Help Code Ninjas Front Royal celebrate our Grand Opening! We are hosting our first Parent’s Night Out!
$35 per child, space limited to 5! – Drop them off. Go have fun. Just remember to pick them up.
You deserve a night on the town. Meanwhile, your kids want to play and have fun. That’s why we offer Parent’s Night Out – a win-win evening for families.
Drop off your kids at Code Ninjas, where they’ll play games, assemble puzzles, build robotics, and more. Once you’ve had a chance to unwind, swing by to pick them up (please) and hear about all the fun they’ve had!
Governor Northam introduces first-ever statewide strategic plan to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion
On February 26, 2021, Governor Ralph Northam unveiled ONE Virginia, a first-in-the-nation statewide strategic plan to advance visible diversity, equity, and inclusion across state government.
“To truly move forward as a Commonwealth, we must prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusion as our collective goals,” said Governor Northam. “The ONE Virginia Plan is a strategic blueprint to institutionalize equity across state government and effectively address deeply-rooted structural and systemic barriers to access and opportunity. This roadmap will ensure our efforts are accompanied by accountability, measurable results, and sustained impact, and help make Virginia the best place to live, work, visit, and thrive.”
In September 2019, Governor Northam appointed Dr. Janice Underwood to serve as Virginia’s first cabinet-level Chief Diversity Officer. The Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (ODEI) have worked collaboratively with public and private stakeholders to develop the ONE Virginia Plan—a sustainable framework to operationalize equity and promote inclusive practices across Virginia with a focus on reducing inequities.
“Diversity, equity, and inclusion are more than a moral imperative or a legal mandate—they are key to achieving organizational excellence,” said Dr. Underwood. “Together we are charting a new path for our Commonwealth, one that values our diverse people as our greatest strength. Using the Inclusive Excellence framework, ONE Virginia will help implement tangible reforms that interrupt long-held systems of structural inequity to create sustainable change, innovation, and productivity across state government, throughout Virginia, and around our country.”
The ONE Virginia Plan will support more than 100 state agencies in the Commonwealth in prioritizing and implementing strategies to provide fair and equitable services and cultivate a valued and high-performing workforce. It will help ensure that people in positions of leadership understand systemic inequity and its effects and work to increase diversity at all levels of government, foster an inclusive and welcoming organizational culture, establish shared accountability for visible equity, and promote community engagement. In the coming months, the ODEI will seek input and suggestions from state employees, external stakeholders, and community leaders to further develop a concrete equity policy.
“It has been an honor to work with Dr. Underwood, alongside an amazing steering committee, to stretch the ONE Virginia model throughout the Commonwealth to build statewide capacity for inclusive excellence,” said Dr. Kevin McDonald, Vice President for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Community Partnerships at the University of Virginia. “I have already engaged the greater Charlottesville area in this important work, and I am excited about its potential for scale across Virginia.”
The ONE Virginia Plan is an unprecedented model for fostering diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace environments and is being codified by the General Assembly through legislation supported by the Northam Administration. House Bill 1993, sponsored by Delegates Alex Askew and Delores McQuinn, requires state agencies to establish and maintain comprehensive diversity, equity, and inclusion strategic plans in coordination with the Governor’s Chief Diversity Officer.
“The comprehensive emphasis on equity-minded legislation throughout the 2021 General Assembly session has been historic,” said Secretary of Administration Grindly Johnson. “This legislation makes Virginia a national exemplar in fostering the business case for organizational effectiveness in our state agencies.”
This plan was developed in collaboration with the Department of Human Resource Management (DHRM). Together with the ODEI, DHRM and an interdisciplinary volunteer executive steering team created an online toolkit for use by state agencies and other stakeholders to facilitate the implementation of individualized strategic plans that advance diversity and inclusive excellence. The next phase of the ONE Virginia Plan will focus on working with an initial cohort of 10 state agencies that provide direct support to the public during the COVID-19 pandemic to create agency-based strategic diversity and inclusion plans modeled after the statewide framework.
“The critical work of state government depends upon our ability to attract and retain a talented workforce that reflects the diversity of the Virginians we serve,” said DHRM Director Emily Elliott. “We charge all agency leaders to adopt the ONE Virginia Plan and subsequent Principles of Community to create an engaged workforce that leverages diversity as a strength, supports an inclusive work environment, and works in pursuit of policies and practices that hold each agency accountable for expanded access, success, and overall inclusive excellence.”
The ONE Virginia Plan and the online toolkit are available here. For more information about the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and its work, please visit governor.virginia.gov/diversity.
Shower Trailer update for Warren County’s Thermal Shelter guests
The shower trailer will be available to the guests of our local Thermal Shelter during the winter. It will also be available in case of disaster and for emergency personnel. In the past we have borrowed shower trailers from other counties. We are finally filling a high demand need!
The goal is to have three separate shower stalls installed. The trailer will be complete with hot water heaters and toiletries. Each stall will have it’s own door for privacy and convenience.
In the links below, there are items that are needed for purchase if you would like to help in lieu of a cash donation. Links provided by Robert Hupman, the man with the plan!
- 275 Gallon Water Tank
- Fold Up Step for 30″ Door
- Roll A Ramp – portable ramp 16ft L x 26″W – Fill your cart with this item: A12615A19 ($1,469.99)
Story provided to you by the Rotary Club of Warren County. To learn more about Rotary visit our website!
LFCC once again named a Military Friendly school for 2021-2022
LFCC has been recognized as a 2021-2022 Military Friendly ® School. Institutions earning the Military Friendly® School designation were evaluated using both public data sources and responses from a proprietary survey. This is LFCC’s 11th year of receiving the distinction.
The 2021-2022 Military Friendly® Schools list will be published in the May issue of G.I. Jobs magazine and can be found at www.militaryfriendly.com. Methodology, criteria, and weightings were determined by Viqtory with input from the Military Friendly® Advisory Council of independent leaders in the higher education and military recruitment community. Final ratings were determined by combining the institution’s survey response set and government/agency public data sources, within a logic-based scoring assessment. An institution’s ability to meet thresholds for student retention, graduation, job placement, loan repayment, persistence (degree advancement or transfer) and loan default rates for all students and, specifically, for student veterans, were measured.
“Our student veterans are resilient and focused,” said LFCC veteran academic advisor/certifying official Sharon Painter. “In this past year, our student veterans have learned to adapt to changing learning environments, maneuver through changes to Department of Veterans Affairs laws and manage pandemic constraints. They have stepped up to meet these challenges and continue to succeed in 2021.”
LFCC had particularly strong measurements when it came to the retention and graduation rates of our student veterans. According to Painter, the college had 230 veteran, active duty, reservist or National Guard students enrolled in the 2019-2020 academic year.
“Military Friendly® is committed to transparency and providing consistent data-driven standards in our designation process,” said Kayla Lopez, National Director of Military Partnerships, Military Friendly®. “This creates a competitive atmosphere that encourages colleges to consistently evolve and invest in their programs. Schools who achieve designation show true commitment and dedication in their efforts. Our standards assist schools by providing a benchmark that promotes positive educational outcomes, resources, and support services that better the educational landscape and provide opportunity for the military community.”
About Military Friendly ® Schools:
The Military Friendly ® Schools list is created each year based on extensive research using public data sources for more than 8,800 schools nationwide, input from student veterans, and responses to the proprietary, data-driven Military Friendly® Schools survey from participating institutions. The survey questions, methodology, criteria and weighting were developed with the assistance of an independent research firm and an advisory council of educators and employers. The survey is administered for free and is open to all postsecondary schools that wish to participate. Criteria for consideration can be found at www.militaryfriendly.com.
Founded in 2001, VIQTORY is a service-disabled, veteran-owned small business (SDVOSB) that connects the military community to civilian employment, educational and entrepreneurial opportunities through its G.I. Jobs® and Military Friendly® brands. VIQTORY and its brands are not a part of or endorsed by the U.S. Dept of Defense or any federal government entity. Learn more about VIQTORY at www.viqtory.com.
Town Talk: A conversation with John Hutchinson, Valley Conservation Council
In this Town Talk, our publisher Mike McCool speaks with John Hutchinson, President of the Valley Conservation Council (VCC) in Staunton, Virginia.
John joined VCC as Executive Director in 2020. John has been engaged in fundraising, development, and policy research related to land conservation and battlefield preservation in Virginia and nationally for more than 36 years. Most recently, John directed the land acquisition and conservation programs at the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation beginning in 2001. He has protected thousands of acres on Civil War battlefields in the Shenandoah Valley through donation, bargain sale, and fee purchase.
The Valley Conservation Council is a Staunton-based nonprofit that preserves and protects the natural resources of the greater Shenandoah Valley region, recently aimed its conservation expertise and has recently helped bring protection to almost 1,000 acres of mountain land adjacent to the Shenandoah National Park that will eventually become part of its borders. (See story here)
Town Talk is a series on the Royal Examiner where we will introduce you to local entrepreneurs, businesses, non-profit leaders, and political figures who influence Warren County. Topics will be varied but hopefully interesting. If you have an idea, topic, or want to hear from someone in our community, let us know. Send your request to news@RoyalExaminer.com
United Way following through on $5,500 pledge to Blue Ridge Legal Services
The United Way of Front Royal-Warren County is making good on its promise to support Blue Ridge Legal Services with $5,500 in grant funding for this fiscal year. Many positive results have been achieved from the $46,052 given by the United Way to Blue Ridge Legal Services over the past seven years, and the community has benefited from this partnership. The United way hopes to renew and increase its commitment to this organization in the coming years.
According to Jennifer Locke, the Managing Attorney for Blue Ridge Legal Services serving Front Royal-Warren County, COVID-19 forced some changes for the organization in 2020. For example, the legal clinic is no longer accepting in-person applications. Additionally, since June 2020, the clinic has experienced an increase in demand for services.
The three biggest issues that the clinic works with clients to resolve are Domestic Violence (45%), Evictions (30%), and Bankruptcy (20%). The clinic closed 41 cases in Front Royal-Warren County in 2020, aiding 121 residents during this process. They achieved $500 in lump-sum judgments, $800 in monthly benefits, and $97,293 in avoidance of claims/liability for the clients they serve. Additionally, they achieved three bankruptcy discharges, three prevented evictions, and two delayed evictions.
In working to increase its efforts in the community, the clinic has has hired an additional attorney to help serve Front Royal-Warren County. They were able to accomplish this using a grant from IKEA and a dollar-for-dollar match from the Virginia Governor’s Office.
If you would like to partner with the United Way as we work to support our partner agencies, please visit the DONATE page on our website. Since 1950, the United Way has worked to advance the common good in Front Royal-Warren County. The community wins when a child succeeds in school, when families are financially stable, and when people are healthy. The United Way’s goal is to create long-lasting change by addressing the underlying causes of the challenges we face. Living United means being part of the change!
To reach the United Way offices in Front Royal-Warren County (134-B Peyton Street, Front Royal, VA, 22630), please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 540-635-3636.
House for sale: 361 Walnut Drive, Front Royal – Watch the tour!
FOR SALE — 361 Walnut Drive Front Royal, VA 22630 — over $200k in recent updates!
Nestled at the base of the Skyline Drive in the sought-after Belmont subdivision, this showplace benefits from nearly $200,000 in updates since 2011 (be sure to review the spreadsheet for details). Perfectly situated on over one professionally landscaped acre, it offers a brilliant combination of a “beach house meets Southern Living” appeal thanks to the vision of the owners and their superb architects. The property has been graced with a plethora of additions and enhancements both inside and out during its eighty years of serving as a beloved residence for only two families since its origin in 1940. The current owners are downsizing as they embrace their retirement years, but shared, “out of the 19 homes I’ve owned in my lifetime, this has been my favorite.” The seller loves most his man cave, office and workshop in his basement getaway while his wife most appreciates that “it’s so comfortable and beautiful and has room for all of our family and easily accessible room for all of our stuff with the walk-in attic and basement.”
- ACREAGE: 1.14 (two corner lots combined)
- FINISHED SQUARE FOOTAGE: 3,283 (with additional 1,544 some of which is partially finished in basement)
- ROOMS: 4 Bedrooms/3.5 Bathrooms (two main level master suites on opposite ends of home), family room, living room, formal dining room, library, sitting room off master (w/ bookcase), recreation room, basement hobby room with utility sink (21×15–partially finished and could be an ideal guest room since it’s adjacent to ½ bath) workshop (with exterior door–former garage), office/utility room, large front porch (29×9), landscaped/hardscaped park-like rear patio (23×17) w/ koi pond, walk-in attic (41×25) perfect for future expansion
- MOST NOTABLE UPDATES: Kitchen Upgrades–blue glass backsplash, skylight, high end soft close/pull out/dovetailed “Medallion” cabinetry, island w/ breakfast bar, stainless GE Profile appliances, trash compactor, walk-in pantry, pendant lighting–Master Suite Expansion–bedroom/sitting room/bathroom remodel (spacious bath with soaking tub, tremendous tiled shower, granite double sinks)–Dual Zoned Heating/Cooling–forced air and hot water baseboard heat (annually maintained furnace was replaced 2010 & new compressor installed in 2019)–New Roof in 2013 & Paving in 2015
- OTHER FEATURES NOT TO MISS: The option of two beautiful front entrances/driveways (one is circular), wonderful level front yard, shaded private rear yard, gas fireplace (in former wood burning fireplace), stately upgrades (hardwood floors throughout, crown molding, chair railing, ceiling fans, recessed lighting), newer storm doors, gutter guards, invisible fence, potting/storage shed under porch, several closets have automatic lighting, walk in closets, built-in bookcases in library, excess storage areas (including an oversized cold storage room), two washer/dryer hookups (in main and lower level), some replacement windows and much more…
Listed by: Beth Waller, Associate Broker at KW Solutions – Keller Williams Realty
Local Office: 27 Cloud Street Front Royal, VA 22630
Northern Virginia Office: 8100 Ashton Ave #103 Manassas VA 20109
Licensed in VA
To learn more about my real estate sales or nonprofit (WHAT MATTERS), to schedule a no-cost social media video to promote your business/group or cause, or to discuss my listing your property (which makes all of my charity efforts possible), visit my website at www.whatmattersw2.com or give me a call at 540-671-6145!