Thursday, April 26, 2018

Richmond Public Utilities Department Announces New Director

Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney is pleased to announce Calvin D. Farr Jr. as the new director of the City of Richmond’s Department of Public Utilities (DPU). 

Mr. Farr was selected for the position after an extensive national search. Farr is a successful professional engineer and senior level project manager. He previously served as the Assistant Commissioner of the Department of Watershed Management for the City of Atlanta, GA. He holds an Executive Masters of Public Management from the University of Maryland, College Park, a Masters of Environmental Engineering from Johns Hopkins University, and a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Old Dominion University. He will begin his work with Richmond’s Department of Public Utilities in late May, 2018.

Mr. Farr has 21 years of utility industry and government experience. He brings a wealth of understanding of capital improvements, maintenance practices, asset management and environmental compliance in the utility industry. He is a leader in developing and implementing programs to address and improve infrastructure issues faced nationally by utility companies. 

In his role as DPU director, Mr. Farr will oversee five utilities that include natural gas, water, wastewater, stormwater and electric street lighting.  

“Calvin will be a great asset to the City of Richmond and DPU,” said Mayor Stoney. “He stood out to the selection committee because of his professionalism, experience and passion to protect the environment and provide good customer service.” 

Rosemary Green, DPU’s current interim director has done a stellar job of keeping the DPU ship on course.  Once Mr. Farr takes the reins, Ms. Green will return to her previous role as Deputy Director II.   

“I’m truly honored to be selected as the new DPU Director and excited by the challenges and opportunities that DPU faces,” said Mr. Farr.  “I look forward to helping shape and implement strategy to continue to provide premier utility service that meets or exceeds Richmond’s goals, a city I have always loved.”   

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Richmond Named Host City of the 2020 International Menuhin Competition

The City of Richmond has been selected as the host city for the international Menuhin Competition 2020, often billed as, “The Olympics of the Violin,” it is the world’s leading international competition for young violinists. 

A delegation led by Mayor Levar M. Stoney, University of Richmond (UR) First Lady Dr. Betty Crutcher, Richmond Symphony Executive Director David J.L. Fisk, Interim Music Department Chair for Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Dr. James Wiznerowicz and VP/GM for TV for Commonwealth Public Broadcasting (WCVE) John Felton joined competition organizers in Geneva, Switzerland over the weekend for the announcement of Richmond’s winning bid from the stage of Victoria Hall during the closing gala concert of the Menuhin Competition Geneva 2018 with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

“We are thrilled to be hosting the International Menuhin Competition and honored to join the company of such distinguished international destinations like Geneva in welcoming the most talented young musicians in the world to our city,” said Mayor Stoney.

“Richmond is a thriving and diverse city that is home to a number of internationally-recognized artistic, educational and cultural attractions,” the Mayor continued. “Our vibrant and dedicated arts community looks forward to welcoming these artists and their families in 2020.”

The competition will take place May 14 - 24, 2020 in venues throughout the city, including the Modlin Center for the Arts at UR, the W.E. Singleton Center for the Performing Arts at VCU and the Carpenter Theatre at the Dominion Energy Center for the Performing Arts. 

Throughout the competition, 44 of the best young violinists in the world will compete for top awards in performances ranging from solo recitals to concerts with chamber groups and full orchestra. While the Richmond Symphony will be the primary accompanying orchestra for the festival, the Sphinx Virtuosi ensemble - made up exclusively of 18 of the top young Black and Latino classical musicians - will also participate in accompanying the Junior Finals and in performances and workshops with local public schools.

Named after the famed violinist and conductor Yehudi Menuhin, the 11-day festival attracts the greatest young violinists under the age of 22 from around the world to compete in recitals and chamber concerts, including showcase performances with the Richmond Symphony. Competitors are judged by a jury of some of the world’s most celebrated musicians who also perform in recitals and other concerts throughout the festival.

A full schedule of competition events and activities will be released at a later date.

For more information about the Menuhin Competition visit: