First Bank & Trust Co. of Abingdon has been honored with the prestigious Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy for its generous contributions to Virginia Highlands Community College.
William Hayter, president and CEO, accepted the award from Dr. Glenn DuBois, chancellor of Virginia’s Community Colleges, during a recent luncheon ceremony in Richmond. He was accompanied by other members of the bank’s leadership team, as well as VHCC President Gene C. Couch Jr., and Laura Pennington, who leads the VHCC Educational Foundation.
“It is a privilege to accept this award on behalf of First Bank & Trust Company,” stated William H. Hayter, President and CEO. “Virginia Highlands Community College is an important part of our community, and this community has been good to us. Bringing students and the community together is our way of giving back and saying ‘thank you’.”
The award recognizes First Bank & Trust’s long-standing support to VHCC. Over the past decade, the company has provided $150,000 to the College through generous donations and sponsorships of campus events. Additionally, company leaders have provided in-kind support by serving as members on VHCC boards and committee that directly support educational opportunities in the service region.
First Bank & Trust was one of more than two dozen individuals, families, and businesses from across the Commonwealth honored for a philanthropic spirit that supports the programs and services of Virginia’s Community Colleges. The 13th Annual Award Luncheon was hosted by the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education (VFCCE). This year’s class of distinguished philanthropy leaders has contributed a combined total of $6 million dollars to community colleges throughout Virginia.
Keynote speaker Paul Koonce, executive vice president & president and chief executive officer with the Power Generation Group, Dominion Energy, called the community college system “one of Virginia’s greatest inventions.” He also borrowed a passage from a 1903 Teddy Roosevelt speech to underscore the invaluable connection between higher education and opportunity.
“’Far and away, the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing. Our purpose (as donors) is to make sure that prize – meaningful work – the best prize that life offers, remains within reach of every Virginian.’”hy Hale