By Tim Ryan

Hampton Roads, a region rich with history and innovation, proudly celebrates two of its homegrown companies, Dollar Tree and Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII), for their remarkable achievement of making the 2024 Fortune 1000 list. Dollar Tree, based in Chesapeake, and HII, located in Newport News, have demonstrated resilience, strategic growth, and an unwavering commitment to excellence. Their success serves as a beacon of inspiration and a reminder of the potential within our region.

Ranked at 143, Dollar Tree continues to shine as a retail giant, providing essential goods at affordable prices. This Chesapeake-based company has created a substantial economic impact and showcased the power of strategic expansion and community engagement. Dollar Tree’s journey from a small retail business to a Fortune 1000 powerhouse is a testament to the entrepreneurial spirit and innovative mindset that defines Hampton Roads.

At rank 357, Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) stands as a pillar of excellence in the defense and shipbuilding industry. With a rich history of crafting some of the world’s most advanced ships, HII’s presence in Newport News underscores the region’s strategic importance and technical prowess. HII’s dedication to innovation, quality, and national security highlights the immense capabilities that Hampton Roads offers to both the nation and the world.

While we celebrate these significant achievements, it is essential to recognize that Hampton Roads has the potential to nurture even more companies that can rise to the ranks of the Fortune 1000. Our region is teeming with talent, innovation, and entrepreneurial energy. However, to harness this potential fully, we must unite as a community to support and uplift our local businesses.

Innovation thrives in environments where collaboration and support are prioritized. We can create a synergistic ecosystem that accelerates growth and development by fostering connections between entrepreneurs, business leaders, educators, and policymakers. Organizations like Innovate Hampton Roads are at the forefront of this movement, providing resources, mentorship, and networking opportunities crucial for budding businesses.

As we celebrate the success of Dollar Tree and HII, let us also take this moment to envision a future where more Hampton Roads companies grace the Fortune 1000 list. This vision requires collective effort—investing in education, supporting startups, encouraging innovation, and creating an environment where businesses can thrive.

Hampton Roads is not just a hidden hub of innovation and entrepreneurship; it is a dynamic region with the potential to lead. Let’s join hands to build stronger companies, foster a culture of innovation, and aim for more names from our beloved region on the Fortune 1000 list. Together, we can shape a prosperous future for Hampton Roads and beyond