be encouraged to pursue it. “I had never heard of Blacksburg,” she confessed. “I was from Maryland. Blacksburg seemed like the other side of the world to me, which in Virginia it almost is. So I said, okay, and I put resume together. Interestingly, a colleague of mine in the budget office told me that I should like that job. I interviewed. There were 114 candidates, and I was successful.”
Bonnie took the job in Blacksburg right on the cusp of the electronic dawn for the former sleepy little Montgomery County town. Known primarily as a college town, home of Virginia Tech, town officials often felt they were on the coat tails of the university. But this town and gown relationship was soon to change in a major way.
Bonnie explained, “We got tons of credit for the Blacksburg Electronic Village [BEV, early program to engage citizens as well as academics in the Internet and email communications] but we never could have done that on our own. I remember when it was being rolled out and I was part of the committee that was discussing how we were going to make this [BEV] public. There were still some technology glitches and it was like, ‘we cannot go public with
I consider Bonnie to be a wonderful mentor and advocate. She has a very approachable style and never over reacts to situations. She makes it easy for me to come to her with a challenging situation and know that she is going to consider it from all angles and give feedback that is practical and doable. She has such a wealth of experience in leadership that you know you can trust her judgement. As a leader, she makes it easy for us to follow her advice with a great comfort level that she is going to lead you in the right direction. Bonnie creates calm where others create chaos.
- Terri Proffitt
Downtown Executive Director
Lynch’s Landing, Inc.
I have known Bonnie for ten years and have worked closely with her on the board of the VLGMA for five years. Her leadership, work ethic, dedication, and initiative are unsurpassed. Bonnie has the ability to consistently see both the big picture and to focus on the operational details necessary to make VLGMA the premiere local government management associations in the nation. Bonnie is and exceptional professional who will be an effective and successful president of our association. I’m looking forward to working closely with her over the next year.
- Robert A. “Rob” Stalzer
Fairfax County
Deputy Executive