The Roanoker - January/February 2020 - 38

40 UNDER 40

TYLER
GODSEY

BEN
HIGGINS

3 8 YE AR S OLD
Owner/Operator, 5 Points Music
Foundation

Roanoke native Tyler Godsey has suffered from profound hearing loss for most
of his life. His two children, Brooke, 7, and Forest, 10, were also born deaf,
and received cochlear implants as babies. They served as Godsey's inspiration
to launch 5 Points Music Foundation, an organization that provides free
music therapy and advocates for those with disabilities, including hearing
loss, blindness and other special needs. Godsey also opened The Sanctuary,
a 250-person music venue that has hosted over 300 events featuring artists
from around the world, in addition to private events and fundraisers. In 2018,
Godsey's children were diagnosed with Usher Syndrome, an incurable and
untreatable rare genetic disorder that will take their eyesight; this prompted
him to launch the Chasing the Light initiative. This program provides unique
travel experiences for families dealing with the disorder, such as a trip to see
the Northern Lights. "If there is one common thread between us, it is that we
all have our own unique story that includes sources of pain and challenges that
are often unknown and carried silently," Godsey says. "Though our stories are
all different, none of them are any more difficult than anyone else's. Each one
of us is fighting to find a moment that eases these burdens."

"THERE IS AN 'ART' TO AGING."
A 2006 Cum Laude graduate from James Madison University, Ben Higgins
received a bachelor's degree in health services administration with a minor in
business. As director at Friendship, Higgins oversees two campuses that offer
skilled nursing and rehabilitation. He also leads the charge on the organization's
culture change effort, including Friendship's efforts to support the American
Heart Association's annual Heart Walk. Having been born with a congenital
heart defect, coupled with his interest in health care services, Higgins naturally
gravitates to organizations that focus specifically on heart health. Despite the
obstacles, he is determined not to let a heart defect define who he is or the life
he wants to lead and puts his all into the needs of Friendship's community. "It's
my hope that my passion and the work that we do ... give our employees what
they need to create loving atmospheres and an environment where our patients
and their families can have some peace of mind," he says.




JIM
HOSCH

LY D I A
HIGGS

3 6 Y E A R S OLD
Environmental Educator & Community
Outreach Leader, Clean Valley Council

3 1 YE AR S OLD
Genetic Counselor II, Carilion Clinic High
Risk Genetics Program

"GENETICS...AFFORDS US TO CONSIDER
P R E V E N TAT I V E H E A LT H C A R E A N D M E D I C I N E I N
A WHOLE NEW WAY."
After earning her M.S. degree in Genetic Counseling from Arcadia University
(with distinction) and her board certification, Lydia Higgs became one of the
first licensed certified genetic counselors in Virginia when the state began
licensing the profession in 2017. Higgs is also a faculty instructor at Virginia
Tech Carilion School of Medicine and co-authored two papers published in
the leading peer-reviewed professional journal for genetic counselors. She is
a lifetime member of the Girl Scouts, a member of the Junior League of the
Roanoke Valley and is a volunteer speaker at the Roanoke Valley Governor's
School, encouraging those interested in her field to keep learning. "By bringing
this information into our community and educating people about the field, I
hope to help others live a more informed and healthful life and inspire the next
generation of providers to embrace genetics as a resource," she says.

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38

A B C D AWA R D R E CIPIE NT, JU NIOR LEAG U E OF ROANOKE VALLEY, 2019
C ON GR E S S ION A L AWA R D G OLD MEDAL, U NITED STATES C ONG RESS, 20 0 5
V IR G IN I A A S S OCI AT ION OF GENE TIC C OU NSELORS P RESID ENT, 2019-2 0 2 1
JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2020

RECOG NIZED A S T HE 2 0 1 9 RED CA P SU RVIVOR SP OK ESP ERSON
LED A T EA M T H AT COLLECT IVELY RA ISED OVER $ 1 0 , 0 0 0 IN SU P P ORT OF
T HE HEA RT WA LK
SERVED A S VIRG INI A'S SOLE REP RESENTAT IVE F OR T HE A HCA FUTUR E
LEA D ERS P ROG RA M , 2 0 1 6 - 1 7

"MY PASSION IS TO BOLSTER A SUSTAINABLE
AND LIVABLE COMMUNITY."
Jim Hosch has spent years donating time and resources to enhance our
community. Hosch has led and supported Get2KnowNoke, Roanoke City
Parks and Recreation and Roanoke County Parks, Recreation and Tourism,
collaborating on such activities such as a disc golf course in the Explore Park
Master Plan; he also aided the funding success of the Mayflower Hills course by
applying for the Capital Improvement Incentive Fund. He is heavily involved
in his community, coordinating and planning "Wasena Weekend" to celebrate
its centennial and growth, and is often seen installing bike racks in public
centers, mowing lawns of vacant properties and planting in public spaces. Now
with the Clean Valley Council, Hosch is excited to contribute even more to the
livability of our city. "I enjoy seeing the results of individuals' efforts impact
our community in a positive way, and love seeing the momentum of Roanoke's
'awesome' continue to build!"




P RESID ENT OF T HE WA SEN A NEIG HB ORHOOD F ORU M
LEA D ERSHIP ROA NOK E VA LLEY G RA D UAT E, 2 0 1 9
DA LE CA RNEG IE G RA D UAT E, 2 0 1 7

TheRoanoker.com

TYLER GODSEY: BONE AND SOL PHOTOGRAPHY / JIM HOSCH: KEMPER MILLS FANT

" W E H A V E . . . B U I LT O N S O M E T H I N G T H AT Y O U
CANNOT FAKE - AUTHENTICITY."

3 5 Y E A R S OLD
Director of Healthcare Operations, Friendship
Retirement Community


http://www.TheRoanoker.com

The Roanoker - January/February 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Roanoker - January/February 2020

The Roanoker - January/February 2020 - Intro
The Roanoker - January/February 2020 - Cover1
The Roanoker - January/February 2020 - Cover2
The Roanoker - January/February 2020 - 3
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The Roanoker - January/February 2020 - VL1
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The Roanoker - January/February 2020 - VL46
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The Roanoker - January/February 2020 - VL48
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