The Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools selected its first female superintendent Tuesday by unanimous vote.
Beverly Emory, 56, will be the sixth superintendent to lead the state’s fifth-largest school district, which was created when city and county school systems merged in the 1963-64 school year. Emory, a North Carolina native, comes to Forsyth County from the Pitt County Schools, where she has served since 2006.
Click here for the complete article from the Winston-Salem Journal.
WXII/ Channel 12 reports on the incoming Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools superintendent here.
For this final entry in the “three most pleasant surprises” series, I was inspired by a recent walk through Downtown Winston-Salem. As I passed our local Arts Council offices, the first Arts Council in the nation, I tried to think of what other organizations, companies, brands or innovations started here. I knew there were quite a few, but I did not know that early autumn stroll would yield such a surprisingly long list.
The area is well known for its heyday as a corporate and manufacturing center for tobacco and textiles industries. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company revolutionized production techniques that transformed the industry. The Hanes family name long ago achieved megabrand status worldwide for quality and value. Both companies spawned brands that became (and many still are) household names.
But when you look beyond those two industry giants, you find other brands, companies and technologies that have worked their way into daily life in markets around the world.
Take Krispy Kreme, for example. In 1937, long before Manhattanites lined up around the block for “hot doughnuts now,” Vernon Rudolph punched a hole in the wall of his doughnut bakery to sell fresh, hot, glazed Krispy Kremes to passersby.
A colleague working in Winston-Salem once went on a business trip to Dallas and brought back a bottle of Texas Pete thinking he had snagged an authentic Lone Star State souvenir—only to find that the iconic hot sauce is, and always has been, made right here in the Twin City by Garner Foods.
As for breakthroughs in technology, especially in life science, see the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine where laboratory-grown tissue and organs are developed for use in organ transplants and other therapies for humans.
Forsyth Technical Community College continues to lead the way in revolutionizing workforce training for biotechnology, nanotechnology and advanced manufacturing industries.
While the examples above may grab more headlines, Inmar Inc., which began here in 1980 as a coupon company, has become a superstar among any business relying on retail or online transactions. This growing Winston-Salem company now processes a digital coupon every second of every day.
There are more brands, companies and innovative “firsts”—too many to list here, in fact—that started in or around Winston-Salem. Add all of the well-known companies coming into the area like Caterpillar and Herbalife or that have a significant presence like BB&T and Wells Fargo, and you end up with a list of businesses and institutions that never fails to surprise even the most knowledgeable local business leader or economic development professional.
What surprises you most about Winston-Salem?
Share your ideas here.
While vacationing and visiting family in a few different places around the Eastern U.S. this past summer, the second surprise came to me almost as soon as I got back home to Winston-Salem.
I had an early meeting that was “all the way across town” from my house. And on the mere 15-minute commute that morning, I recalled just how much more difficult the commute would be if I were living anywhere else. Then I started thinking about the other aspects of life in our area that would be different.
While the morning commute provides an obvious contrast to other, larger metro areas, the “easy” factor extends to many other areas that set Winston-Salem apart from just about anywhere else.
For instance, Winston-Salem received a #10 ranking for affordability and fun in a recent Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate report along with the #10 spot in Kiplinger’s annual list of cheapest U.S. cities in which to live.
Of course, a shack in the woods can be an affordable place to live. The amazing part is what Winston-Salem has to offer in terms of amenities, schools and access to other markets, while being an affordable place to live.
People here enjoy a thriving arts community, including various festivals, theater companies and a respectably broad local music scene. A revitalized downtown keeps the streets active while cozy urban and suburban neighborhoods offer a close sense of community and familiarity.
And since Winston-Salem is so well connected to other cities and markets, it’s easy to get away for business or pleasure. More importantly, it’s even easier and more enjoyable to come home again.
Look for the next surprise in Part 3, coming soon. You can read Part 1 here.
What surprises you about Winston-Salem? Share your ideas here.
Winston-Salem has been ranked in the Top 10 in two recent reports. First, according to a new report from Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate, Winston-Salem is the 10th Most Fun and Affordable place to live. Click here for the story from Bloomberg Businessweek.
Next, according to Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine, Winston-Salem ranks number 10 in its annual list of Cheapest US Cities to live in. Click here for details.