of the United States House of Representatives for the Fourth Congressional District. While the margins of victory in the city and county were very similar to those posted by Senator Kaine, nearly two-to-one and 20 percentage points respectively, the statewide margin of victory was nearly 20 percentage points.

All of the election night results are unofficial until the Wednesday canvass and certification by the local Boards of Election. Given the modern methods of voting, these unofficial results are unlikely to change.

Newcomb-Smith House on Christmas Tour

The Riparian Woman’s Club is excited to include the home of Ken Newcomb and Steve Smith on the Christmas Home Tour to be held on Friday, December 7th and Saturday, December 8th. It is a home that many locals are familiar with and will be thrilled to see all the antiques throughout the home. It is located at 208 Church Street.

Sometimes referred to as the “Tillar House,” or the “Virginia Green House,” the two story, brick colonial house situated on the northeast corner of Church and Ingleside streets, was built in 1928 by William T, Tillar, Jr. and member of a prominent Emporia family. From what can be determined, the original home had four rooms downstairs, four rooms upstairs, three and a half bathrooms and a full, walk-out basement. In the 1940’s, Mr. Tillar added a two story addition to the back of the house. The top story of the addition, which is on the same level as the main floor of the original dwelling, is a large, eat-in kitchen with a walk-in pantry, laundry closet and half bath. The bottom story is a single car garage accessible from Ingleside Street, and is open to the basement.

In the 1990’s, another two story addition was added to the back of the previous addition by Virginia Green, a former Zigfield Follies girl who owned the house at that time. The upper level of this addition is a large bedroom and bathroom.  A recreation room is below.

The present day home, purchased in 2011 by current owners, Steve Smith and Kenny Newcomb, features four bedrooms, each with its own bathroom, formal living and dining rooms, a family room, an eat-in kitchen, recreation room, two additional half baths, an office, a garage and a basement.

    

The interior of the home is eclectically decorated with a mixture of old and new furnishings of different styles and materials collected over the past thirty years by the owners.  When entering the home through the front door, the formal dining room is accessed through the French doors to the left. Featured here is a large, leaded crystal chandelier purchased in Germany by its original owner. Displayed in the china cabinets are many pieces of Noritake and Occupied Japan china, Waterford crystal and silver.

To the right, is the formal living room. The focal point of the room is the cherry baby grand piano. Built-in shelves, a serpentine curio cabinet, and the fireplace mantel display many interesting objects, books and lamps, many of which are vintage. Many family photographs and an original oil painting can also be found here. French doors next to the fireplace lead out to the columned screened porch which runs the depth of the original part of the house.

Toward the back of the house and to the left is the family room, a rectangular shaped room with a three-sided bump-out. The décor here is oak, leather and iron. A stained glass window set into the sixteen inch thick wall separating the family room and kitchen gives an added touch of color. Some of the artwork on the walls here are prints by local artists.

The remaining two rooms on the main floor of the house are the large eat-in kitchen and the master bedroom. Shelves in the kitchen display more objects collected over the years: figurines, cookie jars, decanters, and even an old juke box controller. A door at the back of the kitchen leads to the master bedroom, a large room with its own bathroom and walk-in closet. The room is decorated with a mix of antique and traditional style furniture.

Ken and Steve look forward to showing you their beautifully decorated home. A must see.

Others whose homes on tour are Mary Ann Renner, John and Jenny Holtkamp, Mark and Wendi Simmons, and Fortsville, proprietors, David and Jessica Yoder.

Tickets are $13.00 and may be purchased at the E-G Chamber of Commerce, Peanut Patch in Courtland, any Riparian member or by calling 434-594-4369.

Saturday Auction Could Be Record Breaker

Potential to be the city’s largest ever storage auction

EMPORIA, VA – An upcoming auction at Emporia Storage could produce a record number of units for sale, marking the most ever auctioned in the city in a single day.

The treasure hunt is on as Emporia Storage has a unit auction scheduled at its three facilities in the city beginning at 10 a.m. on , Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018. Climate-controlled units are also expected to be included. A common thought among seasoned storage unit buyers is that climate-controlled units can contain higher-quality items that the owner felt deserved weather protection. While that cannot be guaranteed in this auction, it is often true.

The auction will begin at Emporia Storage office headquarters at 315 West Atlantic Street, Emporia, VA 23847, next to BB&T, then move to the units on East Atlantic Street across from Georgia Pacific and finish up at its third location at 623 South Main Street across from 7-11.

Current expectations are that this auction will see more units sold than ever before in one day at Emporia Storage or anywhere in the city. Multiple units will be auctioned. The exact number of units will not be available until the day before the auction, but current trends are predicting several dozen at least. During this cash only sale, the belongings of delinquent storage units are auctioned off to the highest bidder to recoup the loss of rental fees.

Gates open at 9 a.m. for registration. The auction begins at 10 a.m. In this absolute auction, units will be sold "as is, where is" and contents must be removed by the winning bidder by 6 p.m. that day. A 15% buyers’ premium will apply. Please bring your own locks, as you are responsible for security of your units upon winning the bid.

The auction will be conducted by Carla Cash Harris, Emporia, Va., (434) 594-4406, VA License # 2907004352, a member of the Virginia Auctioneers Association. For more information, call Carla or Emporia Storage at (434) 634-2919.

Jackson-Feild Children Conduct Breast Cancer Walk

The residents of Jackson-Feild Behavioral Health Services conducted an annual Breast Cancer Walk for the past five years. This year the event was held on October 30th.

Students in the on-campus Gwaltney School studied in advance the impact and effects of breast cancer has on women’s health. They prepared posters that were posted around the campus on this topic.

Some of the children’s lives have been touched by breast cancer and their posters were more personal.

Residents and staff gathered on a bright, crisp October morning to walk around the circular drive around the campus several times. 

Funds were raised which were donated to help women who are suffering from this dreaded disease.

VSU Receives $200,000 From USDA to Help Socially Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers

Virginia State University (VSU) will receive $200,000 in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to help socially disadvantaged and veteran farmers and ranchers (SDVFR) in the state. The funding is part of $9.4 million in grants announced on October 12 by Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. 

The Small Farm Outreach Program (SFOP), which is part of Cooperative Extension at VSU, supports SDVFR by equipping them with the tools and skills needed to make informed decisions in owning and operating profitable farm businesses.

“We’re grateful for the funding support from USDA. We will use the funding to continue our training and outreach efforts to help socially disadvantaged and veteran farmers and ranchers build successful and sustainable businesses,” said SFOP Director William Crutchfield.  

The grant money will be used to support an array of the SFOP’s programming such as workshops, conferences, field days and farm tours, as well as the one-on-one training that the SFOP provides to SDVFR located in areas from the Northern Neck to the South West region of Virginia where there is a high concentration of SDVFR. The grant will enable them to provide support to an additional 10 counties in southwest Virginia bringing the total to 74. 

Funds will also be used toward a new high tunnel project that will be completed in early spring 2019 and two mobile demonstration units. Both projects also support training and education of SDVFR. Yet another important SFOP initiative is to create awareness and increase participation by SDVFR in USDA farm programs. 

This USDA funding is available through its Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers Program (also called the 2501 Program) managed by the USDA Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement (OPPE). The 2501 Program was created through the 1990 Farm Bill. In a release, Secretary Purdue said, “The 2501 grants ensure veterans and underserved farmers and ranchers are well positioned to start their careers in agriculture and continue to give back to the American people. These resources will help strengthen the American economy and provide assistance for those who need it most.”

VSU’s Small Farm Outreach Program aims to encourage and assist limited-resource, socially disadvantaged and military veteran farmers and ranchers to own, maintain and operate farms and ranches independently, to participate in agricultural programs and improve their overall farm management skills. The SFOP provides outreach and assistance activities in production management, financial management, marketing, available USDA farm programs and other areas to increase farm profitability and promote sustainability. The program provides educational programming in approximately 74 Virginia counties, which have the highest concentrations of limited-resource, socially disadvantaged and veteran farmers in the state. For more information, visit https://www.ext.vsu.edu/small-farm-outreach-program/.

Extension is a joint program of Virginia Tech, Virginia State University, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and state and local governments. Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.

Clara Inez Whitby

Clara Inez Whitby, 66, of Emporia, passed away Friday, November 2, 2018. She was the daughter of the late Lonzie and Clara Tomlin and was also preceded in death by her younger brother, William “Popeye” Tomlin for whom she was loving primary caregiver during his lifetime.

Inez is survived by her husband, Richard E. Whitby, Sr.; son, Richard Whitby, Jr.; daughter, Mary Lou Whitby Phelps (Craig); grandsons, Jonathan Taylor Whitby and Dalton Camm Whitby and his mother, Rhonda Wells Fitchett; granddaughters, Dallas Morgan Phelps and Savannah Nicole Phelps; god-daughter, Adrienne Doyle and two brothers, Willie “Tiny” Tomlin and Temple Tomlin.

The family will receive friends 6-8 p.m. Monday, November 5 at Owen Funeral Home, 303 S. Halifax Rd, Jarratt, Virginia where the funeral service will be held 2 p.m. Tuesday, November 6. Interment will follow at Greensville Memorial Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude’s Place, Memphis, TN, 38105 or through their website, www.stjude.org.

Jerry Semones

Jerry Semones, our beloved husband, father and grandfather “crossed the bar” October 31, 2018.  The poem “Crossing the Bar” by Lord Tennyson expressed his feelings of final departure.  He is survived by his wife of 61 years Delores (Dede); daughters Angela Adams (Johnie), Sarah Semones (Kenny), Mary Ligon (Benny); grandchildren Logan Adams, Mary Katherine Pratt, Laine Elliott,  William Pratt and his beloved dog Sophie.  His family was his greatest love and pride.

Jerry was born in Pulaski, Virginia to James Guy Semones and Ella Jane Williams Semones on February 5, 1939 and raised in Wytheville, Virginia.  He graduated from East Tennessee State University and started working for Sussex County Schools in 1961 as a teacher and coach.  He later became the director of instruction, and in 1969, after the untimely death of William J. Mayes, he became the youngest public school superintendent in the state of Virginia at the age of 30.

He had a wonderful career and with William J. Story (Assistant Superintendent) and Herbert Winn (Director of Instruction) focused his efforts at open governance, recruiting excellent personnel, improving academics, and establishing a first-class sports program.  Jerry’s proudest achievement was implementing desegregation in the Sussex County school system.  Jerry was also active in promoting education at the State level.  Another of his achievements was working closely with the state superintendent to facilitate the passage of legislation prohibiting corporal punishment in the public schools.

Jerry was a man of all seasons and a true gentleman who always saw the best in people.  Jerry was an active member of the Emporia Country club for 57 years.  He loved the game of golf where he had been a scratch player and enjoyed playing the 19th with his buddies.  He loved to bird hunt, and he traversed many miles with his friend Herb Winn through the cut-overs in Sussex County.  Jerry was an avid reader of history and politics.  He also loved to socialize with his friends often hosting Wednesday night dinners at the Harrell’s Mill Pond cabin.

The family would like to thank all his care givers for their compassionate care.  At Jerry’s request, there will not be a service.  Instead, the family will host a ‘celebration of life’ at a later date.   In lieu of flowers, a donation to the Jarratt Volunteer Fire Department would be welcome. 

Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.owenfh.com.

HINES FOR CITY COUNCIL – DISTRICT 7

To the Editor:

Election season is in full throttle and we are less than 30 days to Election Day and some major decisions are at hand!

On behalf of the City of Emporia and Greensville County Democratic Committee I write in full support of the candidacy of Mrs. Yolanda Hines for City Council in District 7.  District 7’s representative resigned her seat on Council after many months of living outside the city and ultimately moving to be near her new job.  This resignation left a vacancy and thusly it brings us to an election to be held this November 6, 2018 to fill that vacancy.

Fortunately for our friends and neighbors in District 7 they will finally have a Council Member that will represent them fairly and one which will unequivocally have their best interest at heart!  Rarely do you see a candidate rise to the top that gets it…and Yolanda Hines GETS IT!  As a member of our committee she sought our endorsement to run for city council under our banner to effectuate positive change.  In Yolanda’s impassioned plea seeking our support she clearly understands that our city is at a crossroads – we either idly watch as our city folds with ever increasing water bills, “shell games” of devaluing property assessments while increasing property taxes, as well as decreasing city service.  OR…the city council and its leaders can “take the bull by the horns” and address the city’s need for stronger and more frequent efforts to spur on Economic Development efforts.  Instead of discourse over disrespecting fellow citizens and calling them belittling names she believes that it is time to try regular and persistent intelligent conversations during each and every city council meeting about recruiting employers with jobs that can pay a living wage and take proactive steps to recruit developers that are willing to invest in our city.  Additionally, we should be encouraging entrepreneurs and small business owners – as we all know a rising tide lifts ALL boats!  When investment is encouraged, new jobs are sought and created, the quality of our schools’ performance increases and in turn the will of future generations to return home and know they are wanted and needed to keep writing the city of Emporia’s future success story!

Mrs. Hines is an ardent supporter for after school and year round recreational opportunities for our children and youth.  She is a firm believer that governments place emphasis on the things which are of the utmost importance to them and for her that emphasis should be greatly shared with the future and hope of our community – our children.  Yolanda is equally as concerned about her fellow citizens in that she puts her money where her mouth is. She has assisted many citizens not only from her district but across the city and county with job searches through her work with head start and her work at Southside Virginia Community College.

There is no one better qualified and suited to stand and fight for this community and its citizens than Yolanda Hines!  She has worked in public service for more than 26 years and truly understands the need to attract new Employers, affordable quality housing and year round youth programs.

Yolanda comes to the table with a wealth of experience and has prepared herself to take on the challenges presented in the city. She has her Bachelors of Science degree in Criminal Justice as well as a Master’s in Business Administration from Averett University. She IS the only candidate that is ready to address the REAL concerns of the city of Emporia’s District 7!!!

I ask on Tuesday, November 6, 2018 that her fellow citizens of District 7 make your way to the fire department and cast your vote for Yolanda Hines, City Council!  The polls open at 6 o’clock in the morning and close at 7 o’clock in the evening – stop by and vote for a Positive CHANGE in the city of Emporia!

Respectfully submitted on behalf of the Emporia-Greensville Democrats,

George E. Morrison, III, Chairman

(Editor's Note: Your letters may not always reflect the views of Emporia News. Letters to the Editor may be sent to news@emporianews.com and must include your name. Letters that may be considered inflamitory in nature will not be published. Do not include profanity, racial ephitets, lewd, demeaning or disparaging comments. Letters may be edited for space, clarity and/or grammar.)

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