Valerie Lynn Willis – Student Advocate, Philanthropist, Community Service Provider is being recognized as the 2022 Emerald Award Honoree for Services to Youth at our 12th Annual Emerald Award Program.
Valerie Lynn Willis came to Raleigh over twenty years ago as a self-employed Information Technology (IT) consultant and competitive racquetball player. She founded The Christy Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization to function as a philanthropic channel to assist the Raleigh community and to host fundraiser events on area campuses. The Foundation operates exclusively for charitable purposes and engages in activities that provide scholarships for youth to advance in STEM, medical and other areas of higher learning.
Valerie migrated away from racquetball to golf. She has had the pleasure of combining her appreciation of golf with her continuous desire to help our youth. She has chaired the Triangle Women in Golf (TWIG) Kidz youth program for multiple years. She has been able to implement improvement in how the program helps girls excel in golf for potential college scholarships and has created added awareness for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
Ms. Willis opened Metro Style salon studio that has given people of color a place to build their businesses from commission-based shops to self-employed and/or sole proprietors. Valerie was destined to be an advocate for change given her long lineage of education and community service. Her past encourages her keen interest in our youth and communities.