sevacf’s committed staff
R. Stephen Best, Sr., Chief Executive Officer
R. Stephen Best, Sr. is a native of Virginia and raised in the Deep Creek area of Chesapeake. A product of Chesapeake Public Schools, he holds an Associate’s Degree in Fire Science, a Bachelor of Science Degree in Governmental Administration, a Master’s Degree in Business Administration and a Juris Doctor from the Regent University School of Law. Appointed Fire Chief and Emergency Services Coordinator for the City of Chesapeake in 1998, Chief Best served 37 years with the Chesapeake Fire Department, retiring in January, 2010. Following five years of service as a Program Director, developing catastrophic response plans for coastal Virginia and Northeast North Carolina for the Commonwealth of Virginia, he was appointed Chief Executive Officer for SEVACF on December 1, 2015. Selected as Chesapeake’s First Citizen in 2015, Chief Best remains very active in the community.
Janice Coppa, Director of Finance and Administration
Originally from Michigan, Janice graduated from Northern Michigan University in 1982 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting. She has been a Controller in the private sector for over 25 years. Janice moved to Virginia in 2002, joining SEVACF in 2014 as Director of Finance and Administration. In her present role, she oversees all financial oversight, internal and fund accounting/reporting, along with general operations and administration.
Stephanie Calway, Donor Development Specialist
A native of Virginia Beach, Stephanie holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Communications and a Master of Science Degree in Education from Old Dominion University. Having joined the Foundation in 2015, Stephanie is responsible for producing our annual report, newsletters and social media content, while overseeing our grant and scholarship programs.