The Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival®’s Valley Health Business-at-the-Bloom Luncheon, presented in conjunction with the Top of Virginia Regional Chamber of Commerce, has been a very pleasant surprise for Festival Officials in recent years. This event has existed for some time in the Festival calendar; but, for a while, it just couldn’t seem to find its identity. Over time, the powerhouse backing of Valley Health and the Regional Chamber created a solid structure that only needed a focus to achieve great success. That focus has come in the form of a succession of outstanding, national-level Speakers. The list reads like a virtual Hall of Fame of Business Speakers: 2012 – Sheetz, Incorporated, Executive Vice President, Louie Sheetz; 2013 – Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas Founder and CEO, Tim League; 2014 – Entrepreneur and Black Entertainment Television Founder, Sheila Johnson; and, 2015 – Edward Jones Principal and Chief Human Resources Officer, Anthony McBride. To this outstanding list, it is with great pride that Festival President, Jim Douglas, adds the name of Mary McDuffie, long-time, multi-functioned executive for the wildly successful Navy Federal Credit Union.
Mary McDuffie has been with Navy Federal for sixteen years. Her current responsibilities include call center operations, online and mobile banking, consumer research, marketing, advertising, and public relations. Before assuming her present position, she was Navy Federal’s Executive Vice President for lending, including the origination and servicing of the credit union’s lending products. She has also held the position of Navy Federal’s Senior Vice President for marketing and product development. Before joining Navy Federal, Mary served as Senior Vice President of marketing for Star Systems, Inc., where her responsibilities included all advertising, public relations and direct marketing programs, as well as serving as head of strategic planning and new product development. Mary began her career with J. Walter Thompson (JWT), working in the Washington, DC, and the Jakarta, Indonesia, offices. Her experience also includes public relations and advocacy communications. Over her career, she has worked with a wide range of clients, including the United States Marine Corps, IBM, Kodak, Unilever, and Freddie Mac. Mary graduated with honors from Wellesley College and attended graduate school at Brown University. She and her family live in Bethesda, Maryland.
Opening in 1933, and headquartered in Vienna, Virginia, Navy Federal Credit Union has grown to over 6 million members, with membership doubling since the year 2000. As of August 2015, Navy Federal had nearly $70 billion in assets and over 10,000 employees world-wide. This growth has been achieved through an unwavering focus on the needs of its members and a highly engaged workforce. In 2016, Navy Federal has again been named to Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For.” Ms. McDuffie will share Navy Federal’s strategies for providing world class service at each member interaction, and creating a great place to work.
Once again in 2016, the Valley Health Business-at-the-Bloom Luncheon will be deliciously catered by Carrabba’s Italian Grill. Advance ticket orders may be placed now at Apple Blossom Headquarters; or, at the Official Online Store. Tickets may be purchased in person when the Festival’s Official Souvenir Store and Ticket Outlet opens at 10am on Monday, April 4th, 2016, at 212 East Cork Street, across from the Winchester Moose Lodge. For a Table Reservation fee of $125, over and above the purchase price of 8 tickets, a party of eight can reserve a table with preferred placement along with other desirable perks.