Sharon Ritchie, owner of Chapters Bookshop & Wine Cellar in Galax, Va., is joining the Galax City Council, effective July 1, after a recent local election, Bookselling This Week reported. When she announced earlier this spring that she was running for the council, Ritchie told the Galax Gazette: "I've run my own business for 21 years now. I feel like I can bring things to the council and the city--some ideas to help grow business. I think the city needs some help with economic development and business growth....
"I think the dream's always been to have a big company come in. I just don't think that's going to happen. These aren't the days of the Hanes [textile] plant. So I think small businesses are the way to go. If we can find good, viable businesses to be into town, it'll be the saving grace of us. If you think of the businesses we have in town now, most everybody in town works for a small business. I think finding viable businesses who will come in town and stay open, will employ a lot of people, is the way to go."
Chapters Bookshop was recently named one of the best bookstores in the southwest region of the state by Virginia Living. "With a strong focus on customer service and a commitment to excellence, we believe the store's reputation as not just a place to shop but as a gathering place for locals and travelers has helped us become a downtown Galax destination," said Ritchie.