Sep 11, 2020 • 8M

September 11, 2020: CBIC hands out annual awards at virtual gala

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Regular updates of what's happening in local and regional government in and around Charlottesville, Virginia from an award-winning journalist with nearly thirty years of experience.
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Today’s Patreon-fueled shout-out is for Abundant Life Ministries, “working hard to create a better future for the Charlottesville community.”


Today the Virginia Department of Health reports another 1,115 cases of COVID-19 and another three deaths. The seven-day average for positive tests dropped to 7.5 percent. There are another 53 cases reported in the Thomas Jefferson Health District, with 34 of those from Charlottesville and eleven from Albemarle. 

Yesterday, the University of Virginia updated its COVID-19 tracker with data from Wednesday, and reported another 25 cases for a cumulative total of 282 since August 17. Of those, 238 are students. The tracker also reports six percent of quarantine rooms are in use, as well as one percent of isolation rooms.  


Charlottesville may soon be close to hiring someone to run the department that oversees planning within the city’s 10.4 square miles. Earlier this year, the director of the Neighborhood Development Services was demoted as part of a reorganization ordered by City Manager Tarron Richardson and a new person has not yet been hired. City Councilor Lloyd Snook gave this update on the process at Thursday’s meeting of the PLACE Design Task Force.

“There is a person, and some of you may have been involved with the interview process, who had some video interviews and zoom interviews and apparently where we stand with that right now is that that person would like to come to Charlottesville actually physically before deciding to take the step,” Snook said. “This person has familiarity with Charlottesville over thirty years but not currently.”  

Snook told PLACE he has been frustrated by an inability to enact many of his campaign platforms because of COVID-19 and because of “difficulties of what’s been going on in City Hall.”  (watch the PLACE meeting)

City Council is having a special meeting at 1 p.m. today to discuss a personnel matter.


Last night a local group that promotes tech companies in the Charlottesville area handed out its annual awards at a virtual gala. Chiedo John, a software engineer at GitHub, served as the master of ceremonies for the Charlottesville Business Innovation Council’s 2020 celebration of the tech community.

The first award went to Ting for Business of the Year.

“Ting has been serving Charlottesville for over five years and from our inception, CBIC has been our conduit to the start-up, innovator and technology infrastructure that fuels the Charlottesville business community,” said Kara Chandeysson of Ting while accepting the award. 

The Educator of the Year Award went to Dominique Morse, youth entrepreneurship facilitator of Albemarle County's Murray High School and Community Middle School. 

“To you that means a person that comes in and works with your children on design and also taking those designs and potentially turning that into a business or just thinking about the entrepreneurial aspect of how something I’m doing in school can affect the community,” Morse said. 

The CBIC Entrepreneur of the Year went to Cynthia Adams of Pearl Certification.

“We make home value visible through a platform that collects data on energy efficient and renewable features so that homes can appraise for more at resale or re-fi,” Adams said. “We launched Pearl Certification and currently are headquartered here in Charlottesville because this community is so supportive when it comes to clean tech, sustainability and entrepreneurship.”

The Innovator of the Year went to Welld Health, a division of ACAC. 

“Welld Health is an innovative software platform that was built from scratch here in Charlottesville and is designed to make prevention sustainable,” said Chris Craytor. “How do we as a country live a healthier lifestyle and how do we make sure we have the prevention we need to avoid the health care that we don’t want is accessible for all.” 

The Top Jobs Creator of the Year was to go to “a technology or tech-centric business for its noteworthy achievement of generating secure well paying, primarily tech jobs and retaining highly skilled workers.” This year that went to Commonwealth Computer Research Inc, or CCRi. 

“We were not expecting this, this is a big surprise, we’ve only been a tech company in Charlottesville for 31 years,” said Julia Farill, director of people operations at CCRi. “That’s not long enough, is it?” 

The CBIC Partnership of the Year award this year is sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce and was introduced by President Elizabeth Cromwell.

“The CBIC Partnership of the year award recognizes new partnerships built in the last 18 months that model collaborative innovation and achievement that inspires others,” said Elizabeth Cromwell, president of the Chamber. 

This year’s prize went to New Hill Development Corporation and the Fountain Fund for their work on financial literacy.  Here is Yolunda Harrell of the New Hill Development Corporation. 

“We are so excited about the partnership we have with the Fountain Fund,” Harrel said. “Part of our role at New Hill Development Corporation is to focus on financial capability. Everyone is capable of achieving the financial dreams that they would like.”

The Social Good Award went to Antwon Brinson for Culinary Concepts. 

“Culinary Concepts was designed as a solution for folks that are in the food and beverage industry that are looking for a step up,” Brinson said. “There’s a lot of folks that don’t want to go to culinary school but they found themselves in this industry and they’re looking for certifications or some type of foundational training to elevate their skills to be able to move up the ladder. So I designed this program to give people the foundational skills they need to grow.” 

The Start-Up of the Year went to Cardboard Live, a firm that seeks to transform the board game experience. The Student Entrepreneur of the Year went to Roman Bohuk of MetaCTF

“We have some exciting things coming up in October,” Bohuk said. “October is Cyber Security Awareness Month so a lot of our clients are looking to do things, and run trainings.”  

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