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Local Barber Will Jones III Selected for Vanguard Award

William “Will” Jones III
William “Will” Jones III
Thomas Penny III
Thomas Penny III

The Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce today announced that William “Will” Jones III was selected as the recipient of the 2019 John F. Bell Sr. Vanguard Award. The award will be presented at the Minority Business Luncheon, a Minority Business Week event. The luncheon, hosted by the Chamber Business Diversity Council, will be held on Tuesday, September 17th, 11:30am-1:30pm, at the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center. Thomas Penny, President of Donohoe Hospitality Services, will deliver the keynote address.

“In a time where the media tends to lean towards painting black males in a negative light, it’s not unheard of to hear about and see young black men like Will starting and running successful businesses. There are more men like Will than not,” wrote Mr. Jones’ nominator. “He mentors black, white and Hispanic barbers to be successful in their craft the way he is. Will not only encourages entrepreneurship within his own community, but he builds it in others as well.”

Surprised and emotionally moved when informed about being nominated and eventually selected as the award recipient, Mr. Jones said, “I am humbled, honored and deeply appreciative of being selected for this award.”

Jones is the co-owner, with Yolonda Coles Jones, of His Image Barber Shop and Natural Hair Studio in Charlottesville, founded in 2007.

The CBDC Vanguard Award is named in honor of John F. Bell Sr., a respected business leader who established successful businesses during a time when society wasn’t so welcoming to people of his cultural background. Past award recipients include Hollie Lee, Eugene and Lorraine Williams, Forward Adelante Business Alliance, and Kaye Monroe. Award criteria include someone who: displays high business and personal integrity, makes significant contributions in the area of business diversity, is civically engaged, and develops other business leaders.

The minority business luncheon provides attendees an opportunity to connect with a diversity of business professionals. Its aim is also to grow the diverse pool of individuals seeking to do business with minority-owned enterprises.

The Chamber Business Diversity Council Minority Business Luncheon is sponsored by Allison Partners and J. F. Bell Funeral Home, serving as the luncheon’s Gold and Silver Sponsors respectively.

The Charlottesville Regional Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to representing private enterprise, promoting business and enhancing the quality of life in the greater Charlottesville communities. Founded in 1913, today the more than 1,200 Chamber member and affiliate member enterprises employ more than 45,000 people in Greater Charlottesville, representing an estimated total payroll of more than $1.75 billion a year.

Chamber programs are supported by our Partners in Trust: CFA Institute, University of Virginia, UVA Health System, Atlantic Union Bank, MPS, The Daily Progress, United Bank, UVA Community Credit Union, Wells Fargo, Great Eastern Management Company, Hourigan, R. E. Lee Companies, Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital, State Farm, Tom Tom Festival, Marjorie Adam Team, Story House Real Estate, and the bridge ltd.