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Workforce & Education

Meeting Future Skills Demand INSIDE: 04 | New Members 06 | Career & Technical Education 09 | Month in Photos 10 | Wow! Worlds of Work 11 | Enter to Win!


EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE Chair John Lamanna Timber Ridge School Chair-Elect Tracy Vosika George Mason Mortgage, LLC Vice Chair John Fox Greenwood Grocery & Deli Treasurer Adrian Taylor YHB Immediate Past Chair Bill North Northstar Consulting Scott Harvard First Bank Gregory Vossler Green Bay Packaging

Cover photo and above photo provided by Bridgeforth Photographics.



04 | Letter from CEO

06 | Feature Story

04 | New Members

06 | Business Column

05 | News & Events

07 | Feature Story

06 | Ribbon Cuttings

10 | Community Feature

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Susan Brooks Navy Federal Credit Union Emily Burner Shenandoah University Charles Daniels Integrus Holdings, Inc.

09 | Month in Photos

Top of Virginia Regional Chamber Sponsors

Jim Guisewhite Sperry Van Ness Chamber Elite

Katrina Meade City National Bank Nadine Pottinga United Way NSV Janie Shirley Costco Wholesale

Chairman’s Club

President’s Club

Patti Solenberger Solenberger’s True Value Hardware James Stewart Grafton Integrated Health

Letter From the CEO

Vision, continuous development, and trained talent. In the Top of Virginia Region we are very fortunate to have many community partners that work hard to provide the resources needed to supply these essential tools. This month we want to acknowledge the efforts of some of our key contributors - the Economic Development Authorities; the Workforce Initiative; the TVRC Workforce Development Committee; Virginia Career Works and their partners – the Virginia Employment Commission, Adult Basic Ed, Division of Aging and Rehabilitative Services, and the Department of Social Services; Literacy Volunteers, Horizon Goodwill, Northwest Works, Human Resource support services, AND our local educators at every level. These entities collaborate to prepare and provide for the continued business development and staffing solutions our region needs. In this issue you will also read about efforts being made to increase the viability of the many career path choices available in our region. The Worlds at Work event helps to expose seventh graders from our region to a vast variety of work environments. You will also learn about new educational opportunities for our youth through CTE (Career Technical Training) and the fantastic Widget Cup event where high school students compete in a design build competition. We applaud these economic development and workforce solution contributors for all you do to connect business and community resources for mutual success.

The full TVRC calendar can be viewed at

HOB NOB IN THE VALLEY Friday, Sept. 13 John Handley High School


New Members Northern Virginia Daily Trelleborg Marine Systems North America, Inc.


Tuesday, Sept.17 Hosted by: Costco

The World of Healing

Schewels Home

Three Sessters Wellness

Winchester Host Lions Club, Inc. Shoberg Real Estate

Community Foundation of the Northern Shenandoah Valley

Arts & Hearts Association

PC Help Local

Ashley Miller Director, Marketing & Communications Danita Roble Director, Membership Development Jody Wall Director, Program Development Billy Whirley Business Development Specialist

Dan Hitchcock Membership Development Specialist


Wednesday, Sept. 19 Guest Speaker: Christine Kennedy, Leading With Influence

Thanks to our new members who joined the Chamber between August 1 and August 30. To learn more about membership benefits, call 540-662-4118.

Fellowship of the Sip Organic Restaurant & Tea House

Cynthia Schneider, CEO

- Cynthia Schneider, CEO | Top of Virginia Regional Chamber



407 S. Loudoun Street Winchester, VA 22601 540-662-4118 OUR VISION Be the voice of business for Frederick & Clarke Counties and the City of Winchester, Virginia. OUR MISSION Provide programs and services to meet the business and professional needs of our members. OUR PURPOSE Connect business and community resources for mutual success.

TVRC NEWS & EVENTS Technology Stakeholders Round Table with special guest speaker Rafi Martina, Senator Mark Warners Office The TVRC was pleased to host Rafi Martina, Senior Policy Advisor for Senator Mark Warner. Mr. Martina, who acts as the senator’s Principal Advisor on technology, telecom and consumer protection issues, and as Principal Cybersecurity Advisor across committee assignments in banking and intelligence met with approximately 20 stakeholders to gather concerns and ideas in relation to these topics. Concerns expressed included: the need for expansion of broadband capabilities in rural areas; cybersecurity education for local businesses. It was estimated that 50% of small businesses are not secure; education of civic leaders about emerging technology trends. Suggestions included: Designate the Top of Virginia Region as a Tech Opportunity Zone; Provide a Tax Advantage Bill for employers that would incentivize apprenticeships and training Programs. The round table was hosted at Shenandoah Universities new Center for Immersive Learning Lab, where attendees were introduced to their new VRE lab.

Save the Date: Lean Six Sigma Yellow Belt One-day Training & Certification Program A Top of Virginia Regional Chamber and Roxtar Consulting partnership. Earn your professional certification in a proven, game-changing improvement methodology and help your organization on October 8: Reduce lead times and improve quality; Increase profits and gain market share; Become more competitive; See the core concepts organizations use to increase value; Learn to spot waste and target areas for improvement; Identify projects with the greatest impact to your bottom line. To register and for more information, visit Save the Date: Young Professionals Group Entreprenuer Panel, Hanley Library Entrepreneurs turn their business dreams into reality. Creative thought, a tireless work ethic, commitment, and much more help entrepreneurs run their businesses effectively and efficiently. Come glean from local entrepreneurs on October 17 and learn what it takes to successfully build a business from the ground up. To register and for more information, visit



Educators are transforming lives and preparing students for enhanced career and education opportunities within a changing global community through Career & Technical Education, CTE. Learn about the options offered to students in Clarke, Frederick and Winchester.


The Clarke County Public Schools Agriculture program is one with deep roots of tradition in the county. Livestock courses and basic plant courses have always been an option at Clarke County High School, and recently secondary Agriculture course offerings have been expanded to include Small Animal Care, Vet Science and Equine Science. Therese diversified course offerings have encouraged students without traditional Ag background to further investigate and particulate in the Agriculture program at Clarke County High School as well. This increase in numbers at the secondary level has led to the opening of a new Agriculture middle school program for the 2019-20 instruional year. Although 8th grade students have had the opportunity in prior years to take a CCHS Agriculture class as an elective,

Johnson Williams Middle School now offers an Agriculture class at each of the three grade level. Students at the middle school have the opportunity to take Introduction to Agriscience at 6th grade, Agriscience Exploration at 7th grade, and Foundations of Agriculture, Food and Natural Recourses at 8th grade for high school credit. These courses will provide numerous opportunities for hands-on experience by using the brand new green house, and working with classroom animals, woodworking equipment and metalworking simulators.

During the 19-20 instructional year, approximately150 of the 480 JWMS will be participating in on these Agriculture course offerings. Students and staff agree it is truly exciting to continue to see the Agriculture program grow and provide new opportunities for study and exploration for our students in Clark County. There is no future without Agriculture and here in Clarke County, the school division is providing the next generation a great start for future service in this critical industry.


It is an exciting time for Career and Technical Education (CTE) in Frederick County Public Schools. Though CTE has a long history in FCPS, CTE is now receiving greater attention across the nation. FCPS recognizes the importance of CTE in helping all students prepare for successful careers and post secondary education. CTE is not an “either college or work� proposition. CTE courses are offered to students in grades 6 through 12 with career exploration opportunities in middle and elementary school. All courses are organized by pathways in eight program areas and

are added to course offerings based on industry needs and student interest. Courses are aligned with state standards of learning and emphasize technical skills, student organizations, workplace readiness, and work- based experiences. CTE is the foundation for creating a talent pipeline providing all students the opportunity to find their career pathway and passion before earning their high school diploma. In grades 9 through 12, students may take a coherent sequence of CTE courses, many of which are dual enrolled with LFCC. Students may choose to pursue their interests in cybersecurity, marketing, accounting, information technology, nursing, pharmacy, agriculture, education, graphics, engineering, manufacturing, and more. In addition, students have the opportunity to earn a number of nationally recognized industry credentials. Forty-six percent of students who completed a sequence of CTE courses in a specific discipline earned a credential and advanced diploma in academic year 17-18 reflecting that CTE students are high achieving. FCPS invested in growing a comprehensive work-based learning program three years ago and has created a number of new work-related experiences for students with community partners. In addition, FCPS became an apprenticeship WINCHESTER sponsor and has employed students as PUBLIC SCHOOLS apprentices within the school division. Winchester Public Schools is proud Work-based learning provides opportunities for students to apply and hone skills to share about the upcoming groundbreaking of the Shihadeh Innovation and for employers to identify and recruit Center with the renovation of the old talent early in their development. John Kerr building behind Handley By working collaboratively with the High School beginning next month. community and business partners to WPS carefully evaluated labor market identify workforce needs and equip data to assess career opportunities for students with the skills needed to sucstudents and has developed an Innocessfully enter the workforce, Frederick vation Center to house both Career County Public Schools is continuing to and Technical Education programs as move forward in achieving its mission well as offer core content classes at to nurture all learners to realize their the new center. The programming will dreams and aspirations. See Winchester, Page 11

BUSINESS COLUMN Quality job matches leading to gainful employment By: Claire West Virginia Employment Commission

Job opportunities in Virginia are expected to expand. By 2024, it is projected that growth will reach 9.3% exceeding the national average of 6.5% (Virginia Job Outlook, Virginia Employment Commission). This places a special emphasis on the workforce development needs in our community; creating a quality pool of trained and educated job seekers. Currently, Frederick County’s unemployment rate holds 2.5%, with Winchester City at 2.8%; this can compare to the national rate at 3.7%. What does this lower than usual unemployment rate mean for job seekers and employers? For employers, it creates conversation on how to retain and recruit employees when jobs are abundant. Higher wages, more jobs, and fewer job seekers means there are less workers available for job openings, which creates the advantage of opportunity for job seekers, and those with barriers to employment (USA Today, 2018). The Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) is the state agency chosen to promote economic growth and stability by delivering and coordinating workforce services. Depending on who you are, you may have several different interactions and experiences with the VEC. At a state level the organization handles employer tax accounts, reporting labor market information, processing unemployment claims, and more. In the local workforce offices that are scattered throughout the state of Virginia, however, our primary goal surrounds that of workforce services as it relates to job seekers and employers reaching goals of quality job matches leading to gainful employment. See Job, Page 11

Fun with Membership

August in Photos

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1. Darcus Breneman (Left), Connie Paradise and Jim Guisewhite at Business & Breakfast, hosted by MidAtlantic Farm Credit. 2. Member Andy Gail reintroduced L’Auberge Provencale Bed & Breakfast to the TVRC family. 3. Members joined Same Johnson, Immerge for an educational on content marketing. 4. TVRC 2020 Young Professional Committee met to begin planning. 5. Diana Patterson (left), Kenia Brooks and guest at TVRC’s Hispanic Coalition Gathering, hosted by Courtyard by Marriott. 6. Scott Harvard (left) and Brandon Lorey at Business After Hours, hosted by Bank of Clarke County. 7. Tara Helsely joined TVRC. 8. Shelby King (left) and Lisa Sipp at B&B. 9. Adrienne Davis (left), Becky Ebert and Karina Rice Roberts at HCG. 10. Members join TVRC for August Member Orientation. 11. Rafi Martina discusses technology, telecom and consumer protection issues.


Worlds of Work

By: Shirley Dodson, City of Winchester

Photos courtesy of WoW! Frederick Thank you for your interest in the Worlds of Work (WoW!) Career Exploration event! We are excited to be entering into our 5th year. WoW! is managed by Lord Fairfax Community College Career Pathways Consortium, in partnership with Barrett Machine, Inc., Northern Shenandoah Valley Regional Commission, Frederick County Economic Development Authority, and the Winchester Economic Development Authority. Annually, nearly 3,000 7th graders from seven school districts explore work worlds, participate in job-demonstrative activities, and interact with business representatives to learn about career opportunities in our area. The seven districts are part of the Lord Fairfax Community College Career Pathways Consortium; Winchester, Frederick County, Clarke County, Rappahannock County, Shenandoah County, Warren County, and Page County. Students will explore the worlds of: Agriculture, Communications, Construction, Finance, Health Science, Information Technology, Hospitality, Manufacturing, Public Service, Transportation & Logistics WoW! will be held on September 27th at Shenandoah University’s James R. Wilkins, Jr. Athletics and Events Center. The student expo will run 8:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. then, for the first time ever, WoW! will open its doors to the public from 3 – 5 p.m. Come discover businesses that are local to our area and speak to representatives about their operation, their product, their customers and the careers available! Learn more about WoW! by visiting



A couple of years ago, the shift began to remove unemployment claims processing from the local office, and focus primarily on providing workforce services to both employers and job seekers through a multitude of resources. In addition, Virginia recognized the need to provide seamless and comprehensive services to the employers and job seekers in Virginia. This caused all state agencies surrounding employment and training to shift under one umbrella known as Virginia Career Works (VCW). VCW has five agencies operating under one umbrella providing a spectrum of services to the job seekers and employers in our community. The five agencies include Virginia Career Works – Winchester Center, Virginia Employment Commission, Virginia Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services, Virginia Department of Social Services, and Northern Shenandoah Valley Adult Education. No matter your workforce need, the VEC and all partners under the VCW umbrella are here to address them to ensure quality workforce needs are met. In addition, the partners collaborate with a variety of community resources and no one will be left unserved! The VEC & Virginia Career Works – Winchester Center is located at 419 N. Cameron St. Winchester, VA and can be reached by phone (540-722-3415) or e-mail Providing a range of services to meet your needs as a business person or job seeker, we would love to talk to you about how we can help you or your organization reach workforce success. The best part? Our state services are already paid for!

will build upon existing opportunities for studen¬Wts and house them under three academy umbrellas aligned to workforce needs to prepare students in the career pathways that will lead them onto in demand careers in the region. The Innovation Center will enable students to personalize their learning through flexible scheduling, small group instruction, and project-based learning. Students will engage in work based learning as well as be able to engage with professional in the field through an “artist in residence” type program wherein professionals will be invited to act as mentors on projects. The Innovation center will house three academies: Advanced Technologies which will feature such courses as Cybersecurity, Networking, Robotics, and Cybersystems Technology. The Professional Skills Academy will have courses in technical drawing and Architecture, Carpentry, Welding, and Materials and Processes Technology. The Health Sciences Academy will house the Nurse Aide program, Medical Laboratory Technology, Physical Therapy, Emergency Medical Technician, and Anatomy & Physiology programs. The Innovation Center will be unique in the A Career pathway is the combination of rigorous career and technical education training as well as rigorous academic coursework. Students select courses in a pathway that provide skill building opportunities as well as preparation for multiple post-high school options such as earning an industry credential or state certification through their high school coursework, apprenticeship, certification programs, military training or 2- and 4-year college options depending upon the particular student’s career goals. Winchester is dedicated to supporting learning for all no matter what it takes and developing a career pathway that aligns with in-demand career skills and opportunities and the adequate exploration and self-discovery, knowledge and skills set to navigate a career pathway successfully. Photos courtesy of Clarke, Frederick and Winchester Public Schools.

Chamber News Contest Enter to Win Handley Regional Library System is offering a swag bag of goodies for Chamber News readers. Enter to win by visiting the TVRC Calendar of Events, Look for “Chamber News Contest- Enter to Win” and register. The event will run through Wednesday, September 25 with the winner being announced in the October Chamber News newsletter.

TVRC COMMITTEE UPDATES The Workforce Development Committee originated as the Chamber’s sub-committee for Education, and served to connect business and industry with K-12 education. As time progressed, the committee became focused heavily on how business and industry could assist educators in preparing students for the workforce through career exploration and preparation programs and workplace readiness training. The committee was re-named the Workforce Development committee in 2017, and has since expanded its focus beyond K-12 and established three primary goals. The first goal is to identify local employer needs and create a searchable repository of employers and agencies that are key stakeholders in workforce development efforts. Action steps include the development of a brief employer survey to determine workplace readiness and technical skills preferred in an employer’s respective industry, as well as their interest in participating in K-12 Work-based Learning or other workforce related programs. Another goal of the committee is to collaborate with local resources to improve workplace readiness of students in K-12 in Winchester, Frederick, and Clarke. Activities of this goal group include promoting school directed work-based programs and encouraging employer participation through workforce development luncheons and printed publications, making connections between K-12 programs and SHRM, and promoting and partnering with specific Career and Technical education (CTE) and Work-based Learning initiatives including mock interviews, career pathways fairs, or other related programs . The third goal of the committee is to help enhance workforce opportunities for special populations including individuals who may be economically disadvantaged, individuals with a criminal history, Veterans, or the Spanish speaking population in our community. This goal group is currently working to develop a Workforce Wednesday video segment that would be produced quarterly and highlight stories of businesses who have successfully created workforce pipelines with individuals within these populations.

MEMBER NEWS & BUSINESS AGENDA UPDATES • The Laurel Center has volunteer training 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm at The Laurel Center 402 N Cameron St Sept 18, 23, 25,30, Oct 2 • FREE Small Biz Mentoring group will meet second Wednesday of each month 7:30AM-9AM at Firefly Cafe. Join us to talk business strategy! • Handley Regional Library System announces an extracurricular activities fair for kids, teens, and their families on Sept. 14th at 2PM at Handley Library. • Join Kimberly’s on Saturday, Sept. 14 as we celebrate 30 years! We wouldn’t be here without all of our wonderful customers like you. We will have trunk shows by Julie Vos, Pine Cone Hill, Crittenden, Berle, Joseph Ribkoff, and tastings by Stonewall Kitchen and Kysela Wines. There will be games on the lawn, kid friendly activities, refreshments, and giveaways. • AMVETS Post 18 is hosting a Cash party on October 26. Tickets are 30.00 and can be purchased at the chamber office or from an Amvets member. Cash prize up to 1000.00. Raffles. Silent auction. Pull tabs. 55 inch Vizio tv available from pull tabs. Lots of fun. Come join us to raise money for helping veterans in our area. • Heros on the River is seeking volunteers who are willing to lend their time to help with the 2nd Annual Heros 5k in Stephens City on Saturday, Sept. 28. Set up and break down; parking; registration; water station and finish line. This event had over 100 runners last year and is anticipating more. • The Real Men Wear Pink Campaign raises awareness and money to support the American Cancer Society’s breast cancer patient programs including free wigs, free lodging and free rides to treatment. Money raised is also used to fund groundbreaking breast cancer research. The participants will be challenged to wear pink EVERY day in October and to set a fundraising goal of $2500. Most of the fundraising takes place online at and through the participants personal Facebook accounts. We are hoping to recruit 15 outstanding men to collectively raise $15,000 by October 31.


Congratulations to our renewing members! We greatly appreciate your continued support and involvement.

Renewals • AIDS Response Effort, Inc. • American Veterans (AMVETS) Post 18 • Blue Ridge Area Food Bank Network- Lord Fairfax Branch • ChildSafe Center- CAC • Heart of the Home Design-Build • Kiwanis Club of Winchester • Mitzi’s Magical Vacations, LLC. • Rotary Club of Winchester • The Laurel Center Intervention for Domestic & Sexual Violence • Timber Ridge School • Youth Development Center, Inc. • Audley Farm, Inc. • Community Foundation of the Northern Shenandoah Valley • Winchester Host Lions Club, Inc. • Anderson Logistics, LLC. • Benjamin C. Rothermel, Esq. • Christian Caine Design • U.S. Army Corps of Engineers- Middle East District • Winchester Public Schools • Emmart Oil Company • The Willows at Meadow Branch • United Bank • Lord Fairfax Community College • Shockey Companies • The Winchester Star • Trelleborg Marine Systems North America, Inc.

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Clawson & Pelerin Colony Realty DeHaven Nursery, Inc. Eagan & Company Edward Jones- Mike O’Dell Enders & Shirley Funeral Home Experimax First Bank & Trust Company Griffin Law- Phillip Griffin S. II, PC. InterChange Group Precision Measurements, Inc. Ruckman Engineering Shenandoah Valley IT Valley Car Wash- #1 Winchester West Oaks Farm Market Shoberg Real Estate Three Seesters Wellness Cundiff & Associates, CPA, PC. Hi-Lite Soluntions, Inc. The Floor Shop Wilkins Companies CarStar Auto Body Repair Experts/ Patriot Collision Center Hearing Life Shenandoah Valley Golf Club Spichers Appliances Schewels Home Grand Rental- J. R. Solenberger, Inc. Midland Machinery Company Signet Marketing Solenberger’s True Value Hardware

Be a part of Top of Virginia Regional Chamber’s signature events by becoming a sponsor: THE VALOR AWARDS

Friday, November 1, 2019


CORPORATE CHALLENGE Friday, June 5, 2020

DIFFERENT SPONSORSHIP LEVELS ARE AVAILABLE . Contact Billy Whirley, 540-662-4118 EXt. 14 or

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TVRC Chamber News: The Voice of Business & Industry | September 2019 Edition  

Published monthly as a joint venture between the Top of Virginia Regional Chamber and The Winchester Star as the Chamber News: The Voice of...

TVRC Chamber News: The Voice of Business & Industry | September 2019 Edition  

Published monthly as a joint venture between the Top of Virginia Regional Chamber and The Winchester Star as the Chamber News: The Voice of...

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