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Junior Achievement veteran named president of the local JA affiliate

Junior Achievement veteran named president of the local JA affiliate

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A former executive of Junior Achievement affiliates in Virginia and in the Carolinas has been named president and CEO of Junior Achievement of Central Virginia.

Tamara Ridenour started her new job at the local nonprofit on Monday. The local Junior Achievement affiliate promotes work readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy to K-12 students in nine Richmond-area school districts.

She replaces Daphne Martin, who had overseen operations of Junior Achievement of Central Virginia as its top executive for the past nine years. Martin announced in July her planned departure.

Ridenour brings 27 years of nonprofit experience, including serving in roles with three different Junior Achievement affiliates and with two different colleges.

She was president and CEO of Junior Achievement of Virginia’s Piedmont affiliate in the Lynchburg area from 1999 until 2006.

She started her career with Junior Achievement in 1993 as a marketing manager and later as senior marketing manager for Junior Achievement of Southwest Virginia in the Roanoke area.

In 2006, Ridenour became vice president of Junior Achievement of the Central Carolinas, where she led the organization’s development and operations efforts, and oversaw its branch operations in Wilmington, N.C., Asheville, N.C., and three counties in South Carolina.

Ridenour returned to Virginia in 2011, where she served initially for five years as senior director of development at Mary Baldwin University in Staunton. In 2016, she was named Mary Baldwin’s associate vice president for university advancement.

Since November 2017, she has been the associate director of major gifts for Virginia Tech in the Washington, D.C., region.

“Ridenour’s extensive experience will be invaluable to the organization,” said Benny Bowman, president of Worth Higgins & Associates and chairman of the board of directors of Junior Achievement of Central Virginia. “We are pleased to have her running our operation. The leadership Tamara will provide will help ensure the future success of JA in the Richmond area.”

Junior Achievement of Central Virginia offers programs to about 25,000 students in public and private schools in the Richmond area. The organization had nearly 2,400 volunteers teaching classes about business education to students.

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