Isle of Wight County Schools recognizes businesses for their support

Published 11:06 am Wednesday, August 16, 2017


Isle of Wight County Schools nominated three businesses for inclusion in the Virginia School Boards Association (VSBA) Business Honor Roll program. The program is a way to acknowledge businesses that have supported local schools and divisions, especially during uncertain budget times.

The three business publicly recognized by the Isle of Wight School Board at their August board meeting were Farmers Bank, Liebherr and Smithfield Foods. Representatives from each business received a framed certificate and a wooden plaque, which was created using equipment in the Smithfield High School MakerSpace.

Liebherr Mining Equipment Company from Newport News was honored for providing extensive consultation, guidance and support on the establishment of new Career and Technology Education courses, including welding and warehouse logistics. Liebherr provided tours of their facility and shared knowledge on the skills students need for a career in those fields.

Cort Reiser, executive vice president, Manufacturing and Warehouse Logistics, represented Liebherr at the board meeting. Reiser has been actively involved with division’s planning for introducing a welding program and a warehouse logistic program.

Dick Holland, CEO and chairman of the board, represented Farmers Bank, which was recognized for being a long-time supporter of Isle of Wight County Schools. The bank has sponsored the division’s Teacher of the Year ceremony for many years. In addition, Holland personally gives his time each school year to participate in division events. His appreciation and respect for educators, as well as his heartfelt remarks, make him a popular guest speaker among employees.

During the 2016-2017 school year, Smithfield Foods made a significant financial commitment to the college, career and life-ready focus of the division. The corporation pledged $3 million as part of the Smithfield Legacy Project. The funding is earmarked for projects at Smithfield High School, including construction of a JROTC Fieldhouse, a Multi-Use Pavilion and expansion of the MakerSpace. Keira Lombardo, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs, represented Smithfield Foods.

In nominating Liebherr, Farmers Bank and Smithfield Foods for the VSBA Business Honor Roll program, the school board acknowledged the work of all three businesses in aiding the community on the goal of providing the best public schools possible for every child who attends them.

LYNN BRIGGS is Isle of Wight County Schools’ director of gifted services, community and media relations. She can be reached at 365-1611 or