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People - February 2018

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Nick Bates has been named chief financial officer of Liberty Tax in Virginia Beach. Bates will follow Kathleen Donovan, who resigned last year. Bates was vice president of finance at Liberty Tax. (The Virginian-Pilot)

Robert P. Giordano has been named chief operating officer of Top Guard Security in Norfolk. He was chief operating officer of Kwantek. (News release)

The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation has added two new members to its leadership team. Ghislain d’HumiПres has been named executive director and senior vice president, core operations, and Paul Scott has been named senior vice president of hospitality. The positions were created to improve operations and efficiency. D’Humières was director and CEO of the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Ky. He previously was director and chief curator of the University of Oklahoma’s Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art in Norman. Scott joins the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation from the Hilton New Orleans Riverside, that city’s largest hotel. Before joining Hilton in 2013, he worked for Starwood Hotels and Resorts as vice president of food and beverage for North America and as general manager of the Swan and Dolphin in Orlando. (

Toano-based Lumber Liquidators named Famous P. Rhodes to its board of directors. Rhodes is executive vice president and the chief marketing officer with Bluegreen Vacations Corp., a vacation ownership company. Lumber Liquidators is North America’s largest specialty retailer of hardwood flooring, with more than 385 locations. (

Thomas R. Benzing has been reappointed to the Virginia Museum of Natural History board of trustees. Benzing is a professor in the Department of Integrated Science and Technology at James Madison University.  (News release)

Kim Blosser has been named president of Lord Fairfax Community College. Blosser was vice president of academic and student affairs of the community college, which has campuses in Middletown and Fauquier County. Blosser was one of more than 100 candidates who applied during a nationwide search. She is the institution’s fifth permanent president. She succeeds Cheryl Thompson-Stacy, who is retiring. (

Eastern Mennonite University head men’s basketball coach Kirby Dean will resign at the end of the current season. He has accepted a position as the director of parks and recreation for Rockingham County. (News release)

Michael Post will become vice president for enrollment management of Bridgewater College on July 1. He has been vice president for enrollment at Mount St. Mary’s University in Maryland. (News release)

Danville Police Chief Philip Broadfoot retired Jan 1. He had led the city police force for 14 years. (Danville Register & Bee)

Tonya Milling, executive director of The Arc of Southside for seven years, has been named executive director of The Arc of Virginia. She began her new position with the state organization in January. (Work It, SoVa)

Roanoke-based Hollins University has appointed Ashley Browning vice president for enrollment management. Browning joined Hollins in 2009 and previously served as the university’s director of admissions. A 2007 graduate of the University of Virginia, she holds a master’s degree in liberal studies from Hollins and earned a doctorate from Vanderbilt University in 2016. (News release)  

Ken McFadyen, the director of economic development for Botetourt County, has been elected president of the Virginia Economic Developers Association. McFadyen has nearly 20 years of experience in economic development and public administration. (News release)

Jonathan D. Puvak and Daniel R. Sullivan have been promoted to partner at Gentry Locke in Roanoke. Puvak practices on the firm’s Business & Corporate team. Sullivan works on the firm’s Business Litigation team. (

Tim Smoot, an agent with Long & Foster Real Estate’s New River Valley office, has been appointed to a two-year term on board of directors of the New River Valley Association of Realtors. (News release)

Jonathan D. Puvak and Daniel R. Sullivan have been promoted to partner at Gentry Locke in Roanoke. Puvak practices on the firm’s Business & Corporate team, assisting businesses, business owners and governmental entities with corporate governance, commercial transactions, employee benefits, and tax and real estate matters. Sullivan works on the firm’s Business Litigation team. His experience includes business, insurance, product liability and professional liability lawsuits. (

Bradley C. “Butch” Lambert and Donnie W. Rife have been appointed to the Virginia Gas and Oil Board. Lambert is deputy director at the Big Stone Gap-based Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy. Rife is former chairman of the Dickerson County Board of Supervisors. (News release)

Larance Eugene Middleton, of Big Stone Gap, has been appointed to the Board for Coal Mining Examiners. Middleton is a belt examiner at Contura Energy’s Deep Mine 41. Douglas E. Deel, Phillip W. Hale and Bennie B. Johnson have been reappointed to the board. Deel is a retired heavy equipment operator from Breaks; Hale is a surface safety manager from North Tazewell, and Johnson is a shift supervisor at Kingsport, Tenn.-based Alpha Natural Resources. (News release)

Chicago-based Grant Thornton LLP has named LaVerne H. Council as the firm’s national managing principal for Enterprise Digital Strategy and Innovation. Council is based in Alexandria. Her past experience includes serving as senior vice president and general manager at Mitre Corp.; chief information officer (CIO) and assistant secretary for the Office of Information and Technology at the Department of Veterans Affairs and corporate vice president and global CIO at Johnson & Johnson. (

Victoria D. Harker has been named to the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia. Harker is executive vice president and chief financial officer at McLean-based Tegna Inc. (News release) 

HITT Contracting Inc.  announced a new generation of leaders in December. Co-Presidents Jim Millar and Brett Hitt will become co-chairmen of a newly formed board, and Russell Hitt will become chairman emeritus. Executive Vice President Kim Roy has been named CEO, becoming the first woman CEO of a top 100 U.S. construction company, as defined by ENR (Engineering News Record), an industry trade magazine. Executive Vice Presidents   Jeremy Bardin and Drew Mucci will be co-presidents. (

Kevin Phillips is the new CEO of Herndon-based Mantech International Corp. Phillips, ManTech’s former president, succeeds George Pedersen, now the company’s executive chairman. (Washington Business Journal)

Atif Qarni, most recently a teacher at Beville Middle School in Woodbridge, is Virginia’s new secretary of education. Qarni’s December appointment was unusual.  A teacher hasn’t stepped directly from the classroom into the Cabinet for at least a decade, according to the Virginia Education Association, one of the state’s confederation of teachers. (The Washington Post)

Todd P. Haymore, Virginia’s secretary of commerce and trade under Gov. Terry McAuliffe, will join the law firm Hunton & Williams in March to lead its new Global Economic Development, Commerce and Government Relations Group. (News release)

Angela Inglett has joined the Virginia Association of Counties as director of program development. She was a legislative assistant to U.S. Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-6th. (News release)

Gena McGroarty was promoted to vice president of MWCAdvocacy at McGuireWoods Consulting in Richmond. A former congressional aide, she joined the firm in 2016 after working for the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce and South Carolina Department of Commerce. (News release)

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