Annual Board of Directors Election

The SVTC BoD election for class II is now over. To view a a list of SVTC’s current Board of Director’s please visit: https://svtc-va.org/svtc-board-of-directors/

The SVTC’s Board of Directors is divided into two groups, called classes, for governance purposes. Each year, the term of one of the classes expires. To prepare, the council (the members) holds elections in the spring of each year so that a new class of directors is elected and can be appointed by the board of directors before the end of the term on June 30th.

The spring 2020 Board of Directors election will concern class II of directors. The SVTC manages the nomination and election process via its Governance and Organization Committee, and all members, who are members in good standing on May 1, 2020 will be invited to vote. The term for the to-be-elected class II of directors will begin on July 1 and is 2 years long. 

A summary of the process:

  • The SVTC Organization & Governance Committee will receive suggestions for a new class II of directors through May 10, 2020. You can make a suggestion via the following form: Interest survey; SVTC BoD Class II. The list of candidates will then be evaluated, and later approved, by the Executive Committee and then the Board of Directors. For questions (or suggestions) please email the chair of the committee, Greg St.Ours.
  • The list of class II candidates and their biographies will be posted below in end of May/beginning of June.
  • Eligible SVTC members will be invited to vote using a special link that will be sent by email. Each member, whether individual or corporate, receives one vote per membership.

Listing of the full board of directors, and executive committee, 2019-20 (by class) (pdf)

Class II Candidates | Spring Board of Directors Election 2020

Kim Blosser | Lord Fairfax Community College | Middletown

Dr. Kim Blosser currently serves as the President of Lord Fairfax Community College (LFCC). LFCC was founded in 1970 and has four locations: the Middletown and Fauquier Campuses and the Luray-Page County and Vint Hill Centers. Lord Fairfax annually serves over 9,000 credit students, nearly 10,000 individuals in professional development and business and industry courses, and approximately 1,000 students in adult basic education and English-language instruction. Before becoming LFCC’s 5th President, Kim served as the Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs at Lord Fairfax. Prior to working at LFCC, she was a Dean of Mathematics, Science, and Technology, served as the Chief Information Officer, and was professor of information technology at Blue Ridge Community College. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and her Master of Arts Degree in Education from Eastern Mennonite University, and a Master of Science degree in Computer Information Systems and a doctorate in Higher Education Administration from Nova Southeastern University. Kim currently serves on the Luray-Page County Chamber of Commerce Board, the Virginia Council of Presidents, and the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia’s General Professional Advisory Committee.


Karen Bowman | Rockingham Insurance | Harrisonburg

JMU brought Karen Bowman to the Valley, and she has made it her home. After an initial career in education, Karen began a career at Rockingham Insurance where for over 20 years she has worked on leveraging technology to improve business processes. As Administrative Manager, she also directs project management at Rockingham and is currently managing a multi-year systems transformation project. She has been involved in the Shenandoah Valley Technology Council for many years and currently serves on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee. She wishes she had more time to visit grandchildren who live on Pacific time, loves living in the country, and enjoys history and travel.

Sarah Cheverton | JMU University Programs | Harrisonburg

Sarah E. Cheverton is the Assistant Coordinator of Online Learning at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia and current President of SVTC. At JMU, Sarah works in the office of the Vice-Provost of University Programs and reports to the Chief Online Learning Strategy Officer. She works with people from a wide variety of offices across the University as well as other institutions, state agencies, and national organizations in efforts to build and improve the online teaching and learning environment for today’s and tomorrow’s students. Prior to this position, for 17 years, Sarah led a central unit responsible for acquiring, managing and supporting various online learning technologies and faculty development services. She also teaches 2-3 sections per year of Using Computer Information Systems for the College of Business. Sarah has been active with SVTC for several years. She has served as a Board member since 2014, attends numerous events, and likes to talk with anyone about technology needs and interests in the area. Sarah earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Sociology from Lynchburg College in 1982 and a Master of Arts in Psychology/Industrial and Organizational Behavior from James Madison University in 1995.


Kai Degner (*) | JMU Professional and Continuing Education | Harrisonburg

Kai serves as the Director of Professional Development in JMU Professional & Continuing Education (PCE), administering programs such as the JMU Project Management Certificate, JMU Lean Six Sigma Green and Black Belt Certificate, and human resources certification preparation. Kai’s focus at PCE is noncredit professional skills and leadership development. Kai is enrolled in a doctoral program at James Madison University’s School of Strategic Leadership Studies, in the Organizational Science concentration.  His studies focus on communications and listening within organizations, and by leaders.  He is a double-graduate of JMU, receiving a bachelor’s degree in Integrated Science and Technology (’03) and a Masters in Business Administration (’05). He served on Harrisonburg City Council from 2009-16, and as mayor 2009-10. Through that role and others, he has served on numerous community and local government boards and commissions. He has attended many SVTC events over the years and has been an active participant. His previous employment includes 7 years as a full-time real estate agent, two years as executive director of the Arts Council of the Valley, and two years as a facilitator and trainer with the FairField Center. Kai’s personal entrepreneurial efforts focus on listening training for leaders and teams offered through his consultancy, Listening Campaign LLC (listeningcampaign.com).


Kathleen Gass (*) | Blue Ridge Community College | Weyers Cave

Kathleen Gass was born and raised outside of Pittsburgh, PA. Kathleen has a BS degree from Penn State University in Chemical Engineering. She worked in manufacturing at two pharmaceutical companies, Merck and Gilead Sciences, for over 18 years. Most of her experience was in technical operations, working on scaling up new products from research to large-scale manufacturing at sites across North America and Europe and then ongoing process troubleshooting. Kathleen has had the opportunity to move both physically and with different job roles and organizations over the years to enrich personal growth: Pittsburgh > Philadelphia > Newcastle, England > Philadelphia > Mountain View, CA > Philadelphia > Harrisonburg. Kathleen met her spouse at Merck when they both were sent to Mexico City to launch a new product. They’ve been married for 17 years and have 2 sons (rising 8th and 10th grade) in the Rockingham County school district. They moved to Harrisonburg in 2013, and Kathleen stopped working in 2014 to focus on her children and to better assimilate into the community. For the next 6 years, Kathleen volunteered heavily in the community. She worked as a CASA volunteer, Hope Distributed, and weekly at Cub Run Elementary school library. Kathleen has a passion for education and connecting all levels to industry which is why she decided to jump back into the workforce with the Regional Manufacturing Liaison position in January 2020. Kathleen is working to ensure that Blue Ridge Community College and James Madison University are providing curriculum and students that meet Merck’s ever-growing needs. The plan is then to extend out to the other manufacturing companies in the Valley to see if these solutions meet their needs, as well. If not, Kathleen will work to help close their workforce gaps, too. She is excited to be nominated and look forward to serving on the Shenandoah Valley Technology Council board of directors.


Jason Monroe (*) | Virtex | Waynesboro

Jason Monroe is employed with VIRTEX, one of the top electronic manufacturing companies for the military, aerospace, and medical sectors in the United States. With eight facilities his focal point is business development, along with corporate marketing & branding for five locations on the east coast. He specializes in bringing complex products and technology to market from concept to prototype to completion. He is currently co-chairman of the Staunton, Augusta and Waynesboro Education and Employer Coalition, bringing awareness and insight for business, education, and government collective collaboration for a brighter future for Shenandoah Valley students. He is a board member of the COVID19 Local Response Fund, providing grants directly to charitable organizations supporting the residents of Staunton, Waynesboro, and the counties of Augusta, Highland, and Nelson impacted by COVID-19 and the economic consequences of the current pandemic. He is also active in the forming of a new organization, the Valley Career & Technical Center Foundation, which will form partnerships for new educational equipment and school expansion. Once formed and operational, Jason will serve as the foundation’s first president. His involvement is not limited to community support but also creating a blueprint to bring more manufacturing and technology jobs to Waynesboro and the surrounding areas by facilitating multiple discussions on many platforms. I consider it an honor to be nominated to the Board of Directors for the Shenandoah Valley Technology Council. He will work diligently to facilitate networking and communications within local businesses, education systems, and local, state, and federal government contacts for the Shenandoah Valley Technology Council.


Mike Goertzen | Serco, Inc. | Harrisonburg

Mike Goertzen currently serves as Senior Program Manager with Serco, providing leadership to various Lines of Business relating to Intellectual Property and Immigration services. His primary work is with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) with additional programs on behalf of various domestic and international customers. Serco’s Harrisonburg based operations provide patent classification and search services where Mike provides oversight that enables highly trained Scientists and Engineers to analyze patent content and provide valuable analysis and data points for customers. He holds significant responsibilities across all functional areas, especially including financial management, process improvement, configuration control, human resources, and general governance support for this unique and highly successful program. He has been with Serco since the infancy of their first IP related contract in 2006. Since joining Serco, Mike has been the recipient of numerous professional awards, including Program Manager of the Year in 2016 and a Global Pulse Award in Innovation in 2019. He was also recognized as a PM Fellow in 2014 and completed Serco Leadership Fellowship at Oxford University in 2017. Prior to moving to the Valley, Mike worked as a secondary classroom teacher in Physics, Chemistry, Environmental Science, Mathematics, and Computer Applications. He received the Excellence in Education Award for Goshen, IN, and was named Teacher of the Year. Mike earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Natural Sciences from Bethel College KS and has since conducted graduate coursework at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana University, and Pittsburg State University. He completed his MBA at James Madison University, where was inducted into Beta Gamma Sigma and Golden Key International Honour Societies. He also maintains certification as a Project Management Professional (PMP) through the Project Management Institute (PMI). Mike has been an active SVTC Board Member for the past decade, with multiple terms of service on the Executive Committee. He also represents Serco and the SVTC on the Region 8 Council of GO Virginia and serves on the Explore More Discovery Museum Advisory Board. Mike resides in Harrisonburg with his wife, Elizabeth, and loves the Valley with all it has to offer.


Kurt Plowman | City of Staunton | Staunton

Kurt has been the Chief Technology Officer for the City for over 20 years, overseeing the City use of technology and a team of seven. He is also a Reserve officer with the Staunton Police Department and serves on the Board of the Wildlife Center of Virginia.

Alex Skinner (*) | InnoVault | Winchester

From an early career in forensic policing, Alex went on to study social anthropology at the University of Manchester (BSc) and later at the University of Cambridge (Ph.D.), with a concentration in economic anthropology. He is presently pursuing an MBA at Shenandoah University. Alex continues to wear several hats:  an emerging market real estate finance specialist, co-working and modular construction entrepreneur, ecosystem builder, and proprietary city pathbreaker.

In 2019 Alex founded InnoVault Inc., a co-working arts facility and venture production studio within an iconic bank building at the heart of Old Town Winchester. In doing this he drew upon experience scaling successful co-working spaces and ecosystems in inner-Asian emerging markets since 2010.

In commercial real estate practice, Alex founded and operated a boutique urban consultancy out of Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, since 2012. During his time at the head of this organization, he researched and authored three authoritative books on the Mongolian real estate sector. He also led over 30 high-profile investment analysis projects across the Asia-Pacific region – ranging from 5* hotels to affordable housing.

Alex is presently Treasurer and finance lead for ip_Haus. Based in New York, this construction-tech startup has developed a mobile prefab housing manufacturing platform, engineered to optimize value across the entire design, manufacture, build, and operation chain. Alex also contributes to Mongolia operations for California based startup Utopia Cities, an urban innovation group supporting emerging city innovation ecosystems.

With a career that meshes entrepreneurship, academia, and significant emerging market investment experience, Alex deploys a diverse skill-set and global network that he is eager to deploy to help scale businesses and drive ecosystem growth, even in challenging environments.


Bob Stolle | Center for Innovative Technology | Herndon

Bob Stolle is Senior Vice President of Policy and Regional Initiatives Center for Innovative Technology (CIT) where he is responsible for the development and execution of programs designed to grow the innovation and entrepreneur portions of Virginia’s economy. Bob came to CIT after three years as Executive Vice President and COO of Richmond-based Core Consulting and ten years as Executive Director of the Greater Richmond Technology Council. Prior to that, he served in several key positions for the Commonwealth of Virginia during the administration of Governor George Allen, including Secretary of Commerce and Trade where he was responsible for 15 state agencies and promoting economic and community development in the Commonwealth. Bob’s private sector experience includes service as engineering director and executive management for the global leader in military and space simulation and training systems. He was appointed to the Commission on Information Technology and the Virginia Research and Technology Advisory Commission where he chaired the Intellectual Property Committee. He is Vice Chairman of VirginiaFIRST which provides robotics programs and competitions for students at all levels of K-12. A graduate of the US Naval Academy, Bob served on active duty and in the Reserves as a Navy pilot and retired with the rank of Commander.

Brent Wilson (*) | Sproutly | New Market

Brent Wilson works for Sproutly in business development and finance. He is a Shenandoah Valley native – other than the four years he spent getting his business degree from Pacific Union College in California, this has always been home. Sproutly has been around for almost three years, specializing in software development, coaching, and media & design. Last year, we opened a South Carolina office. Brent, along with his wife and three daughters, recently moved to New Market, where he could walk to work if one was walking to work these days.


Ed Yoder | PBMares, LLP | Harrisonburg

Ed Yoder is a tax partner with PBMares. He has worked in public accounting for 23 years. Ed grew up in Kansas, graduated from Goshen College in Indiana, and spent four years living in Sarasota, Florida. His wife grew up in Harrisonburg and she moved them to the area in 2002. Ed worked for PBMares since 2005. In addition to being on the board of SVTC, he serves on boards of the following organizations: Park View Federal Credit Union, Massanutten Regional Library, Valley Baseball League, Crime Solvers of Harrisonburg and Rockingham County, Shenandoah Valley Children’s Choir, Rockingham County Rotary Club, and Park View Mennonite Church.

(*) Candidate is new to the board

Regional and State News

business resources and growth graphic

Shenandoah Valley Business Resources

We all know that Shenandoah Valley businesses and potential startups have been affecting during this time. Below, you can find information about two programs that provide access to resources for both startup companies and growing businesses.
COVID-19 Recovery Graphic

Local and State COVID-19 Recovery Funding

We know how many business and non-profits have been affected…
Forward Frederick County Logo

League $500,000 Allocated for Second Round of Frederick County, Virginia COVID-19 Business/Non-Profit Grant Program

Round Two of the Frederick County, Virginia COVID-19 Business/Non-Profit Grant Program will open on Friday, October 23, at 8 am. Grants of $5,000, $7,500, or $10,000 will be awarded to Frederick County businesses and non-profits adversely affected by the pandemic.

Governor Northam Allocates $30 Million in CARES Act Funding to Fast-Track Broadband Projects

Governor Ralph Northam today announced that Virginia is allocating $30 million in funding from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Recovery, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to improve broadband access in underserved localities.
Rebuild! VA Graphic

Rebuild Virginia: A Small Business Grant Program

The Rebuild VA Grant Fund is a program to help small businesses and nonprofits whose normal operations were disrupted by COVID-19. Businesses and non-profits that are approved for a Rebuild VA grant may receive up to 3 times their average monthly eligible expenses...
Business Reopening Guide Graphic

Shenandoah Valley Guide to Re-Opening Business

To ensure the safety of our community and to help you navigate the new normal, the Shenandoah Valley Partnership, local chambers, and the Business Resilience Task Force came together to create a re-opening business guide.
Bricks and Clicks Business Recovery Graphic

Bricks and Clicks: Small Business Recovery Program

Bricks and Clicks for Small Business Recovery is a three-part, partnership-driven small business assistance program. It offers training, customized technical assistance, and the opportunity to receive a grant.
Business Resilience Taskforce Graphic

Re-opening Small Business: What Customers Want

The Harrisonburg-Rockingham COVID-19 Business Assistance Taskforce distributed a “Customer Feedback Survey on Businesses Reopening"...
Free Virginia Wifi Hotspots Map

Virginia Wifi Hotspot Map | Free, Publicly Available Wifi Hotspots

With the help of local officials, schools, and libraries across Virginia, the Commonwealth Connect team and Virginia Tech have developed an interactive map of free, publicly available wifi hotspots that Virginians can access from a vehicle...