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What a year 2017 was for George Mason University. From a team of engineering students who developed a prosthetic to help a young girl play the violin, to our scientists who discovered ways to treat infectious diseases using Komodo dragon blood, to a Pulitzer finalist in Spanish-American history (a topic of particular interest to me!), we continued to innovate and make a difference. Our model for success remains a draw for talent. We welcomed our largest and most diverse class in university history, and celebrated a Carnegie Fellow, an Oscar- and Emmy-nominated cinematographer, and our first Rhodes Scholar finalist in a decade. Read on to learn more about our amazing year. VIEW THE ANNUAL REPORT

Loudoun Chamber Celebrates 5 Decades of Community Advocacy

The newspaper headlines are familiar.

Plans are being made to widen Rt. 7. The Board of Supervisors is wrestling with the merits of a massive development requested by one of the world’s largest tech companies. Purcellville residents complain about traffic on Main Street. Editorials focus attention on plans to extend rail service to Dulles Airport. Teachers lobby for raises in the school budget. That was in 1968.

Fairfax-Loudoun proposal makes first cut for Amazon HQ2 consideration

Fairfax County, Virginia – A site straddling Fairfax and Loudoun counties is one of the northern Virginia locations that has been selected for further consideration as the company’s second headquarters. Fewer than 10 percent of the 238 sites proposed for “HQ2” are on the short list of locations that Amazon announced today.

Faces of Loudoun: Lakshmi’s Story, Childhood Memories Sparked Lifelong Drive to Serve.

Some of my earliest memories are of my first return to my birthplace in India. My parents moved back there for 2½ years when I was in third grade. Clean, fresh water was scarce, as was food. Beggars in tatters walked past my home every day—many with arms and legs missing. It was a searing, transformative experience that stays with me always. My family isn’t wealthy, but, even at that age, I understood I had a lot to be grateful for. As a result, I have always sought a way to use my blessings in service to others.

Girls Run to Life Lessons

A nationwide initiative has found its way onto Loudoun County’s tracks and fields, and is giving girls the opportunity to run and pick up a few life lessons along the way.

Girls on the Run is a nationwide nonprofit organization that seeks to empower young girls to live a joyful, healthy and confident life. Groups meet twice weekly in small groups, where running is used to inspire and motivate, and a curriculum led by coaches teaches life skills through interactive lessons and running games.

Best Workplaces for Commuters

Since 2010, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, in partnership with the University of South Florida’s Center for Urban Transportation Research, has designated 57 Fairfax County employers as “Best Workplaces for Commuters.” Employers located in Fairfax County who offer commuting options to employees may be recognized as one of the “Best Workplaces for Commuters” (BWC) by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and the University of South Florida’s Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR). The BWC designation acknowledges employers who have excelled in implementing green commuter programs such as ride-sharing, transit benefits, biking and walking, teleworking, alternate work schedules and other strategies. These types of commuter programs improve mobility by reducing the number of single-occupant vehicles on the roads.