Jenny Crittenden, Executive Director to the Gloucester Main Street Preservation Trust, gave a presentation to approximately 150 attendees at Governor Terry McAuliffe’s Summit on Rural Prosperity at the Tides Inn Resort on September 26 and 27.
The conference, presented by the Center for Rural Virginia, was widely attended by Virginia General Assembly senators and delegates; local politicians and elected officials and business owners and community leaders.
Crittenden was asked to be a part of a panel discussion on entrepreneurism and gave an opening presentation that highlighted her and her husband’s business, Heart 17 Produce, Inc., an 150 acre produce company that ships to major food chains and to also share about the growth and services provided by the Main Street Preservation Trust to local entrepreneurs.
A memorable moment during Crittenden’s presentation was when the entire audience applauded as she relayed that Gloucester’s Main Street program, due completely to the vision and generosity of Edwin & Adrianne Joseph, is the only financially self sustaining model in the nation.
“I am just the one who is lucky enough to get up every day and enact their vision and work with our entrepreneurs.”
Crittenden’s presentation ended with highlighting the very successful Launch Gloucester Program that was initiated in 2015 that yielded six new or expanded businesses in the downtown providing seven full time jobs and 21 part time jobs, as well as more than $454,000 in public/private investment.
The program was made possible by a $100,000 grant from the Department of Housing & Community Development that was awarded to the Trust after a state wide competitive process.