Thumbs up to the local business legends who were inducted into the Lynchburg Regional Business Alliance’s Business Hall of Fame earlier this month at a gala event held at The Virginian Hotel in historic downtown.

The Business Alliance inducted its first class of honorees last year. The 2019 inductees include the following:

» Beverley E. Dalton and William Curtis English (deceased) representing English Construction and Edward Ralph (Red) English Sr. (deceased) and Edward Ralph English Jr. representing English’s Inc. and English Development Corp.;

» George W. Dawson, the retired CEO of Centra;

» Bert F. Dodson Sr. (deceased) and Bert F. Dodson Jr. of Dodson Pest Control;

» Watt R. Foster Sr. (deceased) and Watt R. Foster Jr. of Foster Fuels;

» Amy G. Ray, retired, of Brown Edwards & Company and current chairwoman of the board of directors of Centra; and

» T.D. Thornton, the retired founder Progress Printing Plus.

The men and women honored represent businesses with deep roots in Central Virginia. Indeed, they or their families started many of the businesses represented and have built them into upstanding corporate citizens. They, their families and their employees are among the first to step up when the community needs them, whether it’s the United Way of Central Virginia, the Red Cross or any other community social service organization that needs their support.

Any community in America would be fortunate to have such a group of folks among their number; we in Central Virginia just happen to be the ones who can claim these ladies and gentlemen as our own.

Thank you.

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Thumbs up to a group of students at the University of Lynchburg who took a public stand against ethnic discrimination on their own campus earlier this week.

Here’s the backstory: Late on Monday, photos of some UL students, costumed as stereotypical Mexicans — think sombreros, panchos and big mustaches — at a “Fiesta”-themed party started appearing on social media. Making fun of people from different cultures and doing so on stereotypes based in cartoons and B-movies from the 1950s is simply wrong and cruel. It has no place in America in 2019.

On Wednesday morning, more than 100 UL students gathered on the quad to protest the party and to make it known, loudly and clearly, that neither they nor their university support such stupid, childish and hurtful behavior.

To them and others who support them, we say, “Hear hear!”

University officials are investigating the party and how it came to be. It is our sincere hope that this will be a learning experience for the UL students involved and that they learn why such behavior is abhorent and not to be tolerated.

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