Sharing the Helm


As a state that was formed out of rebellion and has overcome many challenges, the past 150 years for West Virginia have been momentous in many ways, from civil war to natural resource exploration to economic challenges to now a period of revitalization.  As we look toward the future, West Virginia has a tremendous opportunity to create a new “GOLDEN AGE” of progress and prosperity for its citizens and communities.  For this to be achieved, we must develop shared leadership among generations, communities, and different sectors of our Mountain State.

For a ship at sea, the HELM is what guides it through good and bad times.  In West Virginia, the “ship” of our state is best represented by our historical and gorgeous mountains hence the HELM (top) of the Mountain is where we figuratively guide the future of our state.  This year-long series is focused on looking toward West Virginia’s future and no other sector in West Virginia would be more concerned about our state’s future than philanthropy and foundations. By our basic existence, foundations and the collective philanthropic sector are institutions created to invest in today for the benefit of the future, working for the long-term benefit of our citizens and communities.

Focusing on the next 150 years, Philanthropy West Virginia is gathering short opinion pieces from established and rising leaders focusing on key issue areas for the state. The contributions presented via this project do not reflect the opinions of Philanthropy WV, but those of the contributor.

MEDICAL & HEALTH:  For lifelong success and a strong quality of life, our citizens need an effective health and medical sector as well as citizens that take care of themselves.  West Virginia is fortunate to have dynamic, dedicated, and innovative healthcare leaders serving our communities.  It is an honor to have established medical leader Dr. Dan Foster, who is a physician and former state legislator, and rising leader Dr. Lisa Costello, internal medicine and pediatrics resident at West Virginia University, sharing their perspectives on ensuring WV has a strong and healthy future. We thank both Drs. Foster and Costello for their contributions.

Established Leader: Dr. Dan Foster, Physician and former WV Legislator “Improving Heathcare for a Healthy Economy” CLICK HERE
Rising Leader: “Improving Healthcare for a Healthy Economy” CLICK HERE

HIGHER EDUCATION:  Our state’s future relies heavily on the quality of our Higher Education System.  We are honored to have established leader in Higher Education Dr. James Clements, Former President of West Virginia University, and rising leader in Higher Education Dr. Brian Hemphill, President of West Virginia State University, providing their perspectives on higher education’s future and role in providing prosperity for our citizens and state throughout the future.  Our thanks to President Hemphill and President Clements for providing their perspectives with the following contributions:

Established Leader: Dr. Jim Clements, former President of WVU “Invest in Education” CLICK HERE
Rising Leader: Dr. Brian Hemphill, President of WV State University “A Futuristic Look at West Virginia” CLICK HERE

PUBLIC SERVICE:  One of the key players in our state’s future are the decisions, vision, and actions taken by our Public Servants.  We are honored to have our senior U.S. Senator John “Jay” D. Rockefeller, IV as an established leader and WV House of Delegates Member Amanda Pasdon, 51st District in the WV House of Delegates as a rising leader contributing to our inaugural kick off of the series.  Our thanks to Senator Rockefeller and Delegate Pasdon for contributing to this special series with the following:

Established Leader: U.S. Senator John “Jay” D. Rockefeller, IV “A Call to Public Service” CLICK HERE
Rising Leader: WV House of Delegates Member Amanda Pasdon “Public Service: Our Next 150 Years”CLICK HERE