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Dr. Charles King Honored with 2018 Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy

MEDIA CONTACT: Jeffrey Kraus, Asst. Vice Chancellor for, Public Relations, (804) 592-6767,

Dr. Charles R. King, president emeritus of Southwest Virginia Community College (SWCC), has received the 13th Annual Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy. He was nominated for the award by SWCC.

“It was an honor to nominate Dr. Charles King for this recognition,” said Dr. Tommy Wright, the current president of SWCC.  “He founded Southwest Virginia Community College and successfully led the institution of higher learning for forty years. He left an indelible imprint on the college that remains today and we still follow the advice he gave to those around him to follow the, ‘5 Ps of Success, Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance’.  He remains an avid supporter of the college.”

Dr. King is a legend in higher education in the southwest region of Virginia,” said Susan Lowe, executive director of the SWCC Educational Foundation.  “At the age of 32 he began his forty-year tenure as the president of SWCC. During those years, the college expanded from one building, Buchanan Hall, into a campus of eight buildings. Today, the college still remains the first choice college of the majority of our residents who choose to go to a Virginia state college.”

Dr. King was one of more than two dozen individuals, families, and businesses from around Virginia who earned the 2018 Chancellor’s Award for Leadership in Philanthropy. The awards were presented at a recent luncheon ceremony in Richmond.

Hosted by the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education (VFCCE), the 13th annual event honors leading philanthropists from each of Virginia’s 23 community colleges as well as the statewide foundation. This year’s class of distinguished philanthropy leaders has contributed a combined total of $6 million dollars to Virginia’s Community Colleges.

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.’”

About Virginia’s Community Colleges: Since 1966, Virginia’s Community Colleges have given everyone the opportunity to learn and develop the right skills so lives and communities are strengthened. By making higher education and workforce training available in every part of Virginia, we elevate all of Virginia. Together, Virginia’s Community Colleges serve more than 252,000 students each year. For more information, please visit

About the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education:  Working hand in hand with Virginia’s 23 community colleges, the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education seeks to guarantee financial assistance to all students who dream of attending college. The foundation is building an endowment that is already generating interest to provide full scholarships to selected community college students; helping more Virginia foster youth pursue and complete higher education through the Great Expectations program; and leading a partnership to improve rural Virginia’s education pipeline through the Rural Virginia Horseshoe Initiative. Learn how the Virginia Foundation for Community College is building the future of Virginia. Visit

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