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At the Style Weekly/Valentine party honoring the 100 most influential Richmonders of the century

Richmond Salutes Top 100

Which individuals did the most to shape 20th-century Richmond? A good part of the answer could be found chatting animatedly in the Valentine Museum garden Monday, May 10. A virtual parade of leaders from business, education, the media, medicine and the arts greeted each other in the brilliant afternoon sunshine at the opening reception for a new exhibition, "Movers and Shapers: 25 Influential Richmonders." Guests also previewed the May 11 issue of Style Weekly which featured 100 of the most influential Richmonders of the past century (Click here to read the story). Honorees who attended with their children included such personalities as Organist Eddie Weaver (who entertained thousands at the Miller & Rhoads Tea Room, Loew's and the Byrd), Edmund A. Rennolds Jr. (who with Emma Gray Twigg and his late wife, Mary Anne, co-founded The Richmond Symphony) and Oliver Hill Sr., a prominent civil rights lawyer. If nonagenarians Hill and Weaver were the oldest attending, younger Turks were also represented. These included Bruce Miller and Phil Whiteway, founders of Theatre IV in 1975, Sidney J. Gunst Jr., who developed Innsbrook, and Dr. Lisa G. Kaplowitz, director of the HIV/AIDS Center of Virginia Commonwealth University's Medical College of Virginia Hospitals. Of course, the majority of those anointed, such as Gov. John Garland Pollard, architect Charles Robinson and aluminum magnates Richard S. Reynolds and Richard S. Reynolds Jr., have gone to their rewards. But the latter were represented by their descendants, David Robinson, Garland Pollard IV and Richard S. "Major" Reynolds III, respectively.

"I got chill bumps as the names of those present were called and they stepped forward to be recognized," said one guest as her brush with living history evaporated as the party dispersed.

"We're not finished yet," emphasized Theatre IV founder and managing director Phil Whiteway, with a big grin.

And where were you?

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