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WV BC In Depth Communities Partners

Six New Blueprint Communities Inducted in West Virginia on February 4

Blueprint Community celebrations kicked off again February 4 at the Tamarack Center in Beckley, West Virginia, where six West Virginia communities were heralded into the program – Hinton, Sophia, Princeton, Bluefield, Richwood and Marlinton. As a new Blueprint Community, these communities have pledged to complete training sessions and homework designed to engage their communities in positive change, create a plan for comprehensive community revitalization and begin implementing these strategies.

Roughly 100 people attended the kick-off celebration, including three of the five members that will be partnering with the communities: First Century Bank, United Bank, City National Bank of West Virginia, Pioneer Community Bank and Pendleton Community Bank.

Several guest speakers also spoke at the ceremony, including state Rep. Nick Rahall; Jane Vincent, Regional Director for HUD’s Third District; Kimberly Gross, representing Gov. Earl Tomblin; Kelly Goes, representing Sen. Joe Manchin; Dr. Michelle Foster from the Kanawha Institute for Social Research & Action; Gary Hartley, representing the Boy Scouts of America; Mayor Pete Hobbs from the city of Ansted, a 2007 Blueprint Community; and John Bendel, Director of Community Investment at the Bank. Commending the communities’ leadership, the guest speakers challenged them to take advantage of the current economic opportunities associated with being a blossoming recreation destination.

To close the ceremony, the band Option 22 played a song celebrating the communities’ leadership and capacity for enacting change.

A Report to the State of West Virginia (pdf)


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