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The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce recently celebrated the ribbon cutting and opening of FLIPP Inc. located on Oak Street in Dillwyn. According to their website, FLIPP Inc. exists to create an inclusive workforce, reduce employment barriers for formerly incarcerated individuals, BIPOC, transitioning veterans, women, and to empower low-income communities through its Cutting Edge Basic Re-Entry Academic (CEBRA) and Business Inclusion & Diversity Programs (BID). Pictured are, from left, Robert Jordan, Akhenaton Mikell, Mary Jordan, Courtney Polk, Raye Elliott, Kathy Garstang, Vada Cruse, A.J. McDonald, Dillwyn Mayor Linda Venable Page, Marie Slagle, Jenny Biche, Ruth Lyle, Eddie Slagle, Sandra Moss and Bro. Max Watner.

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The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce recently celebrated its successes and annual award winners at its recent banquet held at the Dillwyn Volunteer Fire Department in mid-January.

The award winners include Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Rebecca S. Carter, Volunteer of the Year Award recipient St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary, Business of the Year Award recipient The Cake Place, and Youth Achievement Award Courtney Agee.

Also during the banquet included installation of officers and the Chamber’s Board of Directors.

“The Chamber of Commerce is proud to honor these deserving individuals and the business,” said Chamber President Thomas Jordan Miles III. “These people have contributed directly to the well-being of Buckingham County. I want every one of you to know that the State of the Chamber is very strong. 2022 was a great year for the Chamber. Our Board and membership recognizes that in any good community you need good businesses – large and small – which require our support. And that is what the Chamber does and does well and we are proud of that.”

Those sworn in on the Chamber Board of Directors include: Thomas Jordan Miles III, President; Brother Maximilian Watner, Vice President; Sandra Moss, Newsletter Editor and Chamber Founder; Faye Shumaker, Secretary; Ruth Lyle, Treasurer; amd Directors Amy White, Eddie Slagle, Brenda Jones, Barbara Wheeler, Jewel Harris, Margaret Stout, and Justin Midkiff, who also serves as Clerk of the Circuit Court for Buckingham.

Bro. Max nominated former longtime County Administrator Rebecca S. Carter. She served the Buckingham community and the region for 35 years helping to lead the way for growth, innovation and industrial development in the County, he said.

“Born in Clifton Forge, Virginia, Mrs. Carter grew up in a family of nine. As a child, she was raised to work hard and respect others, qualities that all who know her would say set the tone for her service to the County. Mrs Carter studied business management and marketing at Dabney S. Lancaster Community College. She married her late husband, Wayne Carter, in 1972 and raised three children. In 1986, the Carter family moved to Buckingham County, when Wayne was transferred to the area for his job with CSX Transportation. They fell in love with the county and its people, built a house and settled down, beginning a small farm. In September of 1986, Mrs. Carter took a job as the administrative assistant at the County office in Buckingham. She held this position for eight years, helping several different County Administrators. Finally, in 1994 she herself accepted the position of County Administrator, a job that she then held for the next 27 years, until she retired in June of 2021.”

Bro. Max noted that Carter worked with many different members of the Board of Supervisors to help make countless positive changes in the County.

“She worked with the Town Council of Dillwyn for the replacement of its aged water and sewer lines and facilitated the County’s purchase of Dillwyn's wastewater facility. Over the next several years, she helped the County to obtain over $13 million in grants to build a new water system facility, extend water lines, and upgrade and extend sewer lines along the Route 15 and Route 20 corridors. This brought in several new businesses to the County. She was involved with turning the old Dillwyn Primary School into a brand-new library and community center that the County can be proud of. Thanks to her efforts in combination with many others, Buckingham implemented the state-of-the-art gated waste sites, a vast improvement for residents’ trash disposal.”

Watner also noted that under Carter's leadership, the County built a new administration complex and renovated the historic county courthouse. The Carter G. Woodson School complex on Route 20 was renovated and upgraded, the vacant Gold Hill School building was put to profitable use and a full-time, countywide emergency rescue squad was formed. These are just some of a long list of improvements and projects to which she contributed, helping to ensure their successful outcome for the common good.”

Director Faye Shumaker nominated St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary, noting “the nominee seeks to serve the community in every possible way.”

She said as a team “they have worked to pick up more than 600 bags of trash…Imagine the size of a trash pile containing that many bags, a small mountain, for sure.”

“They show up to support the blood drives sponsored by the Buckingham Masons. Two of the blood drives were largely successful because of their participation.”

Shumaker noted the seminary’s work on the inherited Ruritan Club community organization signs across the county that the seminarians performed “quite a bit of work” on. “This group spent many hours on this project along with other Chamber members.”

“There are many other things that can be said about this amazing group of young men, but with the things I have mentioned above, I am delighted to (nominate)...St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary.”

Suzanne Vandergrift, Vice President of the Buckingham-Dillwyn Garden Club, nominated The Cake Place in Dillwyn, owned and operated by C.V. Swann.

“This small business owner opened her doors in October 2020 when our country was deep in the pandemic. Opening any business during that time was risky, but a food business…most people would have called her crazy. But she saw an opportunity…to build a small business in a small town and a fabulous bakery was born in Dillwyn.”

She noted that the business had to pivot because of the economy and “closing wasn't an option…So she put a business plan together and restructured.”

She said the business now offers The Cake Place Venue, Event and Wedding Planning, Catering and much more. “She’s always available whether it's a Sip and Paint Program, an Emergency Catering Solution, or a child’s special birthday cake.”

Casey Dunkum, a high school agriculture teacher, nominated Agee.

“Finding a hardworking, courteous, smart, young person could be a tall task, however, I know someone who fills each one of those characteristics Courtney Agee is that young lady,” said Dunkum.

Agee is a Senior at Buckingham County High School, Dunkum said, noting she was a well-rounded person, “full of potential. I have had the pleasure of working with Courtney for many years through the FFA and I am truly amazed at her work ethic.” She added that Agee is a student in the local community college’s Governor’s School and ranked 9th in her class. She serves as FFA President, her class’ spirit coordinator, is on the Student Council’s Executive Board, and Scholastic Bowl Team Member.

“Courtney works at her Family’s business, Dillwyn Repair Service. She does a great job assisting customers,” Dunkumn noted, adding she also volunteers with the Glenmore Volunteer Fire Department. “Courtney has participated in almost every event the (FFA) chapter has sponsored. She has served as an officer for several years and is currently chapter president. She is the first to volunteer to help an advisor or help coordinate the officers.”

Dunkum noted Agee has participated in VCE Cooperative leadership camps, where she placed in the Top 10. “Courney is a model of integrity that is truly refreshing…Her senior quote is Romans 12:12: Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer…Through her trials, she has overcome them with her faith and support of her family and friends.”

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This afternoon, the Buckingham Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors held its holiday gathering at the St Thomas Aquinas Seminary on Ranson Road. The seminarians and their peers served up a hearty luncheon, including food most of which was farm raised! The Chamber Directors enjoyed fellowship and great food, including choral music from the Seminary brothers. Pictured, Chamber President Jordan Miles, left, presents a gift from the Chamber to Bro. Max Watner, of St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary, who also serves as the Chamber Vice President.

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In October, Special Touch Designs Florist & Gifts was our featured Chamber program speaker. We had a large turnout and were provided soup by Wise Ridge Country Store and bread and dessert from our Chamber membership. “Our robust membership showed up in force for a most educational and informative discussion from Special Touch owner Jonathan Fitzgerald and his son, J.C.,” said Chamber President Thomas Jordan Miles III. “Special Touch truly does offer a unique and much needed service to our community, and we’re truly lucky to have them as Chamber members.” Pictured are, from left, Bro. Max Watner, Eddie Slagle, Sandra Moss, Jonathan Fitzgerald, Faye Shumaker, J.C. Fitzgerald, and Jordan Miles.

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Tonight, the Buckingham Chamber of Commerce held its regular meeting at the VFW Hall. The Chamber heard from Buckingham Department of Social Services representatives Stephanie Coleman and Lauren Jones, who discussed the upcoming job fair, which will be held Thursday, Sept. 8, from 10 am-2pm at the Buckingham County Community Center on Route 15 across from FasMart. “The Chamber was proud to host Coleman and Jones to hear from them as to this exciting opportunity for those seeking employment,” said Chamber President Thomas Jordan Miles III. “We appreciate all Social Services is doing for our residents in Buckingham.” The Chamber also welcomed Gil Ragland, of Old Dominion Insurance Services, as it’s newest member. Pictured are, from left, Barbara Wheeler, Ragland, Miles, Coleman, and Jones.

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On Saturday, April 2, the Buckingham Chamber of Commerce helped welcome Heifer’s Happiness to Dillwyn! The Chamber helped them cut the ribbon and celebrate their grand opening. “Small businesses are the backbone of our economy in Buckingham, and Heifer’s Happiness is a great example of this,” said Chamber President Jordan Miles. “We’re so proud of their investment into their new space and encourage members of the community to support them.” Pictured in the group photo are, from left, Heifer’s Happiness founders Priscilla Tyson, Angie Vaughn; Chamber Leaders Jordan Miles, Faye Shumaker, Jewel Harris, Amy White, Ruth Lyle, Barbara Wheeler, Justin Midkiff, and Brenda Jones. Angie Vaughn, a founder of Heifer’s Happiness, describes the business as: “an arts and crafts studio that also allows local artists to rent vendor spots from us to showcase their work … We have children's classes and we have adult classes and we also rent our building out for parties or whatever the case may be.”

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Members of the Buckingham Chamber of Commerce met Tuesday during their regularly scheduled meeting at the VFW Hall. Buckingham County Administrator Karl Carter spoke to the group regarding ongoing county projects and upcoming events. “Mr. Carter offered a very timely update as to what’s going on at the local level of government, and we’re proud to have the county as a chamber member,” said Chamber President Thomas Jordan Miles III. Pictured are from left, seated, newly appointed board members Brenda Jones, Amy White; standing, Bro. Max Watner, Miles, Carter, and new Board Member Justin Midkiff, who serves as the county’s Clerk of the Circuit Court along with being a newly appointed Chamber director.

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Chamber Honors Community Leaders

Chamber President Jordan Miles, second from right, presents Annual Awards to members of the Buckingham Community. Pictured are, from left, Sandra Moss, accepting the Business of the Year Award on behalf of Farrish Hardware; Volunteer of the Year Randy Waycaster; Youth Achievement Award Winner Emma Ranson, and Lifetime Achievement Award Winner James McDaniel.

Chamber Honors Community Leaders

Chamber officers stand after being sworn in by Marie Slagle. Pictured are, from left, Directors Ruth Lyle, Barbara Wheeler, Eddie Slagle, Faye Shumaker; Treasurer and Newsletter Editor Sandra Moss; Secretary Margaret Stout; Vice-President Bro. Max Watner; and Chamber President Jordan Miles.

Chamber Honors Community Leaders

James McDaniel, left, is named Lifetime Achievement Award Winner by the Buckingham Chamber of Commerce. Pictured also are Chamber President Jordan Miles and Kelly Snoddy, who read McDaniel’s nomination letter.

The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce held its Annual Banquet recently at the Dillwyn Volunteer Fire Department, recognizing James F. McDaniel Jr. as Lifetime Achievement Award Winner, Farrish Hardware as the Buckingham Business of the Year Award Winner, Randy Waycaster as the Volunteer of the Year Award Winner, and Emma Ranson as the winner of the Youth Achievement Award.

The event also celebrated the Chamber’s previous year’s successes, including gaining new members, holding new business ribbon cuttings, highlighting businesses as Business of the Month, recognizing Community Pride Award Winners, erecting and maintaining four Civic Sign sites, and supporting small businesses in Buckingham County.

“We are so proud and humbled by our deserving award winners,” Chamber President Thomas Jordan Miles III said. “They offer and have given so much to our communities, and the Chamber feels fortunate that we have them in Buckingham, and their service in the county.”

Miles also noted that the state of the Chamber was very strong and growing, being the largest civic and business group in Buckingham offering steady leadership.

In addition to the awards, the following Chamber Officers and Directors for 2022-2024 were sworn in: Miles as President; Krishna Jo Melendez, Board Chairman; Bro. Max Watner, Vice President; Margaret Stout, Secretary; Sandra F. Moss, Treasurer and Newsletter Editor; Faye Shumaker, Director; Barbara Wheeler, Director; Eddie Slagle, Director; Jewel Harris, Director; and Ruth Lyle, Director.
Peter Francisco Soil and Water Conservation District Staff nominated McDaniel for his award. It was read by Kelly Snoddy.

“He’s been volunteering in the Buckingham Community for over 50 years,” Snoddy said. “All who are blessed to know him refer to him as a ‘true southern gentleman.’ His range of volunteer efforts throughout the Buckingham Community is extensive. He is a testament to all of us in his professionalism, dedication, and integrity. His achievements are remarkable, and at the age of 91, he has certainly raised the bar high.

McDaniel has served on the Board of Directors for the Peter Francisco Soil and Water Conservation District (PFSWCD) for over 20 years. The PFSWCD serves Buckingham and Cumberland Counties, and McDaniel serves in the position of a volunteer elected Director for Buckingham County. Prior to serving as an elected Director, McDaniel served as an Associate Director for seven years, from 1992-1998. He also serves as Treasurer of the District.

“McDaniel brings to the District years of agriculture experience,” Snoddy said, “having served as the County Executive Director with Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service (ASCS), now known as Farm Service Agency (FSA) from 1968 until his retirement in May 1990. His organizational skills in conducting meetings, service on numerous committees, and availability to the staff in the office on short notice has been instrumental to the success of the Peter Francisco SWCD.”

McDaniel was also an active member of the Buckingham Ruritan Club. He served as a member of the Board of Directors for many years, and held the position of President of the Club in 1977.
“In addition to the aforementioned organizations that McDaniel serves, he also is a part of the Buckingham Housing Development Corporation Board of Directors,” Snoddy noted. “It can be said that he did not truly ‘retire’ in 1990, he just expanded his outreach. McDaniel is a true example of selfless commitment through years of donating his time and support to various agencies, businesses, and clubs.”

“I would like to commend one of the cornerstone businesses in Buckingham,” past Chamber President Eddie Slagle said, nominating Farrish Hardware. “This business is a one-man show. The owner (Dee Farrish) greets you at the door, stocks the shelves, points you in the right direction, gives you advice on what you need and how to use it.”

Slagle said, “(If) you need a referral for anything, he knows everyone and will recommend options. If you don’t see it on the shelf, just ask. It’s probably somewhere you overlooked. You would think (that) because of convenience, the prices would be higher than the big-box stores, but I have found the prices to be cheaper …This is obviously a great place to shop because there are always vehicles parked outside. (Farrish) is never too busy to stop and help each and every one.”

Kimberly Page nominated Waycaster for his award.

“Randy is a volunteer firefighter and First Lieutenant and Quartermaster for the Dillwyn Fire Department,” she said. “He has participated in a lot of training through the fire department and is always mentoring younger members, as well as our newer Amish members of the department. He also steps up and helps out with several fundraising events such as the Chicken BBQs and Tractor Pull, along with his fellow firefighters and auxiliary members.”

Waycaster is an active member on several committees at Cedar Baptist Church, which include the Cemetery, Finance, Property, and Nominating committees. “Randy is also very quick to step up and help with the children through Bible School and also helps teach Children’s Church,” Page said. He is also very active and a big help during the Christmas Drive Through at Central Virginia Christian School.

“Cherie Brickhill of CVCS says the Christmas drive-through event would not have been possible the past two years without Randy. He generously gave of his time and expertise to bring all of our ideas to fruition and bless the community with a spectacular Christmas event – no idea was too big or overwhelming, Randy was willing to put the work in to make the event special, and he did it with a smile on his face and joy in his heart. The star raised high above the nativity was Randy's special creation as was this year's 50-foot Christmas tree graced with a beautifully welded gold cross on top. Randy created both of these special features to make sure the CVCS Christmas event pointed people to the reason for the season — Jesus.”

Waycaster has also volunteered his time and cooking skills for several events, most recently with his brother and brother-in-law for the Operation Dues Already Paid (DAP) Veteran's hunt, put on in Buckingham this past year.

“Randy is someone with a big heart and a good friend to our family. He would do anything to help his neighbors and we feel like he is someone who represents this title well and not only steps up when needed, but goes above and beyond for the Buckingham community.”

Ranson was nominated by Brickhill.

“I have known Emma for the past 9 years as a student at Central Virginia Christian School. Emma excels in the classroom, in the community, and in strength of character. Emma has been recognized on the All A-Honor Roll for all of her eligible years in school. She is an exceptional writer and has won numerous writing awards in recent years including the VFW Patriot’s Pen essay contest. She has been the school’s Bible Bee and Spelling Bee winner multiple years. Currently, Emma serves as the SCA president for Central Virginia Christian School where she leads the executive board, serves as a liaison to school administration, and helps plan both fun and service activities for her peers,” Brickhill said.

Ranson is a member of Bethlehem Baptist Church, where she actively participates in the youth group. Much of her free time is spent involved in horseback riding and 4-H. “Currently, Emma serves as the Secretary for the Pegasus 4-H horse and pony club. At the state show, Emma received second place for her record-keeping. Her team competed in the Horse Hippology contest at the state fair where Emma won first in the junior division and her team placed sixth.

During the year, Emma participates in other events such as horse judging, hippology, equismartz, clinics, shows, and volunteering. “Emma has a particular interest in therapeutic riding; she volunteers weekly and plans to eventually get her certification,” Brickhill stated.

Brickhill noted that “Emma is eager to help others. At the beginning of the pandemic, Emma and her grandmother made hundreds of fashionable cloth face coverings. Emma also uses her sewing skills to help make costumes for CVCS programs … Even though Emma has already experienced much success at a young age, she is extremely humble and always willing to help her classmates.”

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The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce was delighted to have Bro. Max, at leader in our community and at St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary, as our guest speaker Tuesday night. He discussed how the massive seminary was constructed, the great impact it’s had on the community, the big move from out west to Buckingham, and the activities of the 130-member community. Bro. Max serves on the Chamber Board of Directors.

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The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce recently held a ribbon cutting at The Cake Place by CV Swann, located in Camryn Station on US Route 15 near Route 20. “The expanded delicious desserts and sweets and community event space that The Cake Place is offering will be a direct benefit to our community,” Chamber Vice President Thomas Jordan Miles said. “We are so proud of Chanita Swann and her team for investing in Buckingham, and the chamber is proud to support our small businesses. We encourage folks to visit her and find their sweet tooth.” Pictured are, from left, Ray Elliott, Patricia Johnson, ReAnna Swann, Kelise Glover, Juanita Jackson, Dana Cain, Chanita Swann, Jarvis Swann, Micheal Swann, Chamber Directors Jewel Harris, Suzanne VanDeGrift, Barbara Wheeler, Bro. Max, Faye Shumaker, Ruth Lyle, and Thomas Jordan Miles III.

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Officers and staff of the Buckingham County Animal Control Department were the guest speakers on Tuesday during the Buckingham Chamber of Commerce’s monthly meeting.

“We’re thankful for the commitment of the Animal Control team in Buckingham,” said Chamber Vice President Jordan Miles. “They aid the county in so many ways and work behind the scenes to keep us safe. We’re especially proud of the 94 percent success save rate the facility and department has for animals they take in.” Pictured are, from left, Maurice Jones, Patty Allen, Faye Shumaker, Danny Shumaker, and Bro. Maximilian.

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The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce recently welcomed A Step Above Health Services to the community during a ribbon cutting ceremony. A Step Above is located in New Canton on Randolph Creek Road. Pictured are, from left, Chamber Members Ruth Lyle, Barbara Wheeler, and Thomas Jordan Miles III, along with Jamise Vowels, Lisa Scruggs, and Carien Jaley.

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The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce recently presented Gary Cline Realty with the Chamber's Community Pride Award. Gary Cline Realty is located on U.S. Route 60 in the Court House Village. Pictured are, from left, Chamber Directors Barbara Wheeler, Thomas Jordan Miles III, and Eddie Slagle, along with Gary and Joyce Cline.

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Today the Chamber presented the Community Pride Award to the Buckingham County High School for their stellar achievement of recognizing the Class of 2020 amidst the COVID-19 virus that’s hit our community. “We’re so proud and supportive of the school division for organizing so many events for the Class of 2020,” said Community Pride Award Committee Chairman Thomas Jordan Miles III. “The banners, community drive through, and the outside graduation exercises really show what our community can do if we come together. And that’s what we did for these graduates. Businesses, families and strangers pulled together to make these recognitions happen.” Pictured are Chamber Members Miles, Sandra Moss, Eddie Slagle, Barbara Wheeler, and Division Superintendent Dr. Daisy Hicks, BCHS Principal Pattie Branch, and staff and faculty of BCHS along with graduation organizers.

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During the Buckingham Chamber of Commerce’s February 18 meeting, business owners Margaret Stout and Radha Midkiff updated Chamber members about their successes, struggles, business facts, growth and new approaches during our first installment of “How’s Business?” for 2020. Midkiff, along with her husband, Dick, own Corner Coffee Junction in Dillwyn and Stout owns Dillwyn Dairy Freeze. “This seasoned business owner and a newcomer to the food and beverage business world offered great insights into their operations and their successes,” said Chamber Vice President Thomas Jordan Miles III. “We’re glad they’re in our community and are part of the backbone of our county’s economy.” Pictured from left are, Miles, Stout, Midkiff, and Chamber President Krishna Jo Melendez.

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The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with the Corner Coffee Junction in Dillwyn, held a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of the new business on Main Street in Dillwyn.

“The Chamber is proud to assist and advocate for small business growth and creation,” said Chamber Vice President Thomas Jordan Miles III, who also serves as the representative for the Maysville District on the Buckingham County Board of Supervisors. “Small business is the backbone of our economy, and we’re so glad Dick and Radha Midkiff have invested in our community. We encourage support of their great and growing business.”

Included in the photo are District Two Supervisor Donnie Bryan, the Midkiffs, Dale Midkiff, Miles, Dillwyn Mayor Linda Paige, Chamber President Krishna Jo Melendez, Chamber Directors Eddie Slagle, Jewel Harris, Faye Shumaker, and employees and supporters of the new business.

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Chamber honors community servants, businesses

Kemps, McRae-Jones, Agee and Windy Hill Pet Care receive accolades from community

The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce honored four community leaders and one business during its Annual Awards Banquet for Chamber Year 2019.

Bill and Judy Kemp received the Lifetime Achievement Award, while Donna McRae-Jones was named Volunteer of the Year. Trevor Agee received the Youth Achievement Award and Windy Hill Pet Care owners Jon and Kristen Ober received the Business of the Year Award.

The event was held Tuesday, Jan. 21 at the Buckingham VFW Hall. The annual event celebrates businesses, Chamber accomplishments, new members, year-long activities, among the award winners.

“It is with great pleasure that I nominate Bill and Judy Kemp for the Buckingham Chamber of Commerce Lifetime Achievement Award,” wrote Sue Miles, who nominated the couple. The letter was read by Piedmont Area Habitat for Humanity Executive Director Jayne Johnson. “The story of Bill and Judy Kemp is one that is guaranteed to inspire others. Their drive and determination to serve their fellow men and women is obvious as you hear about their life journey and volunteer work. Whether it’s here in Buckingham County or literally across the United States, they have a story to tell,” Miles wrote.

While the Kemps moved to Virginia in 1974 and Buckingham in 2008, their service to their communities has spanned many decades.

“In 1988, after learning about the national Habitat for Humanity program, through a Reader’s Digest article, both Judy and Bill agreed that this program and its principles worked for them. Working with Presbyterian minister, the Rev. Greg Gregory, in Ashland...they began laying the groundwork for Hanover Habitat for Humanity. They also became involved with volunteer work in Appalachia, with an encumential organization called Christian Appalachian Project. This project brought volunteers into Appalachian communities for home repair and reconstruction,” Miles wrote.

Miles said the couple became involved in Habitat ‘builds’ and started caravanning with others who were known as Habitat Care-a-Vanners. “A bit like gypsies, they traveled from coast to coast. South in the winter, north in the summer; building Habitat houses in 29 states. “When the Kemps decided they needed a home base, lucky for us, it was Dillwyn. Along with continuing their volunteer work in Appalachia, the Kemps now are working with the Piedmont Area Habitat for Humanity (formerly known as Farmville Area Habitat for Humanity) and specifically the Buckingham County affiliate.”

“The Kemps are a great example of what caring people can do to make our community a better place.” Miles wrote. “Simply put, there are well over 100 families throughout the United States that are now living in decent homes because of the Kemps.”

McRae Jones was nominated by Thomas Jordan Miles III for the Volunteer of the Year Award.

“Donna’s selflessness, her dedication to her fellow man, and her willingness to donate her time for the betterment of the lives of others’, serves to meet the measure, as President John Kennedy stated, when we sought to put a man on the moon,” said Miles, who serves on the Buckingham County Board of Supervisors representing District 4/Maysville District and serves as Chamber Vice President. “Kennedy said, this nation chose this goal and many others, “not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills.” And the community engagement and involvement of Donna McRae Jones embodies this call.”

McRae Jones has volunteered with and belongs to more than 10 local organizations, churches and civic groups, including the Chamber of Commerce, Relay for Life, Salem and Sharon Baptist Churches, Friends of the Buckingham Public Library, the former Ruritan Club of Buckingham, Central Virginia Regional Library, Piedmont Area Habitat for Humanity, 4-H, Central Virginia Arts, and Historic Buckingham Inc.

“She’s played an integral role in her 10 years in helping restore the Buckingham Chapter of Relay for Life,” Jordan said. “During the time of the Buckingham Ruritan Club, and even after it’s folding, Donna has continued to keep the Buckingham Memorial Day Ceremony going, organizing and collaborating with other groups to make this annual event happen, including Buckingham JROTC, the American Legion Post, and the VFW Post. She’s worked alongside many great men and women to keep this great tradition alive.”

As leader and Chairman of the Habitat for Humanity Buckingham Build, Donna has assisted with and overseen the fundraising and public relations for the construction of five new homes and one home rehabilitation, literally helping put vulnerable people in secure and safe homes, helping our neighbors in Dillwyn and across Buckingham succeed, Miles said. “And, this month marks her initial term in the office of President of the Board of Directors for the Piedmont Area Habitat for Humanity, one of few Buckingham residents to hold this leadership position.”

Betty Shapiro nominated Windy Hill Pet Care as the Business of the Year.

“Windy Hill opened in early 2017 and I must say they keep growing and growing,” she said, noting “word of mouth has been letting people know the super place, great service, and comfortable feelings you get when you board your dog at their facility. Jon and Kristen Ober, the owners, are the keepers of the troops. I have used their services several times a year and can truly say my dachshund is always sad to go home.”

She said their kennels are state of the art and the play yards are separated by who can play “with who seniors who just mill around and need extra attention or the jet set who need lots of running space and exercise time. If you come at anytime you are apt to see Jon or Kristen or both out there playing catch, sitting and holding, petting, rubbing, and giving love and snacks to their boarders.”

Shapiro concluded by noting that “Buckingham was lucky when the Obers decided to move here and open Windy Hill Pet Care (and) their facility and their care of the animals make it the place to be.”

Agricultural teacher Casey Dunkum Davis nominated Agee for the Youth Achievement Award.

She said she has seen Agee, a Glenmore resident, “grow into a leader and respected friend among his peers” when he was in the Buckingham FFA.

“Trevor is a young man who has worked hard academically and outside of the classroom. Trevor graduated from Buckingham County High School as a honor graduate in 2019 with a 3.8 GPA. Trevor is also an active member of the Glenmore Fire Department following in his grandfather and father's footsteps. Trevor was Glenmore's first junior firefighter to join the department in November of 2018. Trevor continues to improve his firefighter knowledge by taking EMT classes. Trevor aspires to grow in the firefighter profession throughout his life.”

Davis noted Agee was an an active member of the Buckingham FFA, holding several officer positions with the highest being president his senior year, accumulating several accolades.

“When Trevor was in middle school when he started working after school and summers at his family's business, Dillwyn Repair Service. Trevor is currently employed there where he works alongside his father. Trevor and his father also operate a firewood business in the fall and winter and lawn care in the spring and summer. He has grown in his knowledge of the business and has taken on greater roles and responsibilities as he has gotten older,” Davis said.”

Davis said she has told (Agee) several times that he “is the type of young man that I want my son to be like when he gets older. Trevor is humble, has a servant's heart and does not do things for recognition.”

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Thomas Jordan Miles III
Chamber Vice President

For immediate release: Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Pictured are 2019 Chamber Award winners Donna McRae Jones, Trevor Agee, Judy and Bill Kemp, and Kristen and Jon Ober, owners of Windy Hill Pet Care.

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How's Business

Central Virginia Community Health Services (CVCHS) has been named the October Business of the Month by the Buckingham County Chamber of Commerce.

“The Health Center and CVCHS employs many of our county residents and takes care of our family and neighbors,” said Chamber Vice President Thomas Jordan Miles III. “The Chamber is proud to recognize the system, the centers, its staff and all their clients for a job well done.”

Pictured are, from left, David Christian, Tracy Washington, Salonge Crenshaw, Kathy Tillett, CW Whindleton, Thomas Jordan Miles III, Dr. Randall Bashore, and Tammy Baird.

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The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce presented its September Community Pride Award to Route 60 Convenience recently.

The store, which has undergone many recent improvements, is located on Route 60 just east of the courthouse village, and offers fuel, along with hot food and groceries.

"The Chamber is proud to recognize and promote small businesses in our community," said Community Pride Award Co-Chairman Thomas Jordan Miles III. "Ajay and Nikhil Patel have worked hard to improve the exterior and interior of their store, and the public, their customers, and the chamber have all noticed these positive measures."

Pictured presenting and accepting the award are, from left, Sandra F. Moss, Barbara Wheeler, Krishna Jo Melendez, Thomas Jordan Miles III, Ajay Patel and Nikhil Patel.

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The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce recently participated in the ribbon cutting ceremony at the new location of Fisher Auto Parts, now located on Oak Street adjacent to Reid's Super Market and across from Dairy Freeze.

"We take great pride in helping expand the network of small businesses in Buckingham County," said Chamber Vice President Thomas Jordan Miles III. "The chamber allows for great exposure of what our local and small businesses do and offer for their existing and potential consumers. We're glad Fisher has moved and expanded and wish them all the best."

Fisher Auto Parts staff pictured are, from left, Pat Shumaker, Scott White, Jack Boswell, David Rupe, Jamie Perry, Angie Whorley, Heather Browning, Wayne Davenport, and Timmy Boswell; Chamber officers include Eddie Slagle, Thomas Jordan Miles III, Krishna Jo Melendez, Janet Miller, Jewel Harris, Barbara Wheeler, and Sandra Moss.

Slate River Veterinary

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The "How's Business" installment of the Buckingham Chamber of Commerce's Tuesday, July 16 meeting drew a large crowd from the community. During the meeting, Lucky's Convenience Store Owner Tom England and Central Virginia Christian School Administrator Cherie Brickhill spoke about how the successes of their respective businesses and institutions.

"Tom and Cherie are great community supporters, and the Chamber very much enjoyed hearing what their strategies for success were," said Chamber Vice President Thomas Jordan Miles III. "We also learned what their biggest headaches are, how many people they employ, and their plans and thoughts on growth." Pictured are, from left, Tom England, Chamber President Krishna Jo Melendez and Cherie Brickhill..

Slate River Veterinary

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Buckingham Chamber Donates to Inaugural Tractor Pull

The Buckingham Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors voted unanimously Monday to donate $500 toward the Dillwyn Truck and Tractor Pull, presented by Buckingham Volunteer Fire and Rescue, which is set for Saturday, July 27 at 7 p.m. on Wingo Road behind the rescue squad building.

"We are very proud to support our hard-working volunteer men and women in their efforts to unite the community," said Chamber Vice-President Thomas Jordan Miles III. "We encourage other businesses and members of the community to do the same by becoming sponsors of this great event and attending the event later this month."

The donation makes the Chamber is silver sponsor of the event.

Tickets to the event are $15 with children 10 and under being admitted free, and food and beverages will be sold on site. For more information on the event, call 434-390-2663.

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