Locals recognized in Blue Ridge Country for making a difference

Here’s the press release from Blue Ridge Country magazine:

ROANOKE, Va., June 12, 2013—Three Asheville locals have been recognized in Blue Ridge Country for making a difference in the region.

Gwynne Rukenbrod, Thomas Watson and Leah Wong Ashburn are three of 25 individuals featured in the article “The Future of the Mountains: 25 Gen-X & Gen-Y People Making a Difference.”

The article highlights 25 young people who are positively contributing to the region in various ways. Each individual is highlighted for their story, accomplishments, passion and dedication to the region.

Rukenbrod, executive director of HandMade in America, is highlighted in the article for growing the craft economy in Western North Carolina. Watson, executive director of Rural Support Partners, works toward improving the economy, environment and social justice in rural communities. Ashburn works for her family business, Highland Brewing Company, which aims to be green and sustainable by giving spent grain to local farmers and helping in environmental efforts.

“Each one of the interview subjects sees the Blue Ridge region through the lens of their work—the region’s beauty, complexity and uniqueness,” said Cara Ellen Modisett, author of the article.

All 25 Gen-X and Gen-Y individuals can be found in the July/August 25th Anniversary Edition of Blue Ridge Country. The magazine is available on newsstands throughout the region as well in a new Inaugural Digital Edition at blueridgecountry.com/genx.

About Blue Ridge Country

Blue Ridge Country is an award-winning bimonthly regional magazine with a readership of 325,000. The magazine covers the mountain regions of nine southern states and explores history, food, festivals, travel, the outdoors and the environment. Blue Ridge Country is produced by LeisureMedia360 (formerly Leisure Publishing) in Roanoke, Va. LeisureMedia360 is the official publisher of the Virginia Tourism Corporation, the Virginia is for Lovers Travel Guide and several other publications.


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