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Home > About > Where We Are > Newsroom > The State Board for Community Colleges Welcomes New Members – 8.30.13

The State Board for Community Colleges Welcomes New Members – 8.30.13

Governor McDonnell has appointed three new members to the State Board for Community Colleges for 2013 – 2014.

James Cuthbertson

A native of Scotland, Cuthbertson has over 35 years of experience in the medical field. He is a graduate of Kent State University and holds a master’s degree in business administration from Case Western Reserve University. 

Cuthbertson is also a decorated Vietnam War veteran. In addition to three Purple Hearts and two Bronze Star medals, he was awarded the Silver Star- the nation’s third highest award for bravery.

Cuthbertson concluded his two-year term as chairman of the college board of J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College in June.

Darren Conner PE

A professional engineer by trade, Conner currently serves as President of Dewberry Engineers, Inc.’s southeast region. He directs a multi-disciplined staff of 175 professionals in Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia. In 2000, Conner received the Harold Williams Award – Dewberry’s highest honor.

Conner earned his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Virginia Tech and his associate’s degree in pre-engineering from Danville Community College.

Throughout his career, Conner has directed numerous operations that have contributed to the economic vitality of southside Virginia.

Benita Thompson-Byas

Thompson-Byas joined Thompson Hospitality in 1992 where she worked in the Operations Department before advancing to the position of VP of Marketing for the company’s contract and food service accounts.

In her current role, Thompson-Byas oversees all aspects of Thompson Hospitality’s strategic partnership with Compass Group, including operational responsibility for more than 600 dining centers in 46 states.

Thompson-Byas earned her bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Virginia.

Appointed by the Governor for up to two four-year terms, the board’s 15 members meet six times a year to set policy for all of Virginia’s Community Colleges.