Hear from thought leaders from inside and outside Virginia as we dive into content related to economic development, education, workforce, and other topics of interest to the business community.

April Wade, Executive Director, Virginia Nuclear Energy Consortium

Nuclear’s Role in the Future of Clean Energy: A Conversation With April Wade

April Wade is executive director of the Virginia Nuclear Energy Consortium (VNEC), which represents stakeholders invested in research and development, workforce, innovation, and advocacy for the nuclear energy industry. VEDP President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Wade about VNEC’s mission and activities and the role nuclear energy can play in a robust power generation industry working toward ambitious clean energy goals.

Bob Blue, Chair, President and CEO, Dominion Energy, Inc.

Charting a Cleaner Energy Future for Virginia: A Conversation With Bob Blue

Bob Blue is chair, president, and CEO of Dominion Energy, Inc., an integrated energy utility headquartered in Richmond that operates in 15 states and provides energy to 7 million customers. VEDP President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Blue about the company’s history serving commercial and residential customers and its efforts to shift the balance of its portfolio toward clean energy.

VER Q3 2023 Jay Lowell

The Big-Picture View of Quantum’s Potential: A Conversation With Jay Lowell

Jay Lowell is a principal senior technical fellow at The Boeing Company, where he helps guide technical strategy and research implementation regarding disruptive emerging technologies. Dave Ihrie, chief technology officer of the Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation, spoke with Lowell about Boeing’s quantum priorities and how the company fits quantum technology into its existing mission.

VER Q3 2023 Yzzkov Weinstein Headshot

A New Way to Model the Universe: A Conversation With Yaakov Weinstein

Dr. Yaakov Weinstein is chief scientist of quantum technologies at The MITRE Corporation, a major research organization that conducts and supports research from government and industry on topics important to national security and stability. Dave Ihrie, chief technology officer of the Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation, spoke with Weinstein about the fundamentals of quantum computing, the history of the field, and potential implications across a disparate group of industries.

VER Q3 2023 Joseph Broz Headshot

The Era of Quantum Utility: A Conversation With Joseph Broz

Dr. Joseph S. Broz is vice president for quantum growth and market development at IBM, where he’s responsible for driving commercial quantum applications and business adoption of advanced quantum computing capabilities. Dave Ihrie, chief technology officer of the Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation, spoke with Broz about IBM’s extensive history and leadership position in the quantum computing field and why recent quantum successes are so important.

Jonathan Zur Headshot Cropped v2

Advancing Diversity and Inclusion in Virginia: A Conversation With Jonathan Zur

Jonathan Zur is president and CEO of the Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities (VCIC), a nonprofit organization that works with schools, businesses, and communities to promote inclusion. VEDP President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Zur about VCIC’s mission, its activities, and the importance of pairing diversity with inclusion.

Tom Walker, CEO, Drone Up

An Inside Look at Drone Innovation: A Conversation With Tom Walker

Tom Walker is the founder and CEO of DroneUp, a provider of drone delivery and flight services that has operated out of Virginia Beach since its founding in 2016. VEDP President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Walker about DroneUp’s delivery partnership with Walmart, its history and growth in Virginia, and the company’s work to grow the drone industry in Virginia through a unique educational partnership.

Rene Rodgers Podcast Headshot VER Q3 2022

Following the Crooked Road: A Conversation With René Rodgers

Dr. René Rodgers is head curator at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum in Bristol, where she leads the museum’s collections, permanent and special exhibits, and other educational programming. VEDP President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Rodgers about Virginia’s role in the popularization of what’s now known as country music, the complexities of promoting tourist attractions across state lines, and how the museum has benefited from the presence of The Crooked Road: Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail.

Philip D'Anieri Podcast Headshot

The Story Behind an Iconic American Hike: A Conversation With Philip D’Anieri

Philip D’Anieri is the author of “The Appalachian Trail: A Biography,” published in 2021 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. VEDP President Jason El Koubi spoke with D’Anieri about the history of the Appalachian Trail inside and outside of Virginia, why he chose to cover the trail’s history through a human lens, and the inseparability of his field, urban planning, from the natural environment.

Anne Kress Podcast Horizontal Headshot VER Q2 2022

Creating Positive Outcomes for Students and Employers: A Conversation With Anne Kress

Dr. Anne Kress is president of Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA), the largest public educational institution in Virginia and the second-largest community college in the United States. VEDP President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Kress about the importance of community colleges in workforce development, the effectiveness of industry partnerships in delivering talent to employers.

Earl Buford Horizontal Headshot VER Q2 2022

When Education Meets Employment: A Conversation With Earl Buford

Earl Buford is president of the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL), a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting adult learners as they navigate between education and employment. VEDP President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Buford about CAEL’s mission and work, best practices for getting workers the training they need for the jobs they want, and the family history that motivates him.

John Newby

Helping Life Sciences Companies Succeed in Virginia: A Conversation With John Newby

John Newby is CEO of Virginia Bio, the nonprofit statewide trade association that serves and promotes the life sciences industry in the Commonwealth. VEDP Interim President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Newby about recent life sciences success stories in the Commonwealth and Virginia Bio’s efforts to grow the industry, including the recently announced industry hub, Virginia Bio-Connect.

Chandra Briggman

Nurturing Innovation in the Life Sciences: A Conversation With Chandra Briggman

Chandra Briggman is president and CEO of Activation Capital and VA Bio+Tech Park in Richmond. VEDP Interim President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Briggman about her organization’s mission and activities, the emerging pharmaceutical cluster in Richmond and Petersburg, and the nuances of supporting life sciences investment during a global pandemic.

Byron Reese

Automation and Work in ‘The Fourth Age’: A Conversation With Byron Reese

Byron Reese is an entrepreneur, speaker, author, and futurist. VEDP Interim President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Reese about the progression of technology and what it means for the future of the workforce.

Ted Mercer

From the Shore to the Stars: A Conversation With Ted Mercer

Maj. Gen. Ted Mercer is the new CEO and executive director of Virginia Space, the owner and operator of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS), collocated at the NASA Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. VEDP Interim President and CEO Jason El Koubi spoke with Mercer about his priorities at Virginia Space, the facility’s capabilities and clients, and the importance of commercial launches at Wallops.

Luiz DaSilva

Sharing Resources to Improve Cyberspace: A Conversation With Luiz DaSilva

Luiz DaSilva is executive director of the Commonwealth Cyber Initiative (CCI) and Bradley Professor in Cybersecurity at Virginia Tech. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with DaSilva about the collaborative research taking place at CCI’s member institutions and how that collaboration is positioning Virginia to set the course for the future of the internet.

Steve Morgan

Quantifying Cybercrime: A Conversation With Steve Morgan

Steve Morgan is the founder of Cybersecurity Ventures, a leading cybersecurity research company that provides data and insights on global cybercrime to C-suite executives, and editor-in-chief of Cybercrime Magazine. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Morgan about skyrocketing cybercrime damages, the cybersecurity skills gap, and Virginia’s place at the top of the cybersecurity industry.

John Keppler

An Exporter’s View of International Trade: A Conversation With John Keppler

John Keppler is chairman, CEO, and co-founder of Enviva, the world’s largest producer of woody biomass and one of Virginia’s largest exporters out of its private terminal in the city of Chesapeake. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Keppler about the company’s unique export profile, its commitment to sustainable forestry practices, and the quest to get to net zero carbon emissions by 2030.

Stephen Edwards

Building on Success at The Port of Virginia: A Conversation With Stephen Edwards

Stephen Edwards is the new CEO and executive director of The Port of Virginia. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Edwards about the port’s ambitious ongoing modernization efforts, Virginia’s geographic export advantages, and the challenges of guiding essential logistics operations during a global pandemic.

Matt Calkins headshot

The Appian Way: A Conversation With Matt Calkins

Matt Calkins is founder and CEO of Appian, an enterprise cloud software company headquartered in Fairfax County. Appian is a leader in low-code automation, enabling organizations to develop powerful and business applications quickly. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Calkins about building and running a software company headquartered in Northern Virginia.

Tysons skyline

Factors in Corporate Headquarters Location Decisions

VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with leading site consultants Greg Burkart (Duff & Phelps), Jeannette Goldsmith (Strategic Development Group), and Chris Schastok (CBRE) about the factors that affect corporate headquarters location decisions, how companies will operate differently coming out of the pandemic, and the advantages Virginia has in attracting corporate headquarters investment.

Kevin Scott headshot

Making AI Serve Us All: A Conversation With Kevin Scott

Kevin Scott is chief technology officer and executive vice president, technology and research, at Microsoft, and the author of “Reprogramming the American Dream: From Rural America to Silicon Valley — Making AI Serve Us All.” VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Scott about his journey from rural Virginia to one of the biggest tech companies in the world and how artificial intelligence is poised to transform the U.S. economy.

Rita McClenney headshot

Behind the Love: A Conversation With Rita McClenny

Rita McClenny is president and CEO of the Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC), the agency tasked with expanding domestic and international inbound travel and motion picture production in Virginia. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with McClenny about Virginia’s top tourist destinations, marketing tourism during a global pandemic, and what it’s like overseeing one of the most enduring brands in tourism marketing, “Virginia is for Lovers.”

Dale Nash, CEO and Executive Director, Virginia Space

Virginia’s Place in Space: A Conversation With Dale Nash

Dale Nash is CEO and executive director of Virginia Space, owner and operator of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at Wallops Island on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Nash about the mission and history of Virginia Space and the opportunities for commercial space flight at Wallops.

Peter Beck, CEO, CTO, and founder of Rocket Lab

‘We Go to Space to Improve Life on Earth’: A Conversation With Peter Beck

Peter Beck is CEO, CTO, and founder of Rocket Lab, a private space company with commercial launch sites in New Zealand and at Wallops Island on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. VEDP Executive Vice President Jason El Koubi spoke with Beck about Rocket Lab’s evolution, its decision to locate in Virginia, and the future of commercial space flight.

Katherine Rowe

Range: The Case for the Liberal Arts - A Conversation With Katherine Rowe

Dr. Katherine A. Rowe is the 28th president of William & Mary. She also founded and serves as CEO at Luminary Digital Media and has published three books. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Rowe about integrating digital literacy with a classic liberal arts education, running a university during the COVID-19 pandemic, and more.

VER Q1 2020 Podcast Food Beverage

What’s Next for the Food & Beverage Industry?

VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with leading site consultants Brian Corde (Atlas Insight), Scott Kupperman (Kupperman Location Solutions), and Brandon Talbert (Austin Consulting) about the factors that make states and localities successful in attracting projects in an industry where even the most successful companies depend on low margins and economies of scale.

VER Q1 2020 Podcast James Rosenbaum

Beyond One-Size-Fits-All College Dreams: A Conversation With James Rosenbaum

James Rosenbaum is a professor of human development, social policy, and sociology at Northwestern University’s Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences and a faculty fellow at the Institute for Policy Research. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Rosenbaum about how the traditional college model fails some students and what can be done to make it work better.

Podcast with Joel Kotkin Virginia Economic Review 4th Quarter

The Future of Cities: A Conversation With Joel Kotkin

Joel Kotkin is the Presidential Fellow in Urban Futures at Chapman University in Orange, Calif., and executive director of the Houston-based Center for Opportunity Urbanism. The New York Times has described him as “America’s Uber-Geographer” for his work on global economic, political, and social trends. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Kotkin about the forces affecting U.S. cities, suburbs, and rural areas.

Podcast with Steven Brint Virginia Economic Review 4th Quarter

Preparing Students for Sustainable Jobs: A Conversation With Steven Brint

Steven Brint is distinguished professor of sociology and public policy at the University of California, Riverside, and the author of “Two Cheers for Higher Education.” VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret caught up with Brint on a recent trip to the West Coast to discuss his work in, and analysis of, higher education in the 21st century.

Podcast with Tad Deriso Virginia Economic Review 4th Quarter

Connecting Southern Virginia to the World: A Conversation With Tad Deriso

Tad Deriso is president and CEO at Mid-Atlantic Broadband Communities Corporation, a South Boston-based nonprofit organization that has built an advanced open-access fiber optic network in Southern Virginia. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Deriso in Danville about his work creating world-class fiber infrastructure in a rural region.

Podcast with Susie Adams Virginia Economic Review 4th Quarter

The Evolution of Cloud Computing: A Conversation With Susie Adams

Susie Adams is chief technology officer (federal government business) at Microsoft, where she oversees and implements the technical strategy for the technology giant’s Department of Defense, civilian, and intelligence community businesses. VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret spoke with Adams about data centers, Big Data, and the future of cloud and edge computing.

Tom Barkin

Moving the Needle in Rural Communities: A Conversation with Tom Barkin

Tom Barkin is the president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. VEDP’s President and CEO, Stephen Moret, recently spoke with Barkin about some of the issues and opportunities he has seen in the Fed’s Fifth District in his first 18 months on the job.

Beth Macy

Virginia’s Rural Storyteller: A Conversation with Beth Macy

Beth Macy is a three-time New York Times best-selling author. She is the author of “Factory Man”, “Truevine”, and “Dopesick.” VEDP President and CEO Stephen Moret recently visited with Macy in Roanoke to discuss her work and unique perspective on issues facing rural America.

John Reinhart Headshot

Building the Capacity for Greatness at The Port of Virginia: A Conversation with John Reinhart

John F. Reinhart is the CEO and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority (VPA). VEDP’s President and CEO, Stephen Moret, recently spoke with Reinhart about a transformative period in the history of the Port and what the future looks like at The Port of Virginia in the maritime industry.

Jay Timmons

The State of Modern Manufacturing: A Conversation with Jay Timmons

Jay Timmons is president and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and chairman of the board of the NAM’s Manufacturing Institute. VEDP’s President and CEO, Stephen Moret, recently spoke with Timmons about the issues that are important to manufacturers in the U.S.

Remaking Economic Development: A conversation with Amy Liu

Remaking Economic Development: A Conversation with Amy Liu

Amy Liu, vice president and director of the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings speaks on the future of economic development, how it is changing and how it should change, as well as the Amazon HQ2 project that recently was announced in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Tim Sands’ Bold Vision for Virginia Tech

Tim Sands’ Bold Vision for Virginia Tech

Timothy D. Sands, the 16th president of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, discusses exciting new developments at Virginia Tech, the university’s role in bringing Amazon’s HQ2 project to Virginia, the plan for a new innovation campus in Alexandria, and how Virginia Tech partners with business and industry.

Greg LeRoy Puts Good Jobs First

Greg LeRoy Puts Good Jobs First

Greg LeRoy, the founder and executive director of Good Jobs First, discusses the inspiration for the creation of Good Jobs First, thoughts about the Amazon HQ2 project, and the future of economic development incentives in the U.S.