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nrcc new president

NRCC Board

Mr. Steven E. Harvey, Chair (Radford)

Steven Harvey

Radford City resident Steven Harvey holds a bachelor of science degree from Radford University, where he majored in biology and chemistry and minored in mathematics.

Harvey has been employed by TechLab, Inc., a local medical diagnostic products manufacturer, for the past 18 years. He directs manufacturing operations and facilities at Techlab’s Radford location.

He has enjoyed volunteering with Big Brothers and Big Sisters of the New River Valley and Relay for Life of Pulaski and Radford.

His family includes his wife, Vanessa, and their daughters, Adrienne and Sarah. Harvey’s interests include mountain biking, kayaking and traveling.

Mr. Jim Loux, Vice Chair (Pulaski County)

Jim Loux

Jim Loux, of Pulaski County, is president of Allegheny Logistics Group, located at the New River Valley Airport in Dublin. In conjunction with his work there, he is a member of the National Customs Brokers and Freight Forwarders Association of America.

Loux holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in contract administration management.

His family includes his wife, Dr. Janice Buss, his daughter and three grandchildren. Outside work, his diverse interests include hunting, fishing, reading and a particular love for wine making.

Dr. Patricia B. Huber, Secretary (NRCC President)

Pat Huber

When Pat Bear graduated from Wytheville Community College in 1974, she never imagined that one day she would become president of a college. But, 43 years later, Dr. Pat B. Huber became New River Community College’s sixth president and the first female to hold the position.

With 25 years of full-time employment at NRCC, Dr. Huber came to the presidency after serving as vice president for instruction and student services for 10 years. She also held other leadership and teaching roles. She earned a Ph.D. in community college leadership from Old Dominion University in 2006 while serving as NRCC’s dean of arts and sciences.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Emory and Henry College and a master’s degree in secondary education from West Virginia University.

In Pulaski, where she resides with her husband, Peter, Dr. Huber enjoys being a member of the Pulaski Rotary Club and participating in community activities. She also serves on various committees and the leadership council of First United Methodist Church and the board of directors and scholarship committee for the Community Foundation of the New River Valley.

Dr. Huber likes to spend time with her family, cook and support local sports teams in her free time.

Mr. Michael Patton (Floyd County)

Michael Patton

Floyd County resident Michael Patton is an intake eligibility worker for the Montgomery County Department of Social Services.

Patton also serves his community as a member of the Floyd Town Council and as chair of the New River Valley Planning District.

His family includes his wife, Janice Yearout-Patton; daughter Erin and son-in-law Matthew; son Elliott and daughter-in-law Ladonna; and grandson Malachi. When not at work in the community, Patton can be found enjoying a game of racquetball or furthering his interest in antiques.

Mr. Jim Wheeler (Giles County)

Jim Wheeler

Jim Wheeler is a lifelong resident of Giles County. He is retired from Giles County Schools where he served as teacher, coach and administrator. Jim holds a bachelor’s degree from Concord College (now Concord University) and a master’s degree from Radford College (now Radford University). His family includes his wife, Sue Moye Wheeler, a retired teacher; son, Bill and daughter-in-law, Karen; son, Powell and daughter-in-law, Erin; and two granddaughters, Emily and Katie.

Jim is a member of the Pembroke Ruritan. He is a strong supporter of Public Education.

He spends his free time traveling with his wife, playing golf, and planting flowers.

Mr. Richard Chidester (Giles County)

Richard Chidester

Richard L. Chidester, of Pearisburg, started his education at Southside Virginia Community College, earning an associate degree in police science in 1976. He earned a bachelor’s degree in administration of justice with a concentration in police planning and management from Virginia Commonwealth University in 1977 and a juris doctorate from the Marshall Wythe School of Law in 1982.

He has served as the Giles County attorney since 1984, and full-time since January 2017. He was former principal in Hartley & Chidester, P.C. law firm. He also served as a campus police offer at the College of William and Mary from 1977 to 1982.

He is a member of the Pembroke First United Methodist Church and Local Government Attorneys of Virginia.

Chidester’s wife, Toni, is a retired teacher. They have two children, Dr. Michelle Linkous and Michael Chidester and five grandchildren, Carson, James, Ellie, Luke and Paisley.

He enjoys golf and fishing in his free time.

Dr. Sharon Scott (Montgomery County)

Sharon Scott

Early in her career as an educator, Sharon G. Scott, Ph.D., served as an intern for the New River Community College Division of Business and Related Technologies during winter quarter 1983. She later taught marketing, fashion, and sales promotion and management-related courses as an adjunct faculty member for NRCC in the mid-1980s and early 1990s. She joined Indian River Community College in Florida as a faculty member in the business department and also served as Director of Business Development and the Small Business Development Center, where she counseled entrepreneurs and designed customized training programs for business and industry. While pursuing her Ph.D., she served as associate director of management and professional development for the Pamplin College of Business at Virginia Tech from 1996 to 2011.

Currently the executive director of the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce, she resides in Christiansburg with her husband John Tutle.

She earned a bachelor’s degree in home economics and elementary education from Longwood College (now Longwood University) in 1977, a master’s degree in vocational and technical education in 1992 from Virginia Tech, and a Ph. D. in training and development with an emphasis in management, leadership and human resource management from Virginia Tech in 2010.

She currently serves as a board member of the Virginia Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives and the Alliance for Better Childcare Strategies. Over the course of her career, she has been active in numerous community, educational and professional organizations. She has earned some awards, most recently the 2012 Outstanding Achievement Award from the Virginia Police Chiefs Foundation and the 2010 Volunteer of the Year Award from the board of directors of the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce.

She enjoys gardening, gourmet foods, wine, traveling, and volunteering with local non-profits including the Ronald McDonald House, Christiansburg Presbyterian Church and Habitat for Humanity.

Mr. Brian Kitts (Montgomery County)

Brian Kitts

Brian L. Kitts, of Christiansburg, is the principal of Blacksburg High School (BHS). His career in education began as a teacher at Kipps Elementary School in Blacksburg in 2002, and he has since served as principal of Kipps, assistant principal of Eastern Montgomery High School, adjunct faculty at Radford University and has served as BHS principal since 2012. He has served in other administrative roles such as past state training and education coordinator and state advisory board for YOVASO (Youth of Virginia Speak Out about Transportation). He serves on the Transportation Safety Commission in Montgomery County.

He earned a B.S. degree in family and child development, human services from Virginia Tech, and an M.S. degree in curriculum and instruction, educational leadership from Radford University.

He and his wife, Kim, reside in Christiansburg.

Jessica Littlejohn (Montgomery County)

Jessica Littlejohn

Jessica D. Littlejohn, P.E., of Blacksburg, is the Vice President of Engineering at Hurt & Proffitt, Inc. In her position, she provides leadership to the Blacksburg Municipal, Land Development, and Transportation departments. Her career in the civil engineering industry has spanned both Delaware and Virginia for more than 20 years.

Littlejohn has a vast amount of experience in water and wastewater transmission systems, storm water, land planning, and site design of residential and commercial developments. She holds a Professional Engineer license (P.E.) in Virginia, Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania, and she also received a Simplified Strategic Planning certification from Michigan State University.

She is an alumna of Virginia Tech where she earned a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering.

Littlejohn is the co-chair of Blacksburg Partnership Transportation Committee and is a member of Onward NRV, the American Society of Civil Engineers and the American Waterworks Association.

She enjoys working on home improvement projects, hiking, landscaping and sewing. Her family includes her husband Ian and four children Elias, Mia, Sophia and Liam.

Mr. Benny Keister (Pulaski County)

Benny Keister

Benny Keister is a retired teacher, coach and guidance counselor with a master’s degree in guidance counseling from Radford University.

Keister is active in several community organizations as a member of the Masonic lodge, president of the Randolph House board, a member of the “Kids on Track” board and a lifetime member of the Pulaski County Lifesaving Crew. Additionally, Keister served as a member of the Virginia House of Delegates from 2000 to 2005.

His family includes his son, Bo, and grandsons Hayden and Seth. When he’s not working in the community, Keister can often be found traveling or fishing.

Mr. Jonathan D. Sweet (Pulaski County)

Jonathan Sweet

Jonathan D. Sweet is the county administrator for Pulaski County, a position he has held since January 2017. He previously served as the county administrator and chief economic development officer in Grayson County. He has nearly 15 years of chief administrative officer experience and more than 17 years of experience in local government.

An alumnus of Radford University with a bachelor of science degree in communications and a concentration in public relations, he also has completed the University of Virginia Darden School of Business' Senior Executive Institute and is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma's Economic Development Institute.

He has been a credentialed manager by the International County Management Association since 2010 and was recognized at the National Association of Counties' annual conference as the National County Leader of the Year in 2015 by American City and County Magazine.

He is a long-standing member of the Virginia Association of Counties, the Virginia Economic Developers Association, the Southern Economic Development Council, the Virginia Local Government Managers Association and the International County Management Association.

He lives in Fairlawn with his wife, Natalie, and three children. He enjoys golf, working out and family time.

Mr. Onassis D. Burress (Radford)

Onassis D. Burress

Onassis D. Burress is a financial advisor with Edward Jones Investments in Radford. He attended Columbia College (Mo.), where he earned both a bachelor of science degree in business administration and a master of business administration degree. Additionally, he was selected as a member of Sigma Beta Delta Honor Society, an international scholastic honor society for students in the fields of business, management and administration at the baccalaureate and graduate level.

Currently, he is pursuing a doctor of business administration degree through Johnson & Wales University. Over the past decade, he has served in various leadership/management roles in shopping centers, hotel/retail/office properties, and other big-box retail store management.

He served in the United States Air Force from 1994-1999 earning an Armed Forces Service Medal during Operation Joint Guard in Bosnia.

Currently, he serves as the public relations officer for the Harvey-Howe-Carper American Legion Post 30. Originally from Baldwyn, Miss., he is currently the President of the Radford Chamber of Commerce, Vice-President of the Belle Heth Elementary School Parent Student Association, and a member of the Virginia Main Street Steering Committee for Radford.

In his spare time, he enjoys volunteering as a coach for a variety of youth sports through the Radford Recreation Department. He is a member of Valley Bible Church. He and his wife, Loretta (who is a New River Community College graduate), have one daughter and two sons.

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