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32 Hampton Roads Leaders Honored at the New Executive Welcome Luncheon

32 Hampton Roads Leaders Honored at the New Executive Welcome Luncheon
32 Hampton Roads Leaders Honored at the New Executive Welcome Luncheon
32 Hampton Roads Leaders Honored at the New Executive Welcome Luncheon
2019 leaders recognized during the 2019 New Executive Welcome Luncheon

"I am honored to recognize our new regional leaders at this annual event," said Bryan K. Stephens, President and CEO of the Hampton Roads Chamber, during opening remarks. The Hampton Roads Chamber is pleased to recognize the newest regional leaders during the 2019 annual New Executive Welcome Luncheon.

On Friday, November 1, new business, higher education, non-profit, military, municipal, and elected leaders enjoyed a special luncheon ceremony in their honor at the Founders Inn and Spa in Virginia Beach.

"Congratulations to all the honorees, and thank you for stepping into leadership and taking on leadership responsibilities in your communities and organizations," said Dr. Doris Gomez, Dean of the School of Business and Leadership at Regent University. Gomez encouraged those in attendance to lead courageously and said, "Leaders who know how to look ahead, anticipate the next trend or business model are what is needed." She also encouraged the audience to recognize diversity in their organizations and communities. "You can connect with people who are different from you. Great leaders recognize the amazing blessing and value in diversity and diverse networks."

Barb Smith, Partner at Cherry Bekaert CPA's and Advisors, praised the Hampton Roads Chamber during her presenting sponsor comments, "The Chamber is the leading business organization here in Hampton roads." Smith highlighted the importance of recognizing employees' and staff's achievements. "We recognize leadership, and that's why we, at Cherry Bekaert, are proud to sponsor this event."

Special thanks to WTKR/News3 Managing Editor and Anchor, Barbara Ciara, who was the event's emcee.

The Hampton Roads Chamber is proud to be the premier pro-business organization serving as an Impactful Advocate, Powerful Economic Partner, Inspiring Ignitor, and Regional Collaborator setting the conditions for businesses to succeed.

Congratulations to the following men and women recognized at this year's New Executive Welcome:


Captain John W. Hewitt, Commanding Officer, Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana


Michael Berlucchi, Virginia Beach City Council, City of Virginia Beach

Robert "Bobby" Dyer, Mayor, City of Virginia Beach

Dr. Larry "Chip" Filer, City Manager, City of Norfolk

Shannon E. Glover, City Council, City of Portsmouth

Robert J. Tajan, Director of Planning & Community Development, City of Virginia Beach

Higher Education:

Dr. Javaune M. Adams-Gaston, President, Norfolk State University

Chief Justice Mark Martin, Dean and Professor, Regent University School Of Law


Michele Anderson, President & CEO, United Way of South Hampton Roads

Reese Beeler, Executive Director, Tidewater Arts Outreach

Dr. Sharon Byrdsong, Acting Superintendent of Schools, Norfolk Public Schools

Michelle Ellis Young, Director, Retail Alliance Foundation

Gary Ryan, Executive Director, Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art

Anthony Walters, President and CEO, YMCA of South Hampton Roads


Rebecca 'Becky' Amos, Senior Mortgage Banker, The Elite Team by Tidewater Mortgage Services

Buffy Barefoot, President, Virginia Beach TowneBank

Elizabeth T. Beale, Executive Vice President/Chief Financial Officer, Old Point National Bank

Steven M. Byrd, Senior Vice President, Marketing Executive, Select Bank & Trust

Patti Darnley, Senior Vice President, Government Programs, Optima Health

Darius Davenport, Partner, Crenshaw, Ware & Martin, PLC

Jessica Fitzgibbons, Marketing Vice President, Prosper Insurance

Khaled Ghaly, Senior Vice President of Operations, Optima Health

Maeve Haynes, CEO, Ciniva

Tom Hazelwood, Office Managing Partner, Dixon Hughes Goodman LLP

Thomas Hotchkiss, Executive Vice President, Chief Credit Officer, Old Point National Bank

Gerald "Chip" McFall, Division President, Reinhart Food Service

Jessica T. Melton, Chief Operating Officer, Sentara Norfolk General Hospital

Eric Olsen, News Director, WTKR

Michael Platt, Complex Managing Director, Gold Key|PHR Marriott

Susan R. Ralston, Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, Old Point National Bank

Doug and Polly White, Partners, Gather

Thank you to our New Executive Welcome Sponsors: Cherry Bekaert LLP (Presenting Sponsor); Regent University (Host Sponsor); Langley Federal Credit Union (Member Spotlight Sponsor); Hampton Roads Workforce Council (Gold Sponsor); Inside Business and WTKR News3 (Media Sponsors); and Copy Connection (Print Sponsor).


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