Summer was hired in November 2020 as NRVRC’s Economic Recovery Planner. Her role is to understand how communities and businesses in the region have been impacted by COVID-19, and work with them to create a new—hopefully better—normal. As a part of these efforts, she is working on composing an Economic Recovery Plan for the region, and the assisting with the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) Update.
Summer earned her master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Virginia Tech in 2020, and her BA in History from James Madison University. While pursuing her master’s degree, Summer worked for Virginia Tech’s Institute of Policy and Governance where she assisted with the data management and process evaluation for a Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services (SAMHSA) grant. She also worked on several projects as part of her Graduate Studies including a site planning project for the National Park Service, research and preliminary language for a temporary/seasonal vending ordinance in Buena Vista, VA, and recommendations for enabling legislation for craft beer production in the Town of Blacksburg, among other projects.