On May 11, 2016 the New River Valley Regional Commission board of directors, comprised of elected officials and citizen appointees across the region, hosted a dinner event at the Draper Mercantile to honor their annual award recipients. Over 100 local government elected officials, state and federal representatives, and planning commission chairs were in attendance.
Penelope W. Kyle, J.D., President, Radford University, received the Citizen of the Valley award. This award is given to a citizen within the New River Valley who has made significant contributions to the betterment of the region. As Radford University’s sixth president, and first woman to serve as president, President Kyle has committed her leadership, drive and vision to transforming the university and its role in educating and inspiring future contributors to the Commonwealth of Virginia, the New River Valley and our local communities. Under President Kyle’s leadership from 2005-2016, Radford University has secured funding or completed more than $330 million in capital projects, including both new construction and renovations.
Mr. Bill Brown, recently retired Montgomery County Board of Supervisors Chair and Mr. Joseph Yost, 12th District, Virginia House of Delegates, both received the Champion of the Valley award. This award is given to an elected official within, or representing, the New River Valley who has greatly assisted communities and residents during their service to the public. Mr. Brown served as a member of the Montgomery County Board of Supervisors from 2007 until 2015. He served as Vice Chair from 2011 until 2013, and as Chair in 2014 and 2015. Mr. Brown’s tenure as an elected official was marked with pivotal decisions and major projects, many of which he helped guide and shape through his calm demeanor and consensus building skills. Delegate Yost was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates in 2011 representing the 12th District made up of Giles County, the city of Radford, and parts of Montgomery and Pulaski counties. During his time in the House, Delegate Yost has become a leader on issues relating to education and mental health and has received numerous accolades from local, state and national organizations for his legislative engagement. Aside from his service in the General Assembly, Yost is highly involved with several non-profits and community-based organizations in the 12th District ranging from early childhood education to historical associations.
Mary Moody Northen Endowment received the Friend of the Valley award. This award is given to an individual or organization outside of the New River Valley that has made significant contributions to the betterment of the region. The Endowment and the Moody Family have been stewards of Mountain Lake since the 1930s. In the fall of 2012 the Endowment commenced a renewal of Mountain Lake Lodge, upgrading its facilities, expanding outdoor recreation programs and investing millions of dollars into the facility.
See attached photo of award recipients. Front left to right, Mr. Bill Brown, Champion of the Valley, President Penelope Kyle, Citizen of the Valley, Delegate Joseph Yost, Champion of the Valley, and Mr. Edward Protz, Mary Moody Northen Endowment, Friend of the Valley.