The Dickinson Building was named in honor of V. Earl Dickinson Sr. in recognition of his distinguished career as a public servant and his belief in the value of education and the arts to change people's lives. Through his efforts, Piedmont Virginia Community College was successful in securing state funding for the Building.

During the dedication ceremony of the Building in April 1999, PVCC President Frank Friedman said in his remarks to Delegate Dickinson, "I applaud the decision of an earlier College Board to name this building in your honor. We are truly fortunate to count you as a friend and supporter."

A native of Spotsylvania County and prominent citizen of the town of Mineral, Dickinson graduated from Spotsylvania High School and received his B.S. degree from the University of Richmond in 1948. He also attended the University of Virginia Law School and in 1991 received an Honorary Doctorate of Social Science from the University of Richmond.

Dickinson won the first of many elections in 1961, gaining a seat on the Mineral Town Council where he served for three years, followed by seven years as a member of the Louisa County Board of Supervisors, serving his last four years as chairman.

In 1972, he was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates for the 56th district representing Louisa, Fluvanna, Goochland and Spotsylvania counties and served until his retirement in 2002. When speaking of his tenure in the House of Delegates, Mr. Dickinson said, "All I have ever done since I've been here is to try to represent the people of my district well and to do a good job for the people of the Commonwealth."

He spent his retirement years with his wife of more than 50 years and with his children and grandchildren. He remained active in the community as a deacon at Mineral Baptist Church and served on the Mineral Historical Society's board of directors.

In a special session following Delegate Dickinson's death in June, 2006, the Virginia General Assembly passed House Joint Resolution No. 5120, Celebrating the life of the Honorable V. Earl Dickinson, Sr., to "mourn the loss of an exceptional citizen of the Commonwealth."

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