In The News

A Day in the VSH Life

May 26, 2015

Meet Board Member Anne Thomas Hines

Richmond native Anne Thomas Hines joined VSH’s board last August, and she’s quickly proved her passion for our mission and commitment to serving others. Mrs. Hines chairs the Mission Advancement Committee in Richmond, and is also chairing the auction event for Find Art Doors to be held in October. She also recently hosted VSH’s first celebration of our “Pillars of Hope Society” that recognizes sustaining donors.

Mrs. Hines’ dedication for serving those less fortunate kicked in long before her VSH orientation; it’s been part of her inner drive for as long as she can remember. In fact, when asked if she could outline her ideal day in Richmond, she simply said she would love the opportunity to spend several hours every day working with the under-served in the community.

Finding that time was hard to do while raising three children and working fulltime running an interior design business and an antiques store—which she and her husband operated for 43 years before closing last year. Somehow, she still managed to fit it in her volunteer work.

In fact, Mrs. Hines has also served on the Boards of Freedom House, the Peter Paul Development Center and FeedMore. Even now, while wearing many hats serving VSH, she still runs her interior design business.

What keeps her going? Knowing that serving non-profit organizations makes a difference.

“When students from impoverished neighborhoods go on to higher education, we knew we made a difference,” she said.  “When food makes its way to nourish children and ‘shut-in’ seniors, we’ve made a difference.”

At VSH, Mrs. Hines can see that difference every time she interacts with clients. Last December, she attended VSH’s annual Christmas luncheon at St. James’s Episcopal Church.  “I looked across the room and saw clients sharing family photos with her,” said Andrea Butler, VSH’s senior director of mission advancement. “She is genuinely interested and engaged with people from all walks of life, and they took to her like bees to honey.”

“Sharing a meal and conversation with a formerly homeless individual is possibly the best way to feel the mission of VSH,” added Mrs. Hines.

“No one wants to be homeless,” she said. “No one wants to live under a bridge or beg on street corners in the freezing cold or hot summer. By using a proven solution to homelessness, we are addressing the needs of the most vulnerable individuals in our community. We are making a difference.”

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3 Blocks to Home

May 6, 2015

A recent video created by the Hampton Roads Community Foundation gives a first-hand look at what it’s like to reclaim your life after homelessness. Check it out here:

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Give Local 757

April 22, 2015

On May 5th & 6th from noon to noon, the Peninsula, Southeast Virginia and Suffolk Community Foundations will host the second annual Give Local 757, the largest fundraising event in Hampton Roads for over 150 local nonprofits.

For 24 hours with just a minimum of a $10 donation online (  or in person (at any Langley Federal Credit Union Branch) citizens can give to Give Local 757 nonprofits that serve the Hampton Roads region. Donations will be amplified with matching funds and prizes!  Communities are encouraged to choose a cause, give great and help transform their communities by supporting causes they are most passionate about. We hope we can count on your support of VSH during this two-day challenge!

For more information, please visit


Council Furthers Commitment to Ending Homelessness in the City–The Daily Progress

January 21, 2015

The Charlottesville City Council approved two resolutions Tuesday reaffirming a commitment to ending homelessness in the area. $150,000 will be granted to a statewide nonprofit agency and $105,000 to a local charity group to support short- and long-term housing solutions for the city’s homeless population.

The additional funding will help accomplish the city’s goal of increasing the ratio of supported affordable units to 15 percent by 2025, as outlined in the city’s 2010 Affordable Housing Report. The ratio was estimated most recently to be at 10.29 percent, according to a Neighborhood Development Services housing report from April.

Housing development specialist Kathy McHugh presented both resolutions to the council Tuesday night and said she was “absolutely excited” to secure support for both organizations. McHugh also serves on the executive board of the Thomas Jefferson Area Coalition for the Homeless.

“It’s going to be a great project,” McHugh said. “It coalesces nicely, very nicely with the other agencies reaffirming support.”

Read more.

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VSH Elects New Officers

December 12, 2014

The Board of Directors of Virginia Supportive Housing elected the following slate of officers at its meeting on Dec. 2, 2014:

President: Susan Siegfried, Esq.
Community Volunteer

Vice President: Jim Banta
President, James Banta Corp.

Treasurer: Christina Dondarski Waller, CPA
Controller, Power Distribution Inc.

Secretary: Houston Gray
The Houston Group, LLC

Ms. Siegfried has served on the Board since 2009, most recently as vice president and chair of the governance committee. She formerly was an assistant attorney general in Virginia, and served as senior counsel for the Virginia Housing Development Authority. She received her Certificate of Achievement in Nonprofit Management from Virginia Commonwealth University and the Partnership for Nonprofit Excellence in 2012, and was in the 2013-2014 class of the Emerging Nonprofit Leaders Program sponsored by VCU and the Partnership for Nonprofit Excellence.

Russell T. Aaronson, who served on the Board for seven years and was president for the last two, will continue to serve on the executive committee as immediate past president. He is the executive vice president and general counsel for GrayCo, Inc.

In addition to Ms. Waller, Charmaine Rochester, PhD, CPA, vice president of finance for Bon Secours Hampton Roads joined the Board,. She will serve on the finance committee.

New appointees earlier in 2014 include Anne Thomas Hines, owner of Thomas-Hines Interiors in Richmond, and Stacy Brinkley, executive director of Hospital Hospitality House in Richmond. Both serve on the mission advancement committee, which Ms. Hines will chair in 2015.



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