Thompson Hospitality donated $1 million to Virginia State University this month. The gift is the second-largest gift in the school’s 128-year history.
Thompson Hospitality is the largest, minority-owned food service company in the U.S. The Herndon based company has more 3,200 employees and provides meals and facilities management at businesses and institutions in 45 states and four foreign countries. Ruby and Fred Thompson, Sr., parents of current company leaders Benita Thompson-Byas, Senior Vice President; Fred Thompson, Jr., Chief Administration Officer; and Warren Thompson, Chairman and President, both earned degrees from VSU.
Warren Thompson said VSU was a natural beneficiary of the company’s success. “The foundation started at VSU,” he said. “We wanted to make a statement of support for education in Virginia. What better place than VSU?”
Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell joined VSU President Keith T. Miller in accepting the Thompson gift. Governor McDonnell said the company exemplifies the private support necessary to help advance higher education. “Thompson Hospitality represents 30 years of successful entrepreneurship,” he said. “We’re thrilled they’re headquartered in Virginia.”
Richmond Area Ahead of the Nation in Mentoring
This year, President Obama named January as National Mentoring Month. But for the past 28 years, the Richmond Foster Grandparent Mentor Program has helped thousands of children by providing personal mentoring along with the caring support of Foster Grandparents. The program is still sponsored by Senior Connections, a private, nonprofit organization established in 1973 that provides direct services, information and referral, education and advocacy for seniors and caregivers in the Greater Richmond area. The Mentor Program has almost 50 mentors, age 55 and older, serving more than 100 youth in the Greater Richmond area. The Program is currently enrolling mentors to assist local youth with their development. For more information, call Jeanette Salley, FGP Volunteer Resource Coordinator at 343-3022 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. www.seniorconnections-va.org
The Links Host a Book Club for Youth
As part of the Richmond Redevelopment and Housing Authority program of events, the Links hosted a Book Club Celebration for youth during the holidays. The group read the Nutcracker Book and held a Holiday Bazaar, where participating students chose gifts for family, wrapped gifts, and received goody bags and refreshments. The Links are a national non-profit organization of primarily professional African American women who offer community service, civic, cultural and educational projects through local chapters.