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Elks select WVU-P president as citizen of the year

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West Virginia University at Parkersburg President Marie Foster Gnage has a lot on her plate.

And, thanks to her leadership, the West Virginia Elks Association has named Gnage its State Citizen of the Year. She also was named Parkersburg Citizen of the Year.

The Elks Association represents 22 lodges in West Virginia.

In addition to being the head of WVU-P since 2004, Gnage serves on the American Association of Community Colleges' 21st Century Commission on the Future of Community Colleges, and is currently chairwoman of AACC's Board of Directors and is past chairwoman of the American Council on Education's Network Executive Board.

According to Elks Lodge 198, Gnage earned the honor because of her personal interest and involvement in the revitalization of downtown Parkersburg; she exemplifies administrative leadership in the expansion of academics offered at WVU-P, including the startup of the school's Downtown Center on Market Street in downtown Parkersburg; and she offers input and guidance to the West Virginia National Guard and other state and local officials regarding the design of the Parkersburg armory on the campus of WVU-P.

In addition to her work with WVU-P and AACC, Gnage serves on the Mid-Ohio Valley Chamber of Commerce board, the Region IV Workforce Investment Board, the United Way of the Mid-Ohio Valley Board of Governors, the Mid-Ohio Valley Regional Council, the Campus Compact Board of Directors and the West Virginia Humanities Council.