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This is Old Dominion University’s fifth annual State of the Commonwealth Report. While it represents the work of many people connected in various ways to the university, the report does not constitute an official viewpoint of Old Dominion, its president, John R. Broderick, the Board of Visitors, the Strome College of Business or the generous donors who support the activities of the Dragas Center for Economic Analysis and Policy.

While the enthusiasm we have for our work remains high, it has been dampened by the recent passing of George Dragas, the individual most responsible for perceiving the need for an annual report on the state of Hampton Roads 20 years ago and procuring the financial support to sustain it. The State of the Region Report: Hampton Roads was the progenitor of the State of the Commonwealth Report. George was a very successful businessman, who simultaneously exhibited marvelous foresight and a keen sense of civic duty. Without George and his family, there would be no State of the Commonwealth Report and no Dragas Center for Economic Analysis and Policy. We are indebted to him.