TCC Real Estate Foundation Board
The TCC Real Estate Foundation Board is a dynamic cross-section of the real estate industry in South Hampton Roads, from development to banking to legal to construction to architecture.
Prescott Sherrod is the President/CEO and Owner of PEMCCO, Inc., a minority owned systems integration, installation, and management services firm. Mr. Sherrod has over 20 years of systems design, engineering and installation and management experience in the Department of Defense, Port/Maritime, and Transportation/Transit industries. His corporate office is located in Virginia Beach, with remote presence in Norfolk, VA, Arlington, VA, Rochester, NY, Long Island City, NY and West Point, NY. He is a graduate of Virginia State University with a B.S.E.T., and received his Master’s in Engineering Management from The George Washington University. Mr. Sherrod’s passion for community and minority business interests is evident in his involvement and affiliations on both local and state levels. He serves as the Immediate Past Chair of the Minority Business Council, a Commissioner of the Virginia Beach Development Authority (VBDA); member of Virginia Beach Public School’s General Advisory Council for Technical and Career Education; Past President of the Hampton Roads Chapter of the Conference of Minority Transportation Officials (COMTO), Chairman of the Transportation DBE (Disadvantage Business Enterprise) Advisory Committee (TDAC); Hampton Road Citizen’s Transportation Advisory Committee (CTAG), and was appointed to the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Small Business Advisory Board (SBAB), representing the 2nd Congressional District. Mr. Sherrod and his firm are affiliated with a number of other professional associations related to his company’s professional interests.
W. Christopher Harvey
Vice Chair & Director
W. Christopher Harvey currently serves as Executive Vice President of Construction/Business Development. Mr. Harvey has served as Executive Vice President of Development of Armada Hoffler since 2010 which included the oversight of Alliance Hospitality, Armada Hoffler’s joint-venture with Crestline Hotels and Resorts, which was created to develop multiple hotel and hospitality projects around the country. Since joining the firm in 2002, Mr. Harvey’s previous positions within Armada Hoffler included Director of Business and Hotel Development, Development Coordinator, and Project Engineer. Mr. Harvey received a B.A. in government from the University of Virginia and an MBA in management and business development from the Kogod School of Business at American University.
James K. Spore
Secretary & Director
Jim Spore is president and CEO of Reinvent Hampton Roads, a community leadership initiative focused on generating high-paying, satisfying jobs to underpin a vibrant economy. He retired in 2016 after serving the City of Virginia Beach for 24 years as its city manager.
Mr. Spore was instrumental in the development of the TCC Virginia Beach Campus, forging an enduring and positive partnership between the college and the city. In 2001, TCC and Virginia Beach Public Schools opened the 134,000-square-foot Advanced Technology Center. In 2005, Mr. Spore was key to the development of the Joint-Use Library, which comprises the services, programs and collections of both a public and academic library. Under his leadership, the City of Virginia Beach purchased 6 key parcels and conveyed them to the college at no cost to enable future growth and implement a shared vision for higher education in Virginia Beach.
Mr. Spore holds a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Colorado and bachelor’s and master’s degrees in urban planning from the University of Illinois.
Understanding that cooperation between civic leaders, citizens and investors is fundamental to the success of any comprehensive plan, Mr. Saunders dedicates his energy to shaping public initiatives that will produce long-term benefits for communities. One of the firm’s current projects is the new ODU art museum.
Burrell Saunders is CEO and co-founder of Saunders + Crouse Architects of Virginia Beach. The firm has provided master planning, urban lifestyle architecture, open-space designs, parking strategies and avenues for public input for a number of major projects, including Virginia Beach’s Town Center.
Mr. Saunders has planned and designed four major town centers and over 50,000 acres of mixed-use properties across the Mid-Atlantic. He is a member of the American Institute of Architects and the International Interior Design Association.
With over 25 years of experience in Economic Community Development, Steven Wright currently serves as Director of Economic Development for the City of Chesapeake. Steven has a B.S. degree in Urban Studies and Planning from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA, and is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma’s Economic Development Institute. This is his second stint in Chesapeake, having served as a Business Development Manager from 1994 to 1999. Before returning to Chesapeake, Steven was Economic Development Director for Isle of Wight County. Additionally, he has worked in the communities of Richmond, Portsmouth, Suffolk and Chesterfield County, VA.
Ken Stepka is chairman emeritus on the Board of Directors of Clark, Nexsen, Owen, Barbieri & Gibson, P.C. Before retiring as chief executive officer of Clark, Nexsen in 2011, Mr. Stepka had been with the company for nearly half of its history, advancing up the ranks and holding key leadership positions. He has 46 years of extensive experience in project management, subcontract administration and client interface. Stepka became general manager of the Clark, Nexsen headquarters in Norfolk in 1985 and was named an executive vice president in 2000. He holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering from Old Dominion University.
Jane Short, Founder and Principal of JRS Consulting LLC, has been a trusted financial advisor for more than 20 years. Ms. Short founded JRS Consulting in January 2021, having previously held senior positions at Waypoint Advisors, U.S. Trust, and UBS Financial Services. She understands that wealth means different things to different people. She appreciates that every family has unique and sometimes complex challenges and loves facilitating conversations between generations about family values. Ms. Short assists families with every aspect of their wealth management; especially business succession, estate planning, and philanthropy.
Gordon E. Parker, Jr.
Gordon E. Parker, Jr. is Founder and Managing Partner of Heritage Business Strategies. A lifelong resident of Coastal Virginia, Mr. Parker’s roots are in Suffolk.
As an Investment Adviser Representative for Eagle Strategies LLC, and a member agent of The Nautilus Group, a service of New York Life Insurance Company, a resource initiative of professionals from the legal, accounting, and financial disciplines, Mr. Parker works with successful business owners, executives, professionals, and individual families. He also assists in insurance risk management, portfolio management, and most importantly, having meaningful relationships with people that love their family, their community, and like to have fun.
Dr. Marcia Conston
Dr. Marcia Conston became the sixth permanent president of Tidewater Community College on Jan. 6, 2020.
Dr. Conston has worked in higher education for more than 30 years. She began her career as the Director of Institutional Research at Jackson State University in Mississippi in 1987.
In 1994, she became the Vice President for Institutional Effectiveness at Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina. In 2001, she became the Vice President for Enrollment and Student Success Services at Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte, North Carolina – the position she held for nearly 20 years.
Dr. Conston has also taught throughout her career, serving as a part-time associate professor at Benedict College in 1995-96, and as an adjunct instructor at Wingate University for two years beginning in 2012. As an evaluator for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), Dr. Conston evaluated 14 institutions for reaccreditation, including two Virginia community colleges.
She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Jackson State University; a master’s degree from Hood Theological Seminary in Salisbury, North Carolina; and a doctorate from the University of Southern Mississippi.
“I am humbled and honored to be selected as the next president of Tidewater Community College and look forward to using my experiences to help students achieve their full potential,” Dr. Conston said. “I am grateful for the opportunity to work with the esteemed TCC faculty and staff, as well as, engage with educational, business and industry partners.”
John D. Padgett
John D. Padgett is an ex officio member of the board, representing the TCC College Board. Mr. Padgett was appointed to the Tidewater Community College Board by the Norfolk City Council in 2011. He is the managing partner of McGuireWoods’ Norfolk Office whose expertise in advising corporate clients on a wide range of issues is matched by his commitment to myriad South Hampton Roads civic and philanthropic organizations.
A native of Norfolk, Mr. Padgett received his Bachelor of Arts with Distinction from the University of Virginia and his J.D. from the Washington & Lee University School of Law.
He has given of himself to, among others, local organizations including the Hampton Roads Economic Development Alliance, of which he is chair; Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce and the Hampton Roads YMCA, both of which he served as chair; and the Rotary Club of Norfolk, of which he is past-president. Mr. Padgett has also previously served as the chair of the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia.
Dorcas Helfant-Browning, of Virginia Beach, is a managing partner and principal broker with Coldwell Banker Professional Realtors and former chair of the State Board for Community Colleges, as well as former president of the National Association of Realtors. In 1992 she received an honorary PhD in the humanities from Commonwealth College of Virginia. Ms. Helfant-Browning has been an active volunteer in her community and was named Hampton Roads Woman of the Year in 1990. She is a past chair of the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce and the Virginia Chamber of Commerce. She was also past president of the Virginia Aquarium Foundation, past board member and board chair of Tidewater Community College, past chair and Ex-Officio member of Tidewater Community College Real Estate Foundation, and past chair of the Tidewater Council Boy Scouts of America.
Dr. Lee Armistead is Director Emeritus of the TCC Real Estate Foundation. Appointed to the TCC College Board by the Portsmouth City Council in 2008, he served for many years as the College Board’s representative to the Real Estate Foundation Board. He stepped down from the College Board in 2016 at the end of his term.
Dr. Armistead has served TCC and his native South Hampton Roads as an educator and community leader for almost four decades. After 13 years as a teacher in the Chesapeake Public Schools, he became an administrator and ultimately retired with 31 years of total service. Not long afterward he began a second career with TowneBank.
After receiving his undergraduate degree in business from Frederick College – a predecessor of TCC — Dr. Armistead went on to earn a master’s in business from Virginia Commonwealth University. He then earned a certificate of advanced graduate study and a doctorate in education with a major in educational administration from Virginia Tech.
In addition to his ample volunteer leadership in higher education, Dr. Armistead completed two terms on the Portsmouth Parks and Recreation Commission, including a three-year tenure as chair.
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