Executive Director Updates

Region 8 March Update

April 8, 2024


I hope you are having a wonderful spring season so far. GO Virginia Region 8 is certainly experiencing a frenzy of activity I am excited to update you on.

Local & State GO Virginia News

I virtually attended the GO Virginia State Board meeting last month.  It was a “non-meeting,” unfortunately because of a lack of a quorum, so no votes could be taken.  The discussions were robust, nonetheless, tackling issues of allowance of health care-related projects, revised core grant outcomes for workforce and site development projects, long-term impacts tracking, traded sector industry definitions, and review of higher wage jobs eligibility requirements. All these opportunities to improve policy came out of the JLARC study last year.  Several project applications were also reviewed but could not be approved without a quorum.  DHCD is hopeful to schedule a meeting where those votes can occur, so stay tuned for many updates to the program.

Region 8 was recognized by the staff at DHCD on two projects. The first was the upcoming project just approved for a study of the Blue Mountain site in Augusta County. The second was regarding the success of the Shenandoah Valley Partnership’s Sites Enhancement Project and how this project led to three site locations becoming economic development projects. It is so rewarding to see our hard work in Region 8 capturing attention statewide!

The Central Shenandoah Planning District Commission (CSPDC) has a new Executive Director!  Ann Cundy, who has been with the CSPDC for over 11 years accepted the role after Bonnie Riedesel’s retirement. We will miss Bonnie but we look forward to working with Ann. The CSPDC has served as one of two support organizations for Region 8 since the inception of GO Virginia and that partnership has enabled Region 8 to have the success that we have had over the years.

Current Projects

GO Virginia approved the planning grant for a market analysis and feasibility study on development of a Regional Industrial Facilities Authority (RIFA) at the Blue Mountain site in Augusta County. Our Region 8 Council voted in favor of this project at our January meeting. This study will include site development planning and an economic impact assessment for this location.

Upcoming Meetings

On April 9th, the Grants Review Committee will be discussing and voting to potentially send two project proposals to Council.

Our next Council meeting will be held at the Shenandoah Valley Airport in Hangar 6 at 10:00 a.m. on April 23. GO Virginia has awarded over $1 million for several site characterization, due diligence, engineering and development projects at the airport, so we’re excited to hear about that success.  The Council will be voting on several matters and will hear updates and presentations from Region 8 support organizations and staff.

Thank you for your continued support of Region 8’s efforts to grow and diversify the Shenandoah Valley’s economy. If I can be of assistance or if you have any questions about our organization, please don’t hesitate to contact me.


Deborah K. Flippo