James River Association

More than one-third of all Virginians rely on the James River and its tributaries for water, commerce and recreation. After generations of nurturing its people, the James River needs nurturing itself. More »

Sports Backers

The Sports Backers produce and support nationally recognized quality sporting events and programs that motivate locals and visitors alike to be more active. More »

Better Housing Coalition

AMAZING things happen when you revitalize a neighborhood. Crime and blight decrease, investment increases and community pride swells. The Better Housing Coalition, a non-profit community development corporation, transforms communities through high-quality, eco-friendly affordable housing. More »


Meet our 2015 Summer Interns…


Sarah Maxwell –

I am the Robins Foundation Program intern. Interning at Robins has been one of my favorite internship experiences that I have had in my time as a student.  Recently graduating from Randolph-Macon College in May, this internship has been my first work experience with a bachelor’s degree.

Since interning at Robins, I have gotten to know the team very well.  I work primarily with Program Directors Chris Chin and Robert Dortch.  As the program intern, I spend a large portion of my day following up with the organization programs that Robins Foundation has funded in the past year, either on site or over the phone.  You really do meet so many amazing and committed people that are making a difference.  The Richmond nonprofit community is very diverse from the operation and size of its organizations to the needs that the organizations work to alleviate.

Future Plans: After interning for Robins, I am attending the Johns Hopkins University Carey Business School Global MBA program.  We’ll see how graduate school goes, but I am scheduled to graduate in 2017.  Following my MBA, I am hoping to seek employment in the aerospace industry as a career.

Victor Lilly –

I am the Communications Intern.  I have worked on projects that range from snapping candid shots of participants at CHAT to recording the CIG 2.0 (Community Innovation Grant) information sessions of 2015 on audio and video and transferring them to the website.  Through my experiences at Robins, I have learned a lot from the team.  Whether it is learning to work with all personalities or when to ask a question, the Robins team has helped me grow as a person and a professional during my time here.

Working with Martha Loving was the best, and she always has a mission for me to accomplish in my downtime at work.  These ranged from simply moving boxes and changing water jugs to exploring the office to find the mysterious missing digital camera cord.  Which, we did find to our surprise and accomplishment.  In addition to my missions for Martha, my major project has been developing videos with audio overlay for SmartSimple registration and Robins Foundation’s CIG 2.0 information sessions.  These materials allow the organizations that apply for Robins grants to view information in a user friendly format from the website.

Future Plans: Following my internship at Robins Foundation, I am finishing my undergraduate studies at Virginia Union University in the fall.  Also, I recently was hired as an intern for the Washington Redskins Football Team.  This opportunity will allow me to work in Washington, D.C. and gain more experience in technology and communications.

Tracie Mooneyham –

I have really enjoyed my time interning with Robins Foundation.  This has been my first real internship experience! Previously, I have worked virtually for a publisher reviewing book submissions as well as for an online women’s magazine where I managed their social media and marketing campaigns. The chance to work in an actual establishment, not to mention such a well-respected one, has meant a lot to me.

I have always worked full time while pursuing my degree. So naturally I was worried that I wouldn’t get the opportunity to try out a new profession because of my heavy schedule. However, with a little help from the EDGE Career Center at Randolph-Macon and the wonderful staff at Robins, I found the perfect fit. I have been able to see a whole new way of how I can help those around me to grow and thrive.

Here at Robins I work primarily with Martha Loving, the office manager, and Kelly Chopus, our executive director.  I am the Administration and Operations Intern. However, I have had the opportunity to work with the whole staff on different projects in order to see every aspect of grant work with non-profits. I tend to do a lot of communication work within the office and with our partners; I set up meetings, research new ideas on grant making and in general do whatever I can to “help out!” I’ve gotten to see some amazing changes being made within the city of Richmond! Not to mention meeting some awesome people! I always leave the office feeling inspired by what Robins Foundation does for the community.

Future Plans: After partnering with each of the staff members at Robins I find that I’m very interested in non-profit and foundational work. I will be graduating in the spring of 2016 with my bachelors in English and hope to continue to work with Robins in some capacity while I begin the next chapter of my life.

Happy Birthday, Mr. Robins!

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Edwin Claiborne Robins was born in Richmond, Virginia in 1910 to Claiborne and Martha Taylor Robins.  His early childhood education was at McGuire’s University School.  It was here that Claiborne received the values he would carry throughout his business and his life.  He attended the University of Richmond, graduating with a B.A. degree in English in 1931.  Following his education at the University of Richmond, by 1933 Claiborne had earned his B.S. degree from the School of Pharmacy at the Medical College of Virginia. He would be 105 years old today.

Having attained his degree in pharmaceutical studies, Claiborne joined his mother and two other employees at A.H. Robins Co.  The family business was begun in 1866 by his grandfather, Albert Hartley Robins as a small apothecary and manufacturing chemist’s shop at Second and Marshall Streets.  His mother, Martha Taylor Robins struggled throughout Claiborne’s childhood to run the company and raise him after her husband, Claiborne Robins passed in 1912.

As Claiborne worked to renew the company, he took to the road as a detail man, salesman for A.H. Robins, marketing some of their most known products across the United States.  While traveling, Claiborne met his future wife, Lora McGlasson, in Waco, Texas.  Meeting on June 10, 1937, the young couple was married a little over a year later on June 24, 1938 in Waco.  Claiborne continued to work as a detail man for A.H. Robins until the arrival of his first child. Claiborne and Lora had three children, Lora Elizabeth “Betty,” E. Claiborne Jr. and Ann Carol.

In 1969, Robins donated $50 million to the University of Richmond. At the time, it was the largest cash gift ever presented to an American university, and it came at a critical juncture. Robins challenged Richmond “to become the finest small private university in the nation.”  Giving not only to the University of Richmond, he also made gifts to the Medical College of Virginia, Virginia Union University, and Virginia Commonwealth University.

Claiborne Robins showed equal respect for all persons, whatever their station in life, and he was intensely sensitive to every individual’s feelings.  Being both a realist and a visionary, he had the ability to immerse himself in detail while never losing sight of the whole.  His commitment to excellence and to the best possibilities of the future were inspiring, just as his competitiveness and unconquerable spirit were energizing.  One of the most remarkable things about him was the fact that he was untouched by his success.  With a passion for travel, Claiborne was always looking for a new opportunity to see different cultures and experience new places.

By 1970, E. Claiborne Robins was Chairman of the Board of A.H. Robins Company, which had grown to a multinational corporation engaged primarily in the manufacturing and marketing of pharmaceuticals and consumer products.  During his tenure as the company head, Claiborne was known for his attention to detail and treatment of his employees.  Claiborne attributed his company’s success to the good people that worked at A.H. Robins.  Rewards for hard work included turkeys for Thanksgiving, ham and bonuses for Christmas, and $25 and a day off for birthdays.  For a time, one of the best perks were the company trips to places like New York, Florida, and even Havana.   When Mr. Robins retired in 1975, the company generated $241 million in revenue.  He would later retire as Chairman of the Board in 1989.

He passed away on July 6, 1995 and is missed by all who knew him.