Commonwealth Attorney Chuck Slemp is tied to the UVa-Wise community in more ways than one.
Slemp is an alumnus of the college where he studied business and was a Napoleon Hill Scholar. He explained, “I decided to major in business. I knew I wanted to be a lawyer, but I knew from experience that I didn’t know enough about how to run a company.”
Slemp contributes his successes to the skills he learned in his business field, stating, “I don’t know that I would be the positive, successful risk taker that I am today if it hadn’t been for the business degree.” He went on to attend Regnant Law School and had the opportunity to attend Oxford as well.
Slemp professed, “Oxford was an amazing experience and when I saw the opportunity, I knew I had to go, and that it would not only provide a whole different experience in education but also a new personal experience.” Ironically, UVa-Wise political science professor Dr. Sheldon was Slemp’s professor at Oxford, and they wrote an article together after the experience about the beauty of the country.
As a Napoleon Hill Scholar, Slemp was able to reach out to high school students in Southwest Virginia and share his determination for success. His desire to talk to these students “changed my life because I found something that I really liked to do.”
While talking about his overwhelmingly successful career, Slemp stated, “with the knowledge from the business degree and the philosophies from Napoleon Hill, I’ve learned how to manage money, build relationships with people, and manage a business,” which he claims is what facilitated his success.
There are students at UVa-Wise who intern in his office daily, and when their names were mentioned, Slemp had nothing but positive words for their “great work,” explaining, “Each of the three are called to be a part of public service and work in criminal justice.”
Lastly, Slemp talked about his children and his aspirations for them in our area. He explained, “I grew up here, my wife grew up here and southwest Virginia is a very special place. My family has deep roots here for generations.” When Slemp was young, his parents instilled in him “the virtue of public service; therefore, “That’s the kind of values and hopes and dreams that my wife and I are trying to instill in our kids.”
Slemp explains that he would love to see his children grow up and stay in the area to contribute to the region. He even says that his kids “play with little Legos and say ‘this is the commonwealth attorney and this is the bad guy,’ and I’m really honored by that.”
Southwest Virginia is home for this family, and Slemp hopes his children will continue a legacy that gives back to its community. Our Commonwealth attorney is not only a commanding presence in the courtroom, but a father, husband and friend who loves southwest Virginia because “this is home and this is a special place to grow up, a special place to raise kids.”
This speaks volumes to not only students here at UVa-Wise, but to the community as a whole for someone so successful to be as humble and proud of where he came from as Slemp is. No matter who you ask, our area is a truly special place filled with hope, generosity and compassion for others, just as we see in our Commonwealth attorney.