Advisory Board Bios
JERRY COXManagement Consultant, North State Consulting Service
Jerry, a native of Hillsville, Virginia is a proud alumnus of Virginia Tech having earned a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration in 1974 and a master’s degree in Urban Affairs in 1978. Jerry had an extensive career in local government management in North Carolina and served as a city manager for several municipalities within North Carolina. He retired in 2008 and continues to remain involved as a consultant for local governments and non-profit agencies through his offices in Charlotte and Mount Airy, NC. In 2015, Jerry created the Jerry E. Cox Leadership in Local Government Scholarship to build leadership and management skills in local government and to encourage future generations to pursue careers in local public service.
BARBARA FAVOLAState Senator, Virginia’s 31st District
Senator Barbara Favola represents Virginia’s 31st District, which stretches along the Potomac River from Fort Myer and the Pentagon to Arlington and into the east end of Loudon County.

Senator Favola and her husband, Doug Weik, have lived in Northern Virginia for nearly 30 years. Their son Donald Patrick (DP) is a senior at George Mason University. He attended and graduated from Virginia public schools, where Barbara volunteered and was active in the PTA.

Prior to her election in 2011, the Senator served on the Arlington County Board for fourteen years and chaired that body three times. During her service with the County, Senator Favola was the Board’s leading advocate for children, youth and families. She supported the creation of teen lounges for young people, established mental health services in the public schools, provided a permanent home for the Head Start program and forged a community Partnership for Children, Youth and Families.

She has been a vigorous supporter of human rights and environmental stewardship, including protecting the Chesapeake. Senator Favola is Chair of the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments Chesapeake Bay Committee. The Committee, established in 1998, tracks developments under the federal-state Chesapeake Bay Program for implications to local governments and recommends Bay-related policies to COG’s Board of Directors.

In 2012, Senator Favola was appointed to the Executive Board of the Women’s Legislative Network of NCSL (National Conference of State Legislators) as the Democratic Representative for the Southern Region. She was given a 100% rating from the Virginia League of Conservation Voters and NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia for her efforts during the legislative session to support the environment and women’s rights, respectively. She also received the Virginia Peters Nonprofit Friend of the Year Award from the Housing Association of Nonprofit Developers (HAND).

DENNIS R. DEANUniversity Distinguished Professor, Virginia Tech
Joining the faculty at Virginia Tech in 1985, Dean has been involved in both undergraduate and graduate instruction, offering courses in general microbiology, gene regulation, and laboratory applications. His teaching and service has extended outside the university with participation in the development and oversight of the Fralin outreach program, which serves thousands of high school students each year. He has been actively and continuously engaged in professional service throughout his career, having served on numerous peer-review and site-visit panels and chaired and organized international conferences, including two Gordon Research Conferences. Dean also served as acting Director of the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, with primary responsibility for oversight of laboratory design and financial management between 2008-2009.
Dean’s research is recognized worldwide. He has published more than 160 articles and he currently serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Biological Chemistry and has recently served on the publications board for the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. He has received extramural funding to support his research since 1975, including awards from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, and Office of Naval Research. Dean received his bachelor’s degree from Wabash College and was a pre-doctoral National Institutes Trainee at Purdue University where he earned a Ph.D. in molecular biology. He was a National Institutes of Health postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Wisconsin and began his independent scientific career at the Kettering laboratory.

Dean is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a University Distinguished Professor, and Stroobants Professor of Biotechnology. He received his Ph.D. in Molecular Biology at Purdue University and his undergraduate degree from Wabash College.

James MoranFormer Congressman, US House of Representatives
James (Jim) P. Moran is a Senior Policy Advisor with Nelson Mullins.

Jim is a former US Congressman who served Virginia’s northern Virginia congressional district from 1991 to 2015 and is well known for his abilities to work across the aisle and resolve complex issues.

While in Congress, Jim was a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee, served as chairman and ranking member of the Subcommittee on the Interior and Environment, was a senior member on the Defense and Military Construction Subcommittees, and served as a member of the Steering and Policy Committee for the House Democratic Leadership.

As ranking member of the Subcommittee on the Interior and Environment, Jim oversaw the budgets for the Environmental Protection Agency, the Interior Department, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Forest Service, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, the Smithsonian, the Kennedy Center, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum and the National Endowment for the Arts and the Humanities. As a senior member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, he oversaw all aspects of the defense budget, including weapons procurement, cybersecurity, innovative research and development, military medical research, military base closures, civilian personnel and overseas contingency operations.

Among major projects in Northern Virginia, Jim helped obtain $1.5 billion for extending Metrorail to Dulles, $2.5 billion to replace the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, and hundreds of millions of dollars in support of Virginia schools, health centers and support services for the needy. He added 20,000 military personnel to his Congressional districts in the latest round of military Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission (BRAC) closures.

Prior to his run for Congress, Jim was the mayor of Alexandria, Virginia from 1985 to 1990 and was a member of the City Council from 1979 to 1984. Prior to running for office, he worked at the US Department of Health, Education and Welfare as a budget officer, then became a senior specialist for budgetary and fiscal policy at the Library of Congress. In his final non-elected position, he was senior staff of the US Senate Committee on Appropriations.

He receive his MPA from the University of Pittsburgh and his BA from the College of Holy Cross.

Congressman Moran is currently Chair of the Fort Monroe Authority, is an Advisory Board Member on both the National Children’s Museum and the Brady Campaign Against Gun Violence, serves on the International Conservation Caucus Foundation and the Government Blockchain Association and former Chair of the World Affairs Council.

Minnis RidenourSenior Fellow for Resource Development, Virginia Tech
Mr. Minnis E. Ridenour served as Executive Vice President of Virginia Tech Foundation Incorporated since 1987 and served as its Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Ridenour came to Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (the university) in 1974 as the university’s Budget Director and Chief Business Officer and also served as its Vice President for Finance until 1987. Since May 2001, he served the university as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Ridenour also served as Executive Vice President of the Virginia Tech Foundation and serves on the boards of other university related corporations. He began his career as Assistant Administrator with the United Methodist Homes and Health Care Facilities of the Holston Conference. He was employed in Marketing Research and Planning with the First Union National Bank in Charlotte, North Carolina, and also held positions as Data Analyst, Research Associate, Coordinator and Director of the Office of Institutional Research at The University of Tennessee. Mr. Ridenour served as President of the Greater Blacksburg Chamber of Commerce; President of the Council for Finance and Administration, Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church and also served on the Pensions Board of the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church. Mr. Ridenour served as Chairman of the board of directors of Rocco, Incorporated and the Montgomery Regional Hospital. He has been a Member of Advisory Board at Comprehensive Computer Solutions, Incorporated (CCS) since 2005. He serves on the board of directors of Petroleum Marketing, Incorporated (PMI). He serves on the Virginia United Methodist Homes Board. He has been a Trustee of Virginia Health Care Foundation since July 2006. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in financial management for governmental and non-profit organizations. Mr. Ridenour serves as President on the board of directors of the Eastern Association of College and University Business Officers (EACUBO); as a member of the business affairs executive committee for the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges; and on the board of directors for the Science Museum of Western Virginia. He is a member of the board of directors for the Western Virginia Foundation for the Arts and Sciences; and is a member of the 2001 NACUBO Research Universities Council (National Association of College and University Business Officers). He is Senior Fellow for Resource Development at Virginia Tech. Mr. Ridenour received both his bachelors’ degree, in marketing and retailing and his master’s degree, in public finance and higher education administration, from The University of Tennessee.
Lynn SchnurrExecutive Consultant, General Dynanmics Information Technology
Ms. Mary Lynn Schnurr is currently an Executive Consultant to General Dynamics Information Technology. She held the position of Vice President, Defense Intelligence from February 2013-September 2017. Ms Schnurr retired in January 2013 after 34 years of federal government service, including 32 years in Army Intelligence. She was the Army Intelligence Chief Information Officer for the Deputy Chief of Staff, G-2 (DCS, G-2) and Director of the Intelligence Community Information Management Directorate. Ms Schnurr played a pivotal role in providing operational and technical advice on infrastructure and intelligence community information management/information technology (IM/IT) endeavors. She formulated the strategic management and integration of Army Intelligence IM/IT systems with the Joint, National, and Intelligence Community intelligence IM/IT systems. She was a recognized senior leader who proactively led Army Intelligence to IT consolidation and centralization aligning to the IC’s Intelligence Technology Efficiency initiatives. Her focus was on long-range strategies and new trends in technology development providing accurate and timely support to tactical, operational, and strategic-level operations throughout Army. She has served as an IM/IT professional in a variety of positions in Army Intelligence since she began her Army career as an intern in 1981. Prior to her position with the Army she was an educator and a member of a congressional staff.
Ms Schnurr has been active in mentoring college students at Virginia Tech by speaking and attending formally conducted leadership events and mentoring Women’s Volleyball players one on one who are looking for careers in Intelligence, Information Technology and Law Enforcement. She recently became a Virginia Tech School of Public and International Affairs Board Member.
Brent BlevinsSenior Policy Advisor, Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, US House of Representatives