PMI Southwest Virginia Chapter

President's Message

Welcome to our PMI Southwest Virginia Chapter.

It’s a new year, new decade, and we are inspired that we continue to grow our membership year over year with over 350 members in the chapter today.  Founded in 2003, PMI Southwest Virginia continue to provide project management professionals in the area with best in class training, professional development and regional chapter events that are aimed to help you advance your skills and project management and stay well-informed to the latest resources and best practices in project management.  Our mission is to foster a community of Project Management excellence in Southwest Virginia.  In 2020, we are demonstrating this commitment with an investment in additional technology tools to allow for remote meeting participation in Blacksburg, Lynchburg, and Roanoke for chapter meetings taking place in other cities.


Taking on this initiative and many others, here is your new board as of January 1, 2020.


  • President – Emily Cohen, PMP, PMI-ACP
  • President Elect – Open Position
  • Past President – Paige Kanode, PMP, PMI-ACP
  • VP of Administration – Patrice Freeland PMP
  • VP of Finance – Chris Riha, PMP
  • VP of Marketing and Communication – Darryl Agee, PMP, PMI-ACP
  • VP of Membership – Dave Rakes, PMP
  • VP of Professional Development – Megan Adkins, PMP
  • VP of Programs – Carri Edminston, PMP 
  • VP of Technology – Heather Price
  • Director at Large – David Williamson, PMP, PMI-ACP
  • Director at Large – Looking for volunteers interested in joining the board 

Our board includes project managers with diverse backgrounds and experience with project management.  I am so excited to work with this team of volunteers this year.  If you are interested in joining the board, we always welcome additional Directors at Large and we will have a special election for the President Elect vacancy soon.  A special thank you to Mike Womack and Brian Blackwell for their work with identifying and nominating new members for the board this year.  Additionally, we are very appreciative to the many years of service from Brian Blackwell, Ragan Farris, and Kristen Gorman who all stepped down from board officer positions at the end of 2019. 


In 2020, we are committed to continuing our strategies to grow participation, align with PMI certification requirements, and provide an opportunity to network, expand skills and have fun.  This will include:


  • Welcome newly certified PMI members to PMI-SWVA and celebrate existing members at they achieve new certifications
  • Host monthly chapter meetings across the region showcasing a variety of venues, meeting formats and industries
  • Provide virtual chapter meeting participation in Lynchburg, Roanoke and/or Blacksburg through new technology investments
  • Grow the diversity of our partnerships and sponsorships with regional business partners, organizations
  • Offer additional opportunities to volunteer and give back to our communities through chapter events
  • Update our website to align with the broader rebranding efforts of PMI


I look forward to seeing you at our chapter meetings and annual symposium this year.  Please do not hesitate to contact me if you are interested in volunteering, have feedback to provide, or new ideas for the chapter.


Thank you for your membership and support of our local PMI Southwest Virginia Chapter.


Emily Cohen, PMP, PMI-ACP

PMI Southwest Virginia President

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