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Southern Virginia


Regional View


Averett program puts students on a flight path by Joan Tupponce


“There is a huge demand for pilots right now,” says Travis Williams,


chief fl ight instructor for Averett’s aeronautics program.


versity’s aeronautics graduates on their radar screens. Piedmont and


T ON THE WEB


Complete list of For the Record and People at


VirginiaBusiness.com FOR THE RECORD


The first phase in the creation of the Commonwealth Crossing Business Centre in Henry County is expected to be completed in late October, according to officials. Allyson Rothrock, president of the Harvest Foundation, said the project represents hope and opportunity. “We’ve never had anything close to this,” she said of the 720-acre business center that is designed to attract large- scale industrial projects. (Work It, SoVa)


Local nonprofits that have to handle an unexpected financial crisis may have help through new Agency Emergency Fund grants from the Community Foundation of the Dan River Region. These grants could provide assistance outside the foundation’s normal grant


PSA airlines, subsid- iaries of American Airlines Group, have started a cadet program with the Danville- based university. The partnership offers qual- ified students career paths leading them to become American Air- lines pilots. “There is a huge


cycle in the case of emergency situations that would have an impact on the nonprofit’s ability to provide services for its clients, Debra Dodson, exe cutive director of the foundation, said. (Danville Register & Bee)


Danville Regional Airport’s Taxiway A will be resurfaced for the first time in 20 years, thanks to a federal grant through the Federal Aviation Administration’s Airport Improvement Program. The $2.4 million grant will pay for milling and resurfacing of the taxiway and replace the lighting system along the taxiway. The FAA recommended the improvements after the taxiway was rated as being in “fair to poor” condition, according to a description of the project in the city’s capital improvements budget. (Danville Register & Bee)


16 OCTOBER 2016


wo regional airlines have Averett Uni-


demand for pilots right now,” says Travis Williams, chief flight instructor for Aver- ett’s aeronautics pro- gram. “Pilots have a mandatory retirement age of 65, and people are retiring. As a result, regional pilots are moving up. Regional airlines can’t fill the need they have.” Normally aero- nautics majors gradu- ating from flight pro- grams have 300 flight hours. To fly for Pied- mont or PSA, how-


Davenport Energy Inc. announced in August that it had acquired the customers of Lester-Penn Coal & Oil Corp. in Martinsville. Lester-Penn provided fuel oil and other products to homes, businesses and industry in the Martinsville-Henry County community. (Work It, SoVa)


Food Lion planned to close its Martinsville store in late September. The grocery store chain said it decided not to renew the lease for the building it occupies near the intersection of Commonwealth Boulevard and Virginia Avenue. Most — if not all — of the store’s approximately 35 employees would be offered jobs at other area Food Lions, company spokeswoman Christy Phillips- Brown said. She declined to say why the lease was not renewed, citing company policy. (Martinsville Bulletin)


ever, candidates need a minimum of 1,000 flight hours. “They have got to come up with 700 hours,” Williams says. “This is the reason for the partnership. Pied- mont and PSA hire students while they are in school and work- ing for Averett as flight instructors, building those hours. The min- ute they hit 1,000 they are employed by Pied- mont or PSA and go right into training for them.” After gaining


experience as regional airline pilots, Aver- ett graduates can tran- sition to American Airlines. Approximately 65


students are in Aver- ett’s 2016-17 pro- gram with the regional airlines. That num- ber includes about 27 incoming students. “I think the word is


Southern Co., based in Atlanta, said that its subsidiary Southern Power is in the preliminary phase of developing land for a natural-gas generating facility in Pittsylvania County. The company signed a purchase and sale agreement option in June with the Danville-Pittsylvania Regional Industrial Facility Authority (RIFA) for 300 acres of land in Berry Hill Industrial Park. Southern Power owns and operates nine combined-cycle and combustion-turbine natural gas-fueled power plants that generate more than 8,000 megawatts across four states. (VirginiaBusiness.com)


PEOPLE


Petrina A. Carter has been named to the board of the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research in Danville. She is


finally starting to get out that there is a great demand for pilots, and that is why we are see- ing an increase of stu- dents into the pro- gram,” Williams says. “There is a good future in aviation.” Averett was one


of the first schools to sign an agreement with Piedmont and one of the first 14 schools to sign with PSA. Two other Vir-


ginia schools, Liberty University and Hamp- ton University, offer bachelor’s degree pro- grams in aviation/aero- nautics. Liberty also has a partnership with Piedmont. “To start at Averett


as freshmen and flow all the way through to eventually becom- ing American Air- lines pilots is a unique opportunity for our qualifying students,” says Williams.


senior manager at the Virginia Employment Commission in Danville. (News release)


Ken McBride has joined The Lester Group in Martinsville as director of manufacturing for the fortress division. McBride has 20 years’ experience in management of manufacturing operations. (News release)


L. Michael


“Mike” Rowe Jr. has joined CCB Bankshares Inc. as senior vice president- residential market executive for


Clarksville and South Boston. Rowe has more than 30 years of community banking experience, with a focus on residential lending for the past 20 years. (VirginiaBusiness.com)


Photo courtesy Averett University


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