Page 1

A Byrd Newspapers Publication

Volume 10, No. 5, February 2010


Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

February 2010

BUSINESS JOURNAL Shenandoah Valley

The Shenandoah Valley Business Journal is a monthly publication of Rockingham Publishing Company, Inc., 231 S. Liberty St., Harrisonburg, VA 22801.

Inside This Issue Focus Section: Hospitality


Valley’s hospitality scene shows mixed signs as hotels see declines yet more are being built and visitation in the area is up . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 3


Editorial Staff

Restaurants find meeting spaces help boost business. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 4

Peter S. Yates

Industry grows increasingly focused on food. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 5

Editor and General Manager: Managing Editor: Alicia Wotring Sisk

Staff writers:

Danielle Fowler Alana Massey

Staff photographers: Michael Reilly Nikki Fox



ä Real Estate by Scott Rogers . . . . . . . . . . .Page 6 ä Marketing by Jim Blair . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 7 ä Investments by Gannon Irons . . . . . . . . .Page 8 ä News To Me by Philip B. DuBose . . . . . . .Page 9

Harrisonburg, Va.

Contact us By mail:

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal P.O. Box 193 Harrisonburg, VA 22803.

By e-mail:

By fax:


By phone:

574-6267 (news) 574-6229 (ads)

On The Cover: Photo by Michael Reilly

Harrisonburg, Va.

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

February 2010


Hospitality Industry Has Its Ups And Downs Visitation Up; Hotels See Some Declines, But More Are Being Built By DANIELLE FOWLER Byrd Newspapers

Despite a tough economy and several feet of snow blanketing the Valley this season, the hospitality industry in Harrisonburg is showing some signs of growth. The Hardesty-Higgins House Visitor Center in downtown Harrisonburg has seen a 56 percent increase in annual visits from 2008 to 2009. “We’re sitting in a very fortunate place with lots of outdoor activities,” said Brenda Black, tourism manager at Harrisonburg Tourism and Visitor Services. “We get a lot of visitors from Bryce, Wintergreen and Massanutten [resorts].” Visitor centers throughout the state also saw an increase. Visitor centers served about 2.1 million people January through October 2009, up about 11 percent from the 1.9 million people served during the same time the previous year, according to the Virginia Tourism Corporation. Despite that increase, hotels in the state have seen a decrease in business. According to Virginia Department of Taxation, statewide lodging taxable sales totaled $1.3 billion from June 2009 to January 2010, a 9 percent decrease from the same period last year. In Harrisonburg, the hotel and motel tax generated $1.5 million in city revenue during the 2008-2009 fiscal year, according to Economic Development Director Brian Shull, a decrease of 5.3 percent from the 20072008 fiscal year. Paul Patel, general manager at the Econo Lodge on East Market Street, said that business was down, but James Madison University and impulse travelers have helped protect the motel from huge revenue losses. “On average, 2009 was down 20 to 25 percent [in room demand] from

Michael Reilly

Yuliya Khrystych, a front desk associate at the Econo Lodge on East Market Street, helps visitor Carl Kinsey of Tennessee, who is doing work at the new Rockingham Memorial Hospital. Travelers connected to the hospital, JMU and growing businesses have helped of fset a general decline in business, area hoteliers say. 2008,” Patel said, “but during the winter months it is [down] more around 30 to 40 percent.” Stacey Friedly, general manager at the Residence Inn on Deyerle Avenue, said that the extended-stay clientele brought in by JMU, the new Rockingham Memorial Hospital and local businesses, such as Rosetta Stone, have kept an “entrepreneurial spirit about the area.” Friedly said that the hotel, which opened July 2, 2009, has been a mode of temporary housing for customers doing business with JMU or relocating to the area. The Econo Lodge has 88 rooms and 11 staff members, and the Residence Inn has 108 rooms and 30 staff members. But even though some Harrisonburg

hotels are seeing declines, more are being built. The Hampton Inn on Covenant Drive opened in fall of 2009 and a Fairfield Inn and Suites is scheduled to open this year, reflecting a 4.9 percent increase in room supply for Staunton and Harrisonburg, according to the VTC. “The fact that [within the past year] three hotels opened in such a short time shows that there is a growing tourism and business traveler market,” Shull said. “[Hotels] have felt the recession with people traveling less, but factors such as JMU growing, the new RMH and local businesses continuing to grow helped soften the blow.”

Contact Danielle Fowler at svbjnews

By The Numbers:  The hotel and motel tax generated $1.5 million in revenue in Harrisonburg during 2008-2009 fiscal year, a decrease of 5.3 percent from the 2007-2008 fiscal year.  Statewide, room demand dropped 2.3 percent, room rates decreased 5.3 percent and occupancy was down 6.2 percent from November 2009 to January 2010, according to Smith Travel Research.  The Harrisonburg and Staunton area saw a 6.3 percent decrease in room demand, a 6.1 percent decrease in revenue and a 10.7 decrease in occupancy rates from 2008-2009, according to the Virginia Tourism Corporation. But, according to the VTC, the area also saw a 4.9 percent increase in room supply.


February 2010

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

Harrisonburg, Va.

Meeting Spaces Boost Business For Area Restaurants By ALANA MASSEY Byrd Newspapers

File Photo by Nikki Fox

Big Brother Jesse Bergey of Harrisonburg plays his Little Brother Aiden Keese, 7, of Dayton in a game of bowling on the Nintendo Wii during a Big Brothers Big Sisters fundraiser at Clementine. Clementine and other area restaurants are becoming a place to meet as well as a place to eat, which owners say helps boost the bottom line.

As small businesses struggle to weather the storm of recession, some restaurants are finding a way to boost business, provide an alternative revenue stream and offer a service to the community all at the same time: by offering meeting space. At Clementine Café, located in downtown Harrisonburg, community events and meetings have been an extension of business since the café opened in February 2008, event and front-of-house coordinator Suzi Carter said.

“When times are harder, extra services go a long way,” said Carter. “We’re doing our part to help by offering a free community space that is separate from the dining room.” Clementine hosts an average of five to seven meetings and events per week, Carter said. The space has a 100-person capacity and guests only pay for service and catering, not for the room itself. Bravo Italian Restaurant located on East Market Street in Harrisonburg, which has a meeting room that holds up to 70 people, has benefited in much See BOOST, Page 9

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

Industry grows more focused on food

Harrisonburg, Va.

Michael O’Fallon is program director and assistant professor of hospitality and tourism management in James Madison University’s College of Business. Here, he answers a few questions about the industry for the Shenandoah Valley Business Journal: Q: How long have you been in the hospitality field, and what have been the biggest changes you’ve seen in the industry during that time? A: I have been in the hospitality industry, or in some way a part of it, since I was 16 years old. That is almost 20 years now. Many changes have occurred during that time. I think the largest changes have been the increase in interest among individuals in culinary arts (food) and wine. In particular, there has been a great shift in the importance of pairing the right food with the right wine. By doing so, this enhances an individual’s dining experience as they each complement each other. In addition, individuals’ interest in wine by itself has increased,

as is evident by the increasing number of wine stores and wine bars. In reference to food, there has been a greater shift toward eating healthier [as well as locally]. … Many individuals want to buy local foods and will pay more for it.

Q: “Hospitality” seems to be a very broad term. What does the industry encompass? A: There are many segments that are a part of it. The segments include: Travel, including airlines, cruise ships, rail, automobiles and buses; lodging (hotels and motels); meetings, conventions and expositions; restaurants; managed services, including food service operations in amusement parks, sporting events, etc., and recreation, such as gaming, amusement parks (beyond foodservice), parks, etc. Q: What kind of formal training is required to work in this industry? Do you think this has changed in the past decade? A: The formal training depends on

which part of the industry an individual is interested in. To become an executive chef, a culinary degree is highly encouraged. To become a wine sommelier, there is an extensive training program in place. In order to work one’s way up the corporate ladder, a degree in hospitality is important … I believe that organizations are valuing hospitality degrees now more than ever. We are interacting with companies who will only interview students for management positions who have graduated from a university with a college degree. Q: Is the industry expected to grow? Is there any segment of the industry that is expected to grow more than others? A: Yes, the industry is expected to grow. It is tough to answer the second question, given our current economic situation. In years past, the food and beverage industry has grown, even in tough economic times. Q: How does hospitality contribute to the economy, nationally and locally?

February 2010


A: The hospitality industry is an important part of the economy on a national, regional and local level. For instance, the entire restaurant industry (as reported from the National Restaurant Association) is expected to reach $580 billion in sales in 2010. This includes 945,000 locations and 12.7 million employees. The restaurant industry happens to be one of the largest privatesector employers. As for the state of Virginia, the total revenue for restaurants in 2009 was projected to reach $11.5 billion. The number of restaurant jobs represented 9 percent of total employment, and there were 13,114 eating and drinking places in 2007. In terms of the state’s economy, “every $1 spent in Virginia’s restaurants generates an additional $1.11 in sales for Virginia’s economy” [according to]. This is only information from one segment (albeit the largest segment) of the hospitality industry. As one can see, the numbers are pretty impressive.

— Interviewed by Danielle Fowler


February 2010

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

Harrisonburg, Va.

Stable Values, Smart Borrowers, Strong Economy Help Valley Homes

Some reports indicate that Americans lost more than $1 trillion in home values during the past three months. When looking at the sum of the last several years, the figures are even more staggering — declining home values across the United States have resulted in trillions of dollars of losses for American homeowners. Yet during this same time period, home values in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County have only been marginally affected. In fact, it wasn’t until 2009 that this area saw any significant decline in median sales price, and then it was only a 5 percent decline. So why and how, in this time of rapidly declining home values, have homes in the central Shenandoah Valley held their value? First, while Harrisonburg and Rockingham County did see a sharp increase in home prices (51 percent increase in median home value between 2003 and 2006), our median sales price started out quite low at $127,700 in 2003 and only increased to $192,983 in 2006. Median sales prices in many other metropolitan areas increased to much higher

Real Estate Scott Rogers levels, leading borrowers to pursue riskier mortgages for their purchases. In areas with significant increases in home values, many homeowners took on risky mortgage programs such as variable rate mortgages, interest-only mortgages or mortgages with a teaser rate. Those with 30-year fixed rate mortgages knew what to expect of their housing payment and likely were able to continue to pay their mortgages, but those with higherrisk mortgages often had trouble keeping up and were foreclosed on. Variable rate mortgages have been somewhat problematic, but not to a great degree because interest rates have remained relatively low for the last several years. Interestonly mortgages have proven to be quite dangerous because the homeowner does

not pay down any principal on their mortgage, and thus does not build up equity in their home absent any appreciation in the market. Mortgages with teaser rates provided for a very low rate (1 percent or 2 percent) for a short time period in order to qualify a home purchaser. These teaser rate mortgages would then reset to a much higher rate after several years, putting the homeowner in financial duress, unable to pay their mortgage. Since home values didn’t rise too drastically in this area, homebuyers did not (in large numbers) feel pressured to obtain risky mortgages with variable or escalating future housing payments. As a result, we have seen a very low number of foreclosures in the central Shenandoah Valley. In 2009, a large portion of homes

on the market in the Winchester area — I have heard as much as 40 percent — were "bank owned" homes — homes that had been foreclosed on. This high number of foreclosures led to rapid decreases in home values, as banks quickly reduced the prices at which they would sell their inventory in order to get those homes off their books. While high foreclosure rates in other metropolitan areas led to declining home values, the very low foreclosure rate in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County has led to relatively stable home values. The Harrisonburg and Rockingham County market has also been greatly protected by its diverse and stable local economy. We have not seen significant job loss during the past five years, which could have put large numbers of homeowners in a position where they had to sell their homes rapidly because they were unemployed or they were moving to another area to find work. Our economy includes jobs from many sectors, and is largely supported by area colleges and universities. It also helps that we have always had very low unemployment rates as compared to other metropolitan areas in the country. Since 2005, the pace of home sales has declined drastically, with only 813 home sales in 2009 compared to 1,669 home sales in 2005. The law of supply and demand would suggest that such a large reduction in demand (a 51 percent decrease) would certainly lead to a drastic decrease in home values. Yet, in the same time frame (20052009), the median home price has shown a net increase from $169,900 to $186,300, a 10 percent increase. While we have seen a 5 percent decrease in home values between 2008 and 2009, our local housing market continues to be amazingly resilient, without any significant shift in home values. While we can’t point to one particular factor that has protected home values in the central Shenandoah Valley, it is highly related to the relatively slow and small increase in home values, the conservative mortgage programs used by homebuyers, our low foreclosure rate and our stable local economy. — Scott P. Rogers, author of, is an Associate Broker with Coldwell Banker Funkhouser Realtors in Harrisonburg.

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal


Seven Steps To Getting Qualified Prospects Harrisonburg, Va.

Do you know a friend with a cabin up in the mountains? How about a hotel room with a nice view? I am suggesting you get away for a day in order to have a great year. You don’t need two weeks and a 50-page report to show how you are going to have a better 2010. Why? Because you wouldn’t even begin such a daunting task. You don’t have the time or energy. So, what do you do? You get away from phones and email and prepare a roadmap in four to six hours and two pages that proves how you can accomplish a better year. Here is the outline of your twopage marketing plan:

1. List Your Marketing Goals

For example: How many new customers? How many new qualified prospects? Profit increase compared to 2009? Increase my mailing list by X percent, etc.

n n n n

February 2010


Marketing Jim Blair

2. What Is Your Marketing Budget?

n Is 5 percent of gross revenue realistic? n Develop a monthly budget — what

can you afford?

3. What Is Your Target Market?

n Market to a narrow slice of the overall market. n Determine characteristics of your ideal customer. n Size, location, residential or commercial, age group, goals, income — maybe even personal characteristics, etc.

4. Know Your Competition


Google your business type. Study the best in your industry.

n What are the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors? n Who is moving into town? Who has the latest technology?

5. Identity And Branding

n n n

What is your primary marketing message and is it clearly expressed? Does your brand evoke an emotional response? How is your business different? Are you pressing that home?

6. Marketing Tactics

n Choose four and do a great job with

each (i.e.: networking, referral program, radio ad, Twitter)

The best marketing tactic is one you will actually do.

7. New Products Or Services

n Offer something new this year. n Repackage or bundle older services. n Add “educational marketing” to

your offer (train instead of sell).

Now, after your day away, you can give yourself a pat on the back. You have completed a marketing effort only a few businesses seriously attempt. You have given your business the maximum opportunity to succeed through good planning. Go back to the office with more peace of mind knowing where this year’s qualified prospects are going to come from. And don’t forget the gift for your friend with the cabin. — Jim Blair is a marketing coach with Blair & Associates. He can be reached at 908-1471, or

Got A Match? Use It To Your Best Advantage 8

February 2010

As the economy recovers, you may find some new opportunities to expand your investment horizons — and one such possibility may be your company’s 401(k) matching contribution. During the depths of the recession, many companies that had offered a 401(k) match reduced or stopped their contribution. But now, more than a third of large employers that suspended their matching contributions plan to restore them during the next few months, according to a survey by Watson Wyatt, a consulting firm. While this development will be welcome news to you if your employer was one of the match-cutters, you can’t necessarily count on getting the same match you did before the recession. Some of the companies surveyed by Watson Wyatt say the size of the new match will vary, based on profits. Previously, the most common formula used by companies was a match of 50 cents on the dollar, up to the first six percent of pay, according to the Profit Sharing/401(k) Council of America. But no matter what size match you are offered, take it. If you don’t contribute enough to your 401(k) plan to earn the

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

Harrisonburg, Va.


self to more risk than you had intended. At least once a year, review your 401(k) carefully, possibly with the help of a professional financial adviser, to make sure your investment mix is still appropriate for your needs.

Gannon Irons match, you are leaving money on the table — money that could be used to help pay for the retirement lifestyle you’ve envisioned. If you do need to adjust your contribution level to earn the match, you might also take the opportunity to make changes to your 401(k) portfolio, as needed. Here are a few ideas to consider:

401(k) can be risky, which is why you should diversify your holdings among the choices available in your plan. While diversification, by itself, cannot prevent losses or guarantee profits, it can help reduce the effects of volatility and give you more opportunities for success.

Avoid Overloading On Company Stock

Your 401(k) holdings should be appropriate for your goals, risk tolerance and time horizon. Yet, during time, and without any action on your part, your portfolio could become “unbalanced.” For example, you might have wanted 20 percent of the value of your 401(k) to go into a particular growth-oriented account. But if this investment increased substantially in price, it may now take up 30 percent of your portfolio, subjecting your-

In a sense, you are already risking a financial asset — your income — when you work for a company, because any company can go through downturns that could affect your livelihood. Consequently, you don’t want to take on additional risk by overloading your 401(k) portfolio with your company stock. Furthermore, too much of any one investment in your


Boost Your Contributions With Each Salary Increase

Every time your salary goes up, try to increase your 401(k) contributions. Because you typically fund your 401(k) with pre-tax dollars, the more you contribute, the lower your taxable income. Plus, your earnings can grow tax deferred, so your money potentially can grow faster than it would if placed in an investment on which you paid taxes every year. By following these suggestions, and by taking advantage of the return of your 401(k) match, you can help maximize the value of your 401(k). And someday, you might be glad you did just that. — Gannon Irons is a financial adviser with Edward Jones in Harrisonburg. He can be reached at 433-4907.

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

Harrisonburg, Va.

February 2010


Communicating During Tough Times Boosts Morale

Communication is essential during tough economic times. This is

the message provided in the January issue of T&D. The article indicates that, while workers are keenly aware of the immense pressures in their bosses’ jobs, they still want the bosses to stay in touch with them. There are several excellent ways for bosses to establish and maintain a strong relationship with employees, including establishing an open forum with employees, communicating both good and bad news to employees, keeping employees apprised of special assignments and learning opportunities that will enable the employee to progress and improving morale through various recognition programs. Communication that’s especially motivating is performance evaluation and feedback. In times when financial rewards are less available, such communication keeps employees engaged and on a career track. Also, this type of communication tends to be a two-way street, an essential criterion of effective communication.

Here’s how to increase your productivity. A common experience for

many workers is to end the workday disappointed about what has been accomplished. Fortunately, this problem can be overcome, and the January 2010 issue of Strategic Finance identifies


from PAGE 4

the same way. Owner Paul Crampton saw the meeting space as a means of boosting business and offering extra services to his customers. “We wanted something, especially during the recession, to add more possibilities to the business,” Crampton said. On average, Bravo Italian Restaurant hosts three to four meetings per week. Booking catered meetings — which includes a charge for use of the room




ing on an item until it has been completed. This can be difficult, so it’s often a good idea to set deadlines that you will be motivated to keep. The fourth activity is tracking, which may be the easiest of the four activities. However, tracking requires effort, so it’s essential that this activity be kept simple, which can be accomplished by relying on a todo list, a tickler list and a calendar. Executing these four activities should enable a person to get things done in a disciplined way.

Today’s manager needs to be “t-shaped.” That’s the recommenda-

four essential activities for doing so. Satisfaction comes from achieving something of value, so the first step is to determine what you value, and focus on achieving those things. It is wise to make a list of these items. The list will likely be too long, so the second activity is to review the items and prioritize them. You cannot do everything on your list, so this step will leave you feeling good about accomplishing the most important ones. The third activity is focus — work-

tion in the January issue of HR Magazine. Using a manager at BP as an example, the article describes the tshaped manager is one who provides superb leadership to his own company, which is the vertical part of the “t.” In addition, he must contribute across the company, and this is the horizontal part of the “t.” This type of manager is very different from the typical “lone star” manager, who tends to focus on only his own performance. A successful “t” manager is focused on units other than his own, knows his own area and knows about other areas, and has the right networks. Unlike in the past, today’s manager has to care about a lot more than his own performance. Consequently, he must contribute individually and collectively.

— generate roughly 20 percent of the restaurant’s revenue, Crampton said. “The price fluctuates depending on the size of the group, the nature of the meeting, and the day and time that the event is taking place,” said Crampton. Generally the cost runs about $150 for a private function, he said, and so far, the meeting room has met his expectations. Lee Ann Jeffer, owner of Organic Grounds in Harrisonburg, has used a meeting space as an extension of business, as well. “It’s a private room that people can use for free,” said Jeffer. “And then, by

making purchases while they’re here, they are supporting a local business.” As more groups utilize their meeting spaces, restaurants are taking extra steps to accommodate people’s needs and style, owners say. At Bravo Italian Restaurant, the space has a stage, multiple sources of lighting and a complete sound system, Crampton said. It is also sound-proof from the dining room. Like Bravo, Clementine’s meeting space is more than just a room. The meeting space has a mediaready TV, PowerPoint capabilities, sur-

— By Philip B. DuBose

Brief summaries from top business publications to help business leaders succeed.

The family is now the company’s focus when it comes to wellness.

Now that companies have gotten employee buy-in on matters of health, they are turning their attention to the employee’s family. As asserted in the Feb. 1 and 8 issue of Business Week, a company doesn’t necessarily reduce its health care costs much when an employee “shapes up” and the other family members fail to follow suit. Consequently, companies with employee wellness programs are now expanding those programs to include the entire family. Aetna is offering employees a $1,200 reward to get their families in its corporate wellness program. J P Morgan is offering family members health coaches. In order to teach kids about portion sizes, IBM began sending employees’ kids special plates featuring cartoon characters. A recent meta-analysis of past studies on cost-saving revealed that, for every dollar spent on such programs, medical costs fall an average of $3.27. Clearly, such programs make a lot of sense given their significant cost-cutting potential, so we should see a lot more of them in the future. — Philip B. DuBose is associate dean and management professor in James Madison University’s College of Business.

round sound speakers, microphones and DJ capabilities, Carter said. There is a vision behind the inclusion of the meeting space at Clementine, Carter said. It was designed so that people can have a free space to host a variety of events and meetings. “It is more than just a room to make money,” said Carter. “We knew from the very beginning that we wanted Clementine to be more than just a restaurant with a dining room.”

Contact Alana Massey at svbjnews

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

10 February 2010

Vehicle Sales

Local Ledger

December 2009

Harrisonburg Rockingham County Page County Shenandoah County Augusta County Staunton Waynesboro

Retail Sales (in millions) November 2009

November 2009 Harrisonburg $83.8 Rockingham County $36.7 Page County $11.7 Shenandoah County $27.9 Augusta County $35.6 Staunton $25.3 Waynesboro $34.8

Harrisonburg, Va.

December 2009 December 2008 Percent Change 44 55 -20.0% 122 129 -5.4% 19 21 -9.5% 70 77 -9.1% 154 132 16.7% 41 33 24.2% 35 33 6.1% Source: Virginia Auto Dealers Association

YTD $968.4 $419.3 $152.0 $329.9 $376.0 $311.8 $406.2

Unemployment December 2009

Harrisonburg Rockingham County Page County Shenandoah County Augusta County Staunton Waynesboro

Source: Virginia Department of Taxation

Dec. 2009 6.1% 5.5% 13.7% 8.5% 6.7% 7.6% 7.6%

Nov. 2009 5.9% 5.3% 11.5% 8.2% 6.1% 7.3% 7.5%

Dec. 2008 4.6% 4.3% 11.8% 5.9% 5.1% 5.9% 7.8%

Source: Virginia Employment Commission

Home Sales December 2009


Rockingham $172,000 $178,450 -3.6 185 198 -6.6

$177,000 $232,500 -23.9 171 184 -7.1




Shenandoah $168,450 $160,000 5.3 158 120 31.7

$151,790 $160,000 -5.1 254 88 188.6

18 25 -28.0

49 44 11.4

29 43 -32.6

18 20 -10.0

18 12 50.0

38 29 31.0

8 9 -11.1

Median Sale Price Dec. ‘09 $152,500 Median Sale Price Dec. ‘08 $187,000 Percent Change -18.5 Average Days on Market Dec. ‘09 191 Average Days on Market Dec. ‘08 183 Percent Change 4.4 Units Sold Dec. ‘09 Units Sold Dec. ‘08 Percent Change

$172,750 $123,700 39.6 130 122 6.6

$151,000 $193,750 -22.1 160 171 -6.4


Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

Harrisonburg, Va.


MOVERS M Former City Mayor Neff Appointed To HEC

Former Harrisonburg Mayor John F. Neff has been sworn in as a new member of the Harrisonburg Electric Commission. Neff, who served as mayor from 1994 to 1996, was appointed to a three-year term on HEC. Neff joins HEC Chairman Dennis L. Snyder, Vice Chairman Peter S. Yates, Secretary W. Neff Price Lineweaver and Treasurer J. Douglas Light. City Council, which names the members of the five-person commission, holds its reorganization meeting in January following a November council election. HEC serves more than 18,000 customers in Harrisonburg.

Mutual Of Omaha Names Hostetter To Roundtable

Andrew T. Hostetter Jr. of Weyers Cave, a sales representative for Mutual of Omaha, has been named to the insurance company’s Sales Leaders Roundtable. Roundtable membership is reserved for the year’s top sales producers within the Mutual of Omaha network. Hostetter joined the company in 1996 Hostetter and works out of the Harrisonburg district sales office of the firm’s Don Lilly Jr. division office, which is based in Roanoke.

Weaver Named To Chamber Board

Chris Weaver of New Market, chief

administrative officer for Lantz Construction Co., has been appointed to the board of directors for the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Chamber of Commerce. Weaver has been an active member of the chamber since joining Broadway-based Lantz Construction in fall 2008. He has served on the chamber’s Public Policies Committee for the past year and currently co-chairs that panel. Before relocating to the central Valley from Frederick County, Md., Weaver was actively involved in that community’s chamber of commerce, Habitat for Humanity and builders association, as well as the Home Builders Association of Washington County. Before joining Lantz Construction, Weaver spent five years in the consulting industry and three years in the real estate development field. Weaver is a 1996 graduate of James Madison University, where he majored in economics with minors in political science and mathematics. He also is a 1999 graduate of Washington & Lee University School of Law.

Pastalove Named GM Of City Cracker Barrel

Scott Pastalove has been named general manager of the Harrisonburg Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Inc. Pastalove has been with the company since 2004, most recently as part of the management team in Harrisonburg. Before joining Cracker Barrel, he had 10 years experience in the restaurant industry. As general manager of the store and restaurant at 121 Pleasant Valley Road, Pastalove will be responsible for all aspects of the day-to-day business.

February 2010 11


Comcast Spotlight To Relocate To Urban Exchange

Comcast Spotlight, which sells advertising for Comcast Cable, plans to relocate from Staunton to Harrisonburg’s downtown by the end of February, said Mike Hendricksen, operations manager for Coldwell Banker Commercial Funkhouser Realtors. Comcast Spotlight is moving its eight employees into a 1,924-square-foot office space at the Urban Exchange on East Market Street.

Farm Credit Collects Toys For Area Children

The Harrisonburg office of Farm Credit and Country Mortgages collected more than 400 toys for local children in December. Farm Credit customers and community members donated some 2,800 toys in 96 counties in Virginia, West Virginia and Maryland. The Farm Credit System is a national network of lending institutions that provide financial and lending services to rural America.

City Receives Grant For Civil War Trail Signs

A $5,000 grant was awarded to Harrisonburg City, Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance, Harrisonburg Tourism and Visitors Services and the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Sesquicentennial Committee for the Civil War Trails Interpretive Signage Program. Three new Civil War Trails markers will be placed near the Harrisonburg Municipal Building, Woodbine Cemetery and Massanutten Regional Library. “These markers will provide visitors and residents alike a greater understanding of the impact of war on a small farming community and its citizens,” said Tourism Manager Brenda Black.


DCCU Grew Loans Outstanding Again

DuPont Community Credit Union grew total loans outstanding for the fourth quarter in a row for 2009. The Waynesboro-headquartered credit union, which operates nine branches in the Central Shenandoah Valley region, reported a 12 percent increase in total loans outstanding compared to the fourth quarter of 2008. Loans totaled $582.4 million at of the end of the fourth quarter, which includes $21 million in real estate loans funded during the fourth quarter. The credit union’s net worth ended the fourth quarter at $62.8 million.

12 February 2010

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal

Harrisonburg, Va.

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal  

Business journal for the central Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.

Shenandoah Valley Business Journal  

Business journal for the central Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.