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J. J. and Mike Smith '89

What you throw away, we would like to conserve-that is the motto of Valley Proteins, Inc., and that is the commitment of a truly "green" company headed by Shepherd alumus Michael Smith '89 and his brother, J.J. The company is a current leader in air and water quality controls and, most recently, has developed a process to provide alternative fuel for industrial boilers through the use of animal fats.

This family-owned business was started by Mike's grandfather in Winchester, Virginia, almost 60 years ago as a service to recycle waste meat by-products and spent cooking oils. The business has grown to be one of the largest independent rendering companies in North America, operating 12 plants. Following graduation from Shepherd, Mike joined the business, then owned by his father.

Mike never forgot Shepherd and has given back to the University in many ways. He serves on the Foundation's Board of Directors and the Create the Future campaign steering committee. In 2004 he established a scholarship in memory of his father designated for financially needy students from Winchester or Frederick County, Virginia, majoring in business, science, or engineering. In 2007 Mike and J.J. established the Edward L. Snyder Endowed Chair for Business in honor of their maternal grandfather, a campaign gift meant to stimulate growth of the business department.

"Shepherd is in a great location to be successful," said Mike. "Area businesses need well-educated people, and they compete with Northern Virginia to get them. We have more Shepherd grads on our payroll than any other college, and they have benefited our business greatly."

J. J. and Mike Smith '89


Create the Future | P.O. Box 5000 | Shepherdstown, West Virginia | 25443-5000 | 304-876-5378 | 800-344-5231