For Immediate Release: September 14, 2017
Contacts: Office of the Governor: Brian Coy, (804) 225-4260, | Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development: Barbara…

Dodd, (804) 371-7006,

Grant will promote entrepreneurialism, expand opportunities for culinary workers to start or expand their own businesses

ARLINGTON –Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced a $175,000 grant to La Cocina VA, a nonprofit workforce development organization in Arlington County, to enhance its culinary skills training facility, create a business plan training course, and develop a small business competition. Program participants will have a chance to compete for business start-up awards in a small business competition. Winners will receive monetary prizes allowing them to start a new business or expand an existing business.

“I was impressed by La Cocina VA’s commitment to the community it serves after recently attending one of their graduation ceremonies,” said Governor McAuliffe. “These Virginians are striving to obtain the American Dream through hard work and an entrepreneurial spirit. I’m honored to announce this grant, which will further La Cocina’s workforce development efforts to provide more Virginians with the skills they need to obtain good-paying jobs in the new Virginia economy.”

“It is encouraging to see grassroots efforts to connect people with low food access to emerging entrepreneurs in their community, striving to start food-related businesses,” said First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe, who presented the grant award at an announcement event on behalf of the Governor.  “La Cocina’s new training courses and business plan competition will provide a framework for entrepreneurs to succeed, creating more jobs in the new Virginia economy. Improving food access and expanding economic opportunity are two sides of the same coin when it comes to achieving a stronger, healthier Virginia.”