NRV Communities Win Grants to Expand Broadband Access

NRV Communities Win Grants to Expand Broadband Access

New River Valley, VA – Broadband access is quickly expanding across Virginia’s New River Valley. Two projects in the region were awarded grant funding from the Virginia Telecommunication Initiative (VATI) to expand broadband to unserved households. These grants were part of an announcement from Governor Northam earlier this week. This most recent initiative to expand broadband across the commonwealth “will advance Virginia 90% to the goal of achieving universal access to broadband and high-speed internet, placing Virginia on track to being one of the first states successfully charting a path to universal access to broadband.”

In addition to the grant funding from VATI, each project leveraged private and local investments as well. Here is more information about the two broadband projects that were funded in Virginia’s New River Valley:

New River Valley Regional Commission and Gigabeam and All Points Broadband
$68,355,355.00 Award
$67,370,008.00 Leveraged

The project will build fiber broadband to 19,966 unserved locations and achieve universal coverage in Bland, Montgomery, and Pulaski Counties.

Floyd County and Citizens
$1,310,267.00 Award
$1,111,725.00 Leveraged

The project will build fiber broadband to 723 unserved locations and achieve universal coverage in Floyd County.



Read the Governor’s press release listing all of the grant winners across Virginia here.

Learn more about efforts to expand broadband access in Virginia’s New River Valley here.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

VTCRC Announces New Lab Space and Collaboration with Johnson & Johnson

VTCRC Announces New Lab Space and Collaboration with Johnson & Johnson

Brett Malone, President and CEO of the VTCRC, on December 15, 2021

Brett Malone, President and CEO of the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, at the announcement press conference on December 15, 2021. Photo courtesy of the VTCRC.

Montgomery County, VA – The Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center (VTCRC) announced today that GO Virginia has awarded the research park a grant to “fund the expansion of laboratory space and facilities aimed at supporting the region’s growing life science industry.” The VTCRC will develop a shared lab facility in Blacksburg with a coalition of stakeholders including Montgomery County, Carilion Clinic, and the City of Roanoke. These stakeholders will also design a larger facility in Roanoke.

The shared lab space facility at the VTCRC in Blacksburg will be called COgro LABS and “is designed with 25 accessible lab spaces in a turn-key facility. The facility will help meet a need for flexible lab space from small- to early-stage companies, making starting and building a biotech company a little bit easier.”

“Through collaborations, we aim to fill the demand from biotechnology companies and provide full access needed to support research to commercialization aspirations. Our sophisticated infrastructure makes us a research destination across industries and for everyone from startups to enterprise companies.”
– Brett Malone, President & CEO of the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center

In addition to this new lab space, the VTCRC has established a new collaboration with Johnson & Johnson LLC to “provide early-stage innovators in the region with access to their virtual residency program which includes expert mentoring, programming and resources offered through Johnson & Johnson Innovation – JLABS.” Up to five companies will be selected by JLABS and the VTCRC to participate in the JLABS virtual residency program during the first year of the collaboration.

“Montgomery County is pleased to provide support to this partnership, which demonstrates our commitment to biotechnology growth in the New River and Roanoke Valleys. We look forward to working with the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center and the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute to promote recognition for our region as a biotechnology hub.”
– Craig Meadows, County Administrator for Montgomery County.

The VTCRC’s new shared lab space and its collaboration with Johnson & Johnson will enhance opportunities for biotech companies and startups in Virginia’s New River Valley.

Read the press release about this exciting announcement from the VTCRC here.

Learn more about COgro LABS and the VTCRC here.

Learn more about industries in Virginia’s New River Valley here.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

Radford Wins Grant for High School Students to Earn IT Degrees

Radford Wins Grant for High School Students to Earn IT Degrees

Radford, VA – Radford City Schools recently was awarded a Career and Technical Education High School Innovation Grant for students to earn associate’s degrees in information technology. The grant was one of seven programs funded around the Commonwealth of Virginia with the purpose of “prepar[ing] students for high-wage, in-demand careers.”

Radford City Schools partnered with New River Community College and 1901 Group to create this program for students.

Here is what the governor’s press release has to say about the grant:

Radford Public Schools — $90,000 to create – in collaboration with New River Community College and the 1901 Group – a pathway for students to earn an associate degree in information technology.

Read the full press release to learn more about the Career and Technical Education High School Innovation Grant program and see the other grant winners here.

Learn more about the growing information technology sector in Virginia’s New River Valley here.

Learn more about Radford, a community in Virginia’s New River Valley here.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

NRV Cybersecurity Initiatives Featured in Virginia Economic Review

NRV Cybersecurity Initiatives Featured in Virginia Economic Review

New River Valley, VA – Cybersecurity education initiatives from two of the New River Valley’s higher education institutions were featured in an article in the Q3 2021 issue of the Virginia Economic Review. The article, titled “Bridging Cybersecurity Gaps”, detailed unique cybersecurity initiatives from universities across the Commonwealth of Virginia. Programs and research projects from Radford University and Virginia Tech were both included in the article.

The article highlighted Radford University’s transdisciplinary approach to cybersecurity education. The university’s Center for Information Security (CIS), led by Director Prem Uppuluri, “provid[es] faculty with tools and skillsets necessary to teach cybersecurity through a broader perspective.” Beyond the CIS, other university faculty are focusing on developing curriculum to help K-12 teachers learn about cybersecurity and doing research on “securing IoT [Internet of Things] devices”.

Virginia Tech’s cybersecurity initiatives featured in the article included the new Tech4Humanity Lab. This lab, run by Professor Eric Jardine, is “examining the effects of media coverage around drug market closures on the ensuing level of dark web searches for drug-related activity.” In addition, the article highlighted a project led by Professor Ali Mehrizi-Sani to “support power grid operators’ shift to 5G communications”.

Read the full article from the Virginia Economic Review and learn about Radford University and Virginia Tech’s cybersecurity initiatives in more detail here .

Learn more about higher education in Virginia’s New River Valley here.

Explore the tech sector in Virginia’s New River Valley here.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

NRV Tech Companies Make Inc. 5000 List of America’s Fastest-Growing Companies

NRV Tech Companies Make Inc. 5000 List of America’s Fastest-Growing Companies

Montgomery County, VA – Two NRV tech companies made the Inc. 5000 list for 2021. These annual rankings by Inc. magazine list the “fastest-growing private companies in the United States” and are a “hallmark of entrepreneurial success”. According to Virginia Business, only 310 companies across the state of Virginia were included on this prestigious list.

Here are the two NRV companies that made the 2021 Inc. 5000 list along with their rankings:

#4,606 Modea: 56% 3-Year Growth
#4,712 Harmonia Holdings Group: 51% 3-Year Growth

This is the third time Modea has been ranked on the Inc. 5000 list since 2010. Harmonia Holdings Group has made the Inc. 5000 list eleven times since 2009.

Read more about the history of the Inc. 5000 rankings here.

See the full Inc. 5000 list for 2021 here.

Learn more about the fast-growing tech sector in Virginia’s New River Valley here.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small-town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

Blacksburg High School Among Top 100 STEM High Schools in U.S.

Blacksburg High School Among Top 100 STEM High Schools in U.S.

Montgomery County, VA – U.S. News & World Report ranked Blacksburg High School as one of the Top 100 Best STEM High Schools in the United States for 2021. BHS came in at #94 on the list.

STEM stands for the disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. To create the list of the Best STEM High Schools, “U.S. News looked at the top 1,000 public schools from our latest Best High Schools rankings, and then evaluated their students’ participation and success in Advanced Placement science and math tests.”

Blacksburg High School also moved up nine spots from last year to rank #21 among public high schools in Virginia. In addition, U.S. News and World Report ranked BHS #981 out of the nearly 18,000 public high schools ranked in 2021. This means Blacksburg High School is ranked among the top 6% of high schools nationally.

See U.S. News and World Report’s rankings of Blacksburg High School here.

Learn more about education in Virginia’s New River Valley here.

Learn more about Blacksburg, a town in Virginia’s New River Valley, here.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small-town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

NRV Tech Industry Highlighted in Virginia Economic Review

NRV Tech Industry Highlighted in Virginia Economic Review

Montgomery County, VA – The Virginia Economic Review recently highlighted the NRV tech industry in an article titled “Virginia’s Smaller Metros Prove Fertile Ground for Tech Headquarters”. The article features some of the tech companies headquartered in Virginia’s New River Valley, such as Modea, Torc Robotics, and Ozmo, and why they chose to base their businesses in the region.

The article also highlights the business advantages that the New River Valley has to offer tech companies. As Ozmo’s CEO David Catalano stated when the company’s expansion was announced in 2019, “Our proximity to Virginia Tech provides us with a unique advantage of access to top talent, while also being able to offer exceptional quality of life for our employees.”

Click here to read the Virginia Economic Review’s article about the tech industry in Virginia’s smaller metros.

Click here to learn more about the tech industry in Virginia’s New River Valley.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small-town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

2020 NRV Announcements Highlighted in Virginia Business

2020 NRV Announcements Highlighted in Virginia Business

New River Valley, VA – Three major 2020 NRV business announcements were recently highlighted in Virginia Business magazine. The article, titled “A Diversified Portfolio”, describes the announcements and their impact on the region. The article also discussed the state of the manufacturing and tech sectors in Virginia’s New River Valley during the COVID-19 pandemic using data from Onward New River Valley’s recent Industry Competitiveness Surveys.

Learn more about three 2020 NRV business announcements included in the article below:

Read the full article from Virginia Business here.

See more business announcements from Virginia’s New River Valley here.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small-town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

Qualtrax One of Best Places to Work in VA

Qualtrax One of Best Places to Work in VA

Montgomery County, VA – According to Virginia Business magazine, Blacksburg-based Qualtrax is one of the best places to work in Virginia. The tech company was featured on the magazine’s 11th Annual Best Places to Work in Virginia List. This is the fourth consecutive year that Qualtrax was included in the “Small Employers (up to 99 U.S. employees)” category.

Virginia Business worked with Best Companies Group out of Pennsylvania to compile the list. Employers were evaluated on categories such as number of paid holidays, retirement benefits, diversity training, and telecommuting options for employees. After evaluating the employers and compiling a list of the top 100 in the Commonwealth, Virginia Business then divided the list into categories for large, medium, and small employers.

See all the companies on the 2021 Best Places to Work in Virginia list here.

Learn more about Qualtrax’s previous honors on the Best Places to Work in Virginia list from 2020, 2019, and 2018.

Learn more about Qualtrax and the information technology industry in Virginia’s New River Valley here.

Explore more accolades won by NRV counties, city, towns, and universities here.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small-town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”

Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.

NRV Accolades and Awards in 2020

NRV Accolades and Awards in 2020

New River Valley, VA – Throughout 2020, the New River Valley was frequently recognized for its outstanding lifestyle amenities, business growth, and educational opportunities. The region is truly a premiere destination to live, work, and do business. Below is a list of just a few of the accolades won in 2020 by the counties, city, towns, and universities that comprise Virginia’s New River Valley. Pulaski is 2nd Most Affordable Place to Buy a Home in VA High Quality of Life Floyd Voted Top Tiny Adventure Town 2020 Abundant Outdoor Amenities Harmonia Recognized as one of Virginia's "Fantastic 50" Expanding and Developing Businesses Exelaration Ranked #3 Best Tech Internship by Vault Educating Tomorrow’s Talent RU Ranked #33 Southern Regional University by U.S. News & World Report Top Tier Colleges & Universities Explore more accolades won by NRV counties, city, towns, and universities here.

Correction: September 1, 2021: This blog post was corrected to reflect that Pete Dye River Course was ranked #19 in the top 50 golf courses in Virginia for 2020. A previous version of this article incorrectly stated the course was ranked #18.

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Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small-town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.” Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.