The stuff of dreams
Whether it’s aiming to solve a problem, build a better mousetrap or simply make a better life for themselves and their families, entrepreneurs start their businesses with a dream.
And it’s in recognition of these visionary innovators that Virginia Business is pleased to debut StartVirginia, a new annual publication devoted to startups and the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Virginia Business Associate Editors Courtney Mabeus-Brown and Robyn Sidersky took the lead for this special issue, which is packaged with our regular June magazine and includes first-person elevator pitches from entrepreneurs, guidance on how to get started in government contracting, a list of early-stage and seed funding organizations in Virginia, and much more. We are indebted to the leaders at Virginia Innovation Partnership Corp., Startup Virginia, 757 Angels and Twin Cities Business (publisher of the StartMN guide to Minnesota startups) for their assistance and advice as we launched this publication with the same name as our magazine’s monthly StartVirginia page, which is also focused on all things innovative and entrepreneurial.
Innovation is about big ideas, and they don’t get much bigger than the Paul and Diane Manning Institute of Biotechnology, the subject of our June cover story. Deputy Editor Kate Andrews writes about how the Mannings are launching the University of Virginia institute with a $100 million gift and a vision for nothing less than curing “five or six diseases” and building a statewide biotech hub.
Also in this month’s issue, Assistant Editor Katherine Schulte takes an in-depth look at how Virginia is grappling with a nationwide shortage of primary care physicians; Andrews relates a terrifying tale of how AI is enabling growing cybercrime; and for LGBT Pride Month, Sidersky writes about how employee resource groups are advocating for LGBTQ+ workers at some of the commonwealth’s largest corporations. Finally, contributing writer Sydney Lake examines the speedy success of Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, which graduated its 10th class of doctors in May and has quickly become one of the nation’s most competitive medical schools.
Speaking of success, I don’t get enough opportunities to praise the achievements of our team at Virginia Business, so I am proud to share that the magazine won 18 awards in the Virginia Press Association’s 2022 News & Advertising Contest, competing in the specialty publications category. As best as we can ascertain, this is the most awards Virginia Business has received in a single contest year in our nearly 40-year history.
Our staff swept the news writing portfolio awards, with Andrews, Schulte and Sidersky taking first, second and third places, respectively. Judges said Andrews “does an excellent job of offering context, humanity and accessible narrative to the variety of stories in her portfolio, from restaurants refusing patrons to [a] mass shooting to a complex credit [unions] story.”
Additionally, freelance illustrator Doug Fuchs was awarded a Best in Show plaque for his illustration of the Port of Virginia’s statewide infrastructure for the 2022 Virginia Maritime Guide, while Virginia Business Art Director Joel Smith won six awards for advertising design and co-won two other awards. Meanwhile, I took first place for column or commentary writing.
While we didn’t win this year’s VPA sweepstakes award — Richmond Magazine earned that honor — we have plenty to be proud of. Our dedicated staff of professionals work incredibly hard behind the scenes every day to produce this award-winning monthly magazine and annual publications like the Virginia 500, Hampton Roads Business, Virginia Maritime Guide and StartVirginia, not to mention our daily online news coverage and our email newsletters.
As Virginia Business’ owner and publisher, Bernie Niemeier, is fond of saying, we are small but mighty. And I am fortunate to work with such a mighty talented group of people.