CLIFTON FORGE — Holly Hall of Buena Vista has been named director of Educational Talent Search at Dabney S. Lancaster Community College.

The announcement was made by Gary Keener, DSLCC vice president of Workforce Solutions and Community Education.

Hall replaces Christie Hardbarger, who retired at the end of the fall semester after more than 20 years with the DSLCC Talent Search program. 

Hall has served as the Talent Search advisor for middle schools and high schools in Buena Vista and Rockbridge County for the past five years. She is also an alumna of the DSLCC Talent Search program. 

She officially began her new role on March 25.

“It has been an absolute honor and pleasure to serve students in the Rockbridge County area and work with the wonderful people at Parry McCluer and Maury River Middle Schools, Parry McCluer and Rockbridge County high schools,” said Hall.

“As a first-generation college student and Talent Search alumna, I understand the obstacles those students face,” she added. “I would not be where I am today without Talent Search, and I look forward to continuing to help students, like myself, achieve their goals of going to college the same way that Talent Search helped me when I was one of their students. 

“Becoming the director of the program that helped me is truly a full circle experience for me,” Hall continued.

Hall is a 2010 graduate of Mary Baldwin College with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a 2013 graduate of Liberty University with a master of education degree with a specialization in school counseling.

“Holly has hands-on experience as a Talent Search advisor and extensive knowledge of the region served by the DSLCC Talent Search program that will serve her well as she transitions into the director’s position,” added Keener.

“I would like to thank Christie Hardbarger for her service, leadership, and passion for this wonderful program,” added Hall. “I would also like to recognize the Talent Search staff — Karen Robertson, Noreen Mitchell, Ginni Phillips, Ellen Wood-ruff and Jimmy Smith for their hard work especially during this difficult time. Talent Search is actively using a variety of methods, including online platforms, to continue to serve our students.”

Talent Search is a federally funded program which serves students in high schools and middle schools within the DSLCC service area that are identified as potential first-generation college students.

The program is designed to encourage and supports students in grades seven through 12, as well as high school dropouts or post-secondary stop-outs, to continue their education.

Talent Search is currently accepting applications for students in grades 6-12.

An interest form should be completed first; that form may be found at: 

The Talent Search office is located on the DSLCC campus in Clifton Forge.

For more information, about this free educational program,  email Hall at or call (540) 784-3520.