Julia Kell

Making Connections: Cumberland Plateau PDC Spurs Economic Recovery by Expanding Broadband and Helping Businesses

Facilitating economic recovery and business resiliency measures remain paramount goals for the Cumberland Plateau Planning District Commission (CPPDC) in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic as the organization prepares for community response activities in 2021. Since the start of the 2020 pandemic, CPPDC has worked to connect businesses within the region to important economic recovery…

Vibrant Virginia & Beyond Tackles the Urban-Rural Divide and Issues of Equity

The second event of the Vibrant Virginia virtual forum series, Vibrant Virginia & Beyond, brought together initiatives from across the U.S. who spoke about working to achieve shared prosperity in their communities. During the webinar, panelists discussed the role of higher education in addressing disparities, issues of equity, and the rural-urban divide. The first panel,…

An EDA Conversation with the West Piedmont Planning District Commission

The West Piedmont Planning District Commission serves the counties of Franklin, Henry, Patrick, and Pittsylvania, the cities of Danville, Martinsville, and the town of Rocky Mount. The West Piedmont PDC provides a variety of regional planning, technical assistance, and program services to member local governments, including regional planning/visioning activities; grant application assistance; land use planning;…

Food is Life…but is it a Living? Helping Build the Eastern Shore’s Land-Based Economy

The Eastern Shore of Virginia. Composed of two counties, Accomack and Northampton, it is home to the famous Chincoteague Pony and 439 bird species. Attractions such as the vehicle-free community on Tangier Island, Assateague Island National Seashore, and Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge are popular places to explore, bird, kayak, hunt, or fish. The region, with…

U.S. Economic Development Administration Awards Virginia Tech’s OED $300,000 in CARES Act Funding

On July 20, 2020, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) awarded a $300,000 Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Recovery Assistance grant to Virginia Tech’s Office of Economic Development (OED). The grant money will be used for activities that will help regions respond to the detrimental economic effects of the coronavirus…

Vibrant Virginia Community Conversation Focuses on Innovation Amid COVID-19

In a Vibrant Virginia Virtual Community Conversation focusing on economic resilience and responses to COVID-19, panelists discussed reopening in their localities, innovation in their fields, and plans for the future. The event, moderated by Dr. Margaret Cowell, associate professor of Urban Affairs and Planning at Virginia Tech, included panelists Charlotte Baker, assistant professor of Population…