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Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation announces new members, leaders

The foundation that raises funds to support the Blue Ridge Parkway has appointed new officers and members to its leadership teams.

The Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation announced Tuesday that former Regional President of US Foods Bob Stout had been elected chairman of the group’s board of trustees. He previously served as the vice chairman, a post that is now held by dry-stone waller and writer Whitney Brown. Retired finance manager Bob Lassiter will serve as the group’s treasurer, while Julie Moore will continue her role as secretary.

“I am looking forward to working with our dedicated leadership and staff to continue our support of one of our national treasures,” Stout said in a statement. “Helping to protect this national park unit and enhance the visitors’ experiences are our aspirations."

The 469-mile Blue Ridge Parkway is a U.S. designated National Parkway, stretching from Virginia’s Shenandoah National Park to North Carolina’s Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The foundation serves as a fundraising partner for the parkway in order to support initiatives such as historical and cultural preservation, environmental protection, visitor amenities and educational outreach.

The board and council also saw several additions that were announced Tuesday. Roberts Bass, David Huff and Sam Johnson will serve on the board of Trustees, with Deanna Ballard, Charles Hauser and Marsha Ralls Hershman joining the council of advisers.

The Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation also announced that Kevin Brandt would serve as the new development director for Virginia. Previously a project manager for the foundation, Brandt’s role will now include supporting community outreach and Virginia fundraising.

“I’m thrilled to be expanding my role with the Foundation, which will allow me to help my fellow Virginians connect and support the national park we all love,” said Brandt in a statement. “We are lucky to have such a special place in our backyards.”


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