I had the pleasure to present the Lifetime Achievement Award to my dear friend and classmate, Ms. Florence Neal Cooper Smith. This extraordinary recipient was recognized for her unrelenting efforts to educate and find a cure for sickle cell anemia and its devastating impact in our community. Florence was one of nine outstanding Virginia citizens and organizations honored yesterday at the L. Douglas Wilder School’s 2022 Excellence in Virginia Government Awards (EVGA), including two student scholarship recipients.  It was wonderful to see almost 300 attendees assembled for this annual recognition which has not been held in-person since 2019.
Many thanks and appreciation to our sponsors and all those who made this event possible.

Congratulations to the 2022 Excellence in Virginia Government Awards recipients:

  • Community Enhancement: Sacred Heart Center, Richmond; Tanya Gonzalez, Executive Director
  • Hill-Robinson Expansion of Freedom: Moton Museum, Farmville; Cameron Peterson, Executive Director
  • Innovation in Government: Scott Booth, Chief of Colice, Danville Police Department
  • Public-Private Partnership: Grayson County with Appalachian Power and GigaBeam Networks
  • Unsung Hero: Betty Mattice, Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles
  • Grace E. Harris Leadership: All Saints Catholic School, Richmond; George Elliott, Principal
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Florence Cooper Smith recognized for her outstanding achievements in sickle cell anemia
  • Sofia Simmons, undergraduate student
  • Kylie Stottlemyer, graduate student

A special broadcast highlighting the honorees of the Excellence in Virginia Government Awards will air on WTVR CBS 6 at 7:30 pm this evening.

Stay tuned.

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