This year marks the 50th  Anniversary of the Council of Community  Services. The Council was formed in 1960 following the determination of a volunteer steering committee that the Roanoke Valley needed  a comprehensive planning  agency that would be concerned  with the full range of social and civic problems.

The work of the Council is concentrated in three key areas where its efforts have the greatest impact: identifying community  needs and solutions; connecting  the community  to programs; and launching new programs. Over the last 50 years, the Council has consistently provided leadership to organizations  and individuals in the areas of planning, information, and referral services to improve the quality of life in the Roanoke Valley. Two words — “vision” and “planning” — are the guiding principles for the organization. Keeping these concepts in the forefront, the Council continues  its tradition  of being the region’s “agencies’ agency” providing support  and technical assistance to social service and other related organizations that focus on addressing  critical needs of our citizens. In order to effectively address those needs, the Council develops new programs and services, some of which remain under  the Council’s umbrella, others are “launched” as independent organizations  or as programs of other agencies.

Because the Council’s role is generally one of supporting and assisting other agencies and funding bodies, its own light is usually hidden  under  the proverbial basket. In this 50th  anniversary year, the Council wishes to recognize the many volunteers that have served the community  through the work of the Council, serving on the Council’s Board of Directors and the many committees and task forces that have worked over the years to improve the quality of life for all citizens of the Roanoke Valley as well as the southwest and central regions of the Commonwealth.

Happy 50th  Anniversary to the Council of Community  Services! May you continue  to serve the Roanoke Valley and surrounding regions for many years into the future, as you have over the past 50 years.


Rudy Austin

Co-Chair, 50th  Anniversary Planning Committee


 Shelby Hamlett

Co-Chair, 50th  Anniversary Planning Committee