In Brief


Monte Carlo Night raises record $275,000

The Germanna Community College Educational Foundation’s 23rd annual Scholarship Monte Carlo Night set a fundraising record Saturday night at the Daniel Technology Center in Culpeper, raising $275,000 for scholarships for GCC students. The total smashed last year’s record of $220,000.

“When I tell presidents of other community colleges across the country how much this event raises, they go from disbelief to envy,” Germanna President David A. Sam told a crowd of about 200.

“The purpose of this event is to give students the resources they need to get an education,” said Culpeper businessman and GCCEF Board member Joe Daniel, who has been the driving force behind the event. “The people who get this aid need it and it’s last-dollar resources. This money truly is used to push these students over the top.”

Daniel told the crowd about Alisa Myers, who will graduate from the Germanna Scholars program on May 5 and has already been accepted to Shenandoah University’s pharmacology program. Myers has said she wants to come back to Culpeper to put the skills she gains to use helping the community.

“She’s just one of the many success stories,” Daniel said. “You ought to go to a Germanna graduation,” he added. “It’s one of the most uplifting experiences you will ever have. You will have parents and children, children and grandparents, graduate together.”

This was the final Monte Carlo Night for Sam, as president of GCC. He will retire at the end of June after more than a decade of leadership. His successor will be Janet Gullickson, who had been president of Spokane (Wash.) Community College, but Sam said it won’t be the last he and his wife Linda Zachmann Sam attend—that they plan to continue supporting GCC. “Our hearts will always be with Germanna,” he said.

“All of those of you who supported Germanna through the Great Recession, I thank you, and so do our students,” Sam said. “I know you will continue to support Germanna in this event and others as Janet Gullickson—who is, I’m happy to say, our first female president—comes in.”

History buffs wanted

Interested in History? If so, become a volunteer at the Museum of Culpeper History! We are searching for dedicated individuals who can donate a few hours as a front-line greeter/guide. Some weekend work required. Training provided. Make a difference in your own community and help visitors discover Culpeper. Call Gloria Cooper for information at 540-829-1749

Culpeper Renaissance names executive director


Culpeper Renaissance, Inc. (CRI)’s Board of Directors announced the appointment of Jessica Jenkins as Executive Director effective April 13. Jenkins comes from her former position of Program Manager of CRI.  She brings more than a decade of experience with the Main Street Program, background in the nonprofit sector, and grant and project management.   She has extensive knowledge in the National Main Street Center’s successful Four Point Approach for downtown revitalization.

“I am elated about the opportunity to continue working with this wonderful volunteer-led organization in this capacity,” states Jenkins. “2017 promises to be a year filled with community improvements projects, and partnership opportunities. I am eager to continue working with our incredible staff, volunteers, and partners who help us achieve our mission and goals. Culpeper Renaissance, Inc. plays a key role in improving our community and I look forward to continuing the good work this organization does for Culpeper.”

“Jessica has earned this job the old fashioned way, it’s been a real pleasure to watch her work and grow into the Executive Director position, she grabs every challenge and digs for the solution that best benefits Culpeper and all that live and work here. Much of the growth and success that CRI has realized the last several years would not have come to fruition without the leadership of Mrs. Jenkins,” said CRI Board President Steve Miller.

For more information about Culpeper Renaissance, Inc. please contact the CRI office at 540-825-4416 or

Climate Change discussion

Formed after the Women’s March on DC, Culpeper Persisters Huddle, is a local political action group. Timed to coincide with the Climate March in DC, they are holding a climate change event Saturday, April 29, at the Culpeper County Library located at 217 Southgate Shopping Center from 1-4 p.m.

A diverse group of local, regional, and internationally-renowned experts will discuss climate change and the importance of science in directing public policy and industrial practice from a variety of vantage points. Speakers include a retired senior planner at the Army Corps of Engineers, Institute for Water Resources who is now an independent water resources planner. Also, a retired Piedmont Environmental Council Senior Energy Policy Analyst. With the proposed third nuclear reactor on the horizon for Lake Anna, the benefits of thorium over uranium fueled reactors will be discussed. Resources promoting direct action, including information about regional commuter systems (Rappahannock-Rapidan Regional Commission), and a book club exploring titles relevant to the impact of climate change on wildlife will be available as well as hardwood seedlings complements of the John Marshall Soil and Water Conservation District and Friends of the Rappahannock. Contact

Give Local Piedmont is May 2

The fourth annual Give Local Piedmont event is next week on Tuesday, May 2 covering a four-county area. The first three years of Give Local Piedmont were smash hits, raising just over $2 million collectively for area nonprofits while increasing awareness for these organizations to much higher levels. This year’s event—running from midnight to 11:59 p.m. on May 2—includes 152 nonprofits participating for the first time. Having raised $157,514 more in 2016 than in 2015, it is apparent that Northern Piedmont citizens believe in this day of online community giving and are committed to its success. There were 1,228 first-time donors to the 2016 campaign.

The PATH Foundation has again generously provided a $100,000 bonus pool to be shared proportionately with all nonprofits according to their donation totals. An additional $30,000 in cash prizes donated by generous sponsors will be awarded as well.

Grand prizes will be awarded to nonprofits that have the highest number of unique gifts of $10 or more. Two sets of grand prizes in the amounts of $2,500, $1,500 and $1,000 will be awarded to the top three nonprofits (with operating budgets totaling less than or more than $250,000, respectively) that receive the highest number of unique donations of $10 or more. In addition, the 50/50 Early Bird Challenge will be awarded to the first five organizations to receive 50 unique gifts of $10 or more. Check their website for a host of other prizes. Social Media prizes of $100 will be presented to the first 10 organizations that post a picture of their staff, donors, or volunteers with a Give Local Piedmont sign or logo on Facebook.

Community Foundation executive director Jane Bowling-Wilson knows firsthand the potential impact such an event can have on a nonprofit. “From the nonprofit side, it is a fabulous opportunity to generate community awareness about your organization and what you accomplish,” says Bowling-Wilson. This one day giving event helps get the word out and is a great way to let others in our community know what you do.”

On May 2, all eyes will be on the Leaderboard at, which will post donation totals in real time throughout the day, beginning at midnight. Pledge to be part of this historic day that will benefit our incredible nonprofits, and by extension our community as a whole.


Waterloo Bridge update

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) closed Waterloo Bridge in January 2014 because of its deteriorating condition. Spanning Culpeper and Fauquier Counties discussions between the two counties and VDOT came to a standstill. Estimated repairs come in at around $4 million, a cost that could be shared or not. It’s on the list of “Virginia’s Most Endangered Historical Sites.”

At the time of its closing, public sentiment was favorable for saving the wrought iron truss bridge first erected in 1878 and later renovated in the early 1900s. VDOT will conduct a public hearing on Wednesday, May 17, at the Warrenton Community Center located at 430 East Shirley Avenue to discuss the future of the bridge that crosses the Rappahannock River connecting Culpeper and Fauquier Counties near Waterloo Road (Route 613).