Friday, June 17, 2021

Erin Hillert, James River Association
(e) (p) 608.239.2644

Bill Bodine, Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation
(e) (p) 434.845.6500

Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation to award James River Association 2022 Century Fund Grant

The Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation (GLCF) has awarded the James River Association (JRA) its 2022 Century Fund Grant of $100,000. The competitive funding is for projects anticipated to have a transformational impact on the community, county, or entire region. 

The Upper James River Center will strengthen the Lynchburg region’s connection to the James River and help leverage the benefits that the river can provide. The project includes building a new trail and landing to provide safe and easy access to launch paddle craft, as well as improvements to the existing building and the addition of an outdoor classroom to expand and enhance the education space. 

All these elements will increase the impact of JRA’s education programs, attract new visitors, and bolster tourism. Once complete, the Upper James River Center will enable JRA to provide impactful river experiences to thousands of students and the general public of the greater Lynchburg region.  This project will create a new Upper James River Center in Riveredge Park in Amherst County, just across from downtown Lynchburg, to enhance available river activities and expand the audience that can participate, supporting the vision of a fully healthy James River.

“The Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation is very happy to be able to support a project that will provide more opportunities for people all over our region to enjoy the James River, a  wonderful natural resource,” according to GLCF President, Bill Bodine

Each year, the foundation provides about $2 million in grants and scholarships to local agencies and students. Now in its third year, the Century Fund grant is a catalyst for enhancing the lives of central Virginians in many ways. 

“We are thrilled and honored to receive the Century Fund Grant,” said Bill Street, CEO for the James River Association. “It completes our fundraising goal for the Upper James River Center and allows us to move forward with the improvements to the building at Riveredge Park to transform it into a cutting-edge environmental education center that will connect students with the James for years to come.”

The Upper James River Center is part of the James Changer Campaign which the James River Association launched in 2019.  For more information about the James Changer Campaign including a video of the Upper James River Center and information about how to support the campaign, visit


The James River Association is a member-supported nonprofit organization founded in 1976 to serve as a guardian and voice for the James River. Throughout the James River’s 10,000-square mile watershed, the James River Association works toward its vision of a fully healthy James River supporting thriving communities. The James River Association believes that “when you change the James, the James changes you.” With offices in Lynchburg, Scottsville, Richmond, and Williamsburg, the James River Association is committed to protecting the James River and connecting people to it. 


Greater Lynchburg Community Foundation’s primary mission is to enhance the quality of life in the communities served by the establishment of permanent endowments for the cities of Lynchburg and Bedford, and the counties of Amherst, Appomattox, Bedford and Campbell, with the income distributed annually to charitable organizations within the community. For more information visit