Town of Gate City Participates in Main Street Training

by | Oct 8, 2015 | Press Releases | 0 comments

Virginia Main Street program highlights strategies on building a resilient nonprofit organization

South Boston, VA – On September 15-16, Allan “Cotton” Roberts,  Greg Jones, Town Manager, Rebecca Wagers, Events Coordinator, and Mark Freemen, Events Committee Member of the Town of Gate City, participated in a statewide Virginia Main Street training presented by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) in South Boston, Virginia.

The VMS program, managed by DHCD since 1985, works to revitalize Virginia’s historic downtowns by providing training and technical support. Participating communities improve and beautify their traditional downtown districts and encourage private investment, business development and tourism.

Approximately 70 representatives of downtown development organizations, local governments and nonprofit groups spent two intensive days exploring best practices and strategies to build a resilient and effective nonprofit organization. Topics discussed during the sessions included fund development, building consensus, maintaining the 501(c)3 status and telling your Main Street story.

“It is important for nonprofits to have a strong organizational foundation,” said speaker Emily Stumhofer, staff attorney with the Nonprofit Risk Management Center. “In order to complete mission-advancing work and avoid risks that would get the mission off-track, an organization must have financially sound practices, a good volunteer base, and a strong and engaged board.”

The Virginia Commonwealth University Center for Urban and Regional Analysis shared a recently-completed economic impact report that measured the benefits of having a Main Street organization in a community.

“Having strong economic impact data and being able to show your community the benefit of your Main Street program is vital to receiving local support,” said Helen Person, program manager for DHCD. “Telling your organization’s story to the community and visitors shows that you are having meaningful impact, and that it is something in which they would want to invest.”

Speakers at the event also discussed ways to craft, tell and share your Main Street story with the local residents and visitors alike.

Currently there are 25 designated VMS communities and 80 DHCD Commercial District Affiliates. The Town of Gate City is an affiliate member of the Virginia Main Street program and has recently formed a working group named the Gate City Frontier which is comprised of area business owners and civic organizations. The Town will be working with the Gate City Frontier to obtain a 501(c)3 status and a Main Street designation for the purpose of economic revitalization in downtown Gate City.

For more information about local downtown revitalization efforts or how you can help, contact The Town of Gate City at (276) 386-3831. To learn more about the Virginia Main Street Program, or for archived notes from this or any other VMS training, visit, or call (804) 371-7030.

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For Immediate Release:
September 21, 2015

Greg Jones (276) 386-3831
Town Manager

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