Always there for you...

With more than 20 years of successful experience providing fiscal, strategic and operations leadership in a variety of uniquely challenging settings, Virginia has a strong record of goal-driven performance in the public and private sectors as a public and non-profit executive, consultant, small business owner, and government official. 


Prior to co-founding Graves Shepard Consulting, Virginia worked for Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear for eight years, serving as his Director of Constituent Services, Director of State Grants, County Liaison, and Executive Assistant.  She considers serving and supporting citizens and local officials of the Commonwealth as they interact with and navigate Kentucky State Government's eleven Cabinets as some of her most valuable professional experience.   Prior to service in state government, Virginia worked in local government and has held several positions dedicated to fundraising and community.  As Finance Director, she worked with a team to raise more than one million dollars for a mayoral race, and as an Executive Producer for an independent film, she again raised more than $1 million.  Virginia has extensive experience in the nonprofit sector as an Executive Director, fundraiser and board member. 


Virginia is a native of Lexington, Kentucky, and graduate of Lexington Community College/University of Kentucky and Kentucky State University.   She holds an associate's degree in liberal arts and a bachelor's degree in English.  She is married to the love of her life, James Scully, and enjoys spending time with her life-long role model, her Mom, Barbara, dog, Baron , cats Benny, Annabelle and Lulubelle, and 40+ year old cockatiel, Pepe.  Horse racing, travel, politics, reading and cooking are some of her passions.


Renee Shepard

Virginia Graves

Headquartered in Lexington, Kentucky, Graves Shepard Consulting (GSC) offers the insight and knowledge of 40 years of experience in nonprofit and public sector work.  Clients can move forward with the confidence that GSC has their best interest in mind.  We provide a comprehensive range of services with a focus on downtown revitalization, business improvement districts, advocacy & coalition building, association management, strategic planning, nonprofit board & policy development, event creation, fundraising and grant writing.  This minority-owned business guarantees exceptional results and solutions to meet your high standards and individual needs.


Renee is a lifelong resident of Kentucky where she lives with her husband, Pete, and her two daughters, Coco and Stella and her two step-children, Madison and Cameron.  She received her Bachelor of Science in Landscape Architecture from the University of Kentucky’s College of Agriculture and her Master of Public Administration from the Martin School of Public Policy and Administration at the University of Kentucky.


Prior to forming GSC she was the President of Downtown Lexington Corporation (DLC), a nonprofit advocacy and promotional group for downtown Lexington for 10 years.  During Renee’s tenure the DLC experienced many successes including being named Commerce Lexington’s 2015 Nonprofit Small Business of the Year, the creation of the Downtown Lexington Management District, the growth of their signature event Thursday Night Live and a threefold increase in their operating budget.


Renee is involved with numerous civic and nonprofit groups and is committed to making a difference in her community.  Currently she is Chair of Lexington’s Homelessness Prevention & Intervention Board.  Renee has served on many nonprofit boards and committees over the last 17 years serving in various leadership roles.  In 2011 Renee joined the Rotary Club of Lexington and is a member of their Endowment Board.  Renee also served as an ambassador for Commerce Lexington for two years.  In 2013 Renee was recognized as the Boys & Girls Club’s Role Model of the Year; additionally she received the Lexington Young Professional Association’s Rising Star Award in 2005 and 2008.  In her limited spare time Renee enjoys traveling and reading but most of all enjoys spending time with her family.  Renee has three pets that she adores two dogs, Karl and Caesar, and a cat, Glitter.