First Lady Youngkin believes in fostering an environment that unifies all Virginians and supports a great quality of life to both live and raise a family. With an eye to highlighting goodness, First Lady Youngkin has launched several initiatives to spotlight Virginians and support the citizens of the Commonwealth: The Spirit of Virginia Award, Spirit of Sisterhood, as well as ongoing enhancements of Richmond’s historic Executive Mansion.
The Spirit of Virginia Award celebrates Virginians across the Commonwealth who work tirelessly to embody the Governor’s personal mission of “Strengthening the Spirit of Virginia.” On behalf of the Governor, First Lady Youngkin presents six awards each year to acknowledge and thank individuals and organizations for prioritizing helping others in private industry, education, culture, the arts and philanthropy.
First Lady Youngkin’s Spirit of Sisterhood initiatives engage women across the Commonwealth to provide essential resources, news and special events that bring people together. Emphasizing the importance of Sisterhood, she lifts up Virginia’s women leaders in areas of government, business and entrepreneurship, education, workforce development, nonprofits, resilience in wellness and more.
In Richmond, First Lady Youngkin collaborates with the seasoned staff, docents, historians, and Governor-appointed Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) on all aspects of care for Virginia’s Historic Executive Mansion. Built in 1813 and the oldest purpose-built governor’s residence in the country, it is a National Historic Landmark. The residence has been continuously lived in ever since Governor James Barbour resided there from 1812-1814. Today, the mansion features a newly installed “Art Experience” — a specially curated exhibit of art and antiquities produced or owned by Virginians, on loan from museums in every part of the Commonwealth, that tell the rich story of Virginia’s past, present and future.
During the height of COVID 19, the Governor and First Lady Youngkin recognized a need to support Virginians in preparing for high-demand career paths by providing funding for education, training, and other tools. Together in 2020, they founded the Virginia Ready Initiative (VA Ready), a nonprofit organization established in direct response to the economic hardships created by COVID-19. To date, the nonprofit has helped more than 4,000 Virginians navigate re-skilling for work and continues to help more.
First Lady Youngkin is active in the community. She currently serves as President of the Phos Foundation, a private charitable entity. She has a great appreciation for and love of the arts and has served on the Board of Directors of the Shakespeare Theatre Company. Driven by her love of horses, she founded Normandy Farm LLC, an equestrian operation and farm in Great Falls, VA and has served on the advisory council at Virginia Tech’s Marion DuPont Scott Equine Medical Center.
She is also Director Emeritus of Meadowkirk at Delta Farm Retreat Center in Middleburg, Virginia, a retreat ministry where individuals can go to experience nature and a serene place of rest and renewal.
The Governor and First Lady are founding and active members of Holy Trinity Church (HTC) in McLean, Virginia.
Prior to her current activities, First Lady Youngkin earned a Bachelor of Arts from Southern Methodist University in University Park, Texas and was Vice President at a leading global communications firm in Washington, DC.