Mildred Scott celebrated her 90th birthday on July 21 at the Holiday Inn Tanglewood surrounded by family and friends. Scott is well known in Vinton for her cakes, her cooking, the weddings she plans, her work for the Town of Vinton, her galas, and her support for the Republican Party.
Several well-known Republicans came to celebrate with her— Judge Glen Conrad and his wife Mary Ann, Virginia Delegate Chris Head and his wife Betsy, Bedford County Commonwealth’s Attorney Wes Nance and his wife Katy, and Drs. Nancy and Kevin Dye, to name a few. Chris and Betsy Head, who are well-known soloists at Bonsack Baptist, sang “Happy Birthday” to Scott.
Her daughter Cherie Charalambous with her husband Marko were here from Virginia Beach for the party, along with granddaughters Alexandra Mercer, and Amanda and Alissa Charalambous. Nephew Sid Harlow came with his wife Joanne.
Scott is originally from Roanoke. She has been a member of Thrasher Memorial United Methodist Church in Vinton for 40 years where she is a valued member of the cooking committee. They raise money for their missions by catering. She is most famous for her cakes and baked her own birthday cake for this event.
Scott graduated from Jefferson High School and majored in finance at Roanoke College. She worked for Colonial American National Bank for many years and served as Junior Vice President for Human Resources, back then known as the personnel department. That bank was sold to Crestar and then SunTrust where she worked as a loan officer.
She eventually left the bank to work for Roanoke County Treasurer Fred Anderson in the Treasurer’s Office. That’s when her enthusiasm for the Republican Party blossomed. Anderson asked her to coordinate the Sixth District Republican Gala along with Trixie Averill and Mary Ann Conrad. They rented Hotel Roanoke for the event, expecting 60 people but ended up with a crowd of 200.
Scott has headed up planning for four of those Republican galas, and for six in all. The purpose of the galas is to raise money for the candidates and have been held all over the Sixth District— at the Roanoke and Lynchburg Country Clubs, and in Lexington, in addition to Hotel Roanoke.
Scott has been a member of the Roanoke Valley Republican Women’s Club for 29 years, serving as president, vice president, and treasurer over that time. In April, she hosted the “Mildred Scott Gala” at the Vinton War Memorial— their ninth gala at the venue and the third in her name. While many Republican leaders and candidates attend, Scott discourages political speeches and encourages socializing and music. She cooked the entire meal for that event, in addition to baking the cake.
While Scott says she loves finance and “thrives on figures,” she says she “cooked my children’s way through college.” Her son, a lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps (now deceased) attended Virginia Tech; one daughter attended Roanoke College, and her youngest, the University of Georgia.
Scott makes many of the cakes for weddings at the Vinton War Memorial, along with those for other special occasions. The War Memorial shares her name with anyone looking for a baker.
Scott coordinated many large weddings across the state and even in North Carolina with her “Top to Bottom Weddings.” She decorated the churches, created all the flowers, coordinated the wedding, and did the reception. Her reputation spread by word of mouth.
Scott also worked for Vinton Town Manager Barry Thompson in the Finance Department where he was then Treasurer and Finance Director, after she retired from the county.
Thompson called and asked her to work just during tax season since she was familiar with the machinery and the system used; however, that part-time job turned into a five-year commitment of often 40-hour weeks. She was also very successful at collecting delinquent taxes for the Town of Vinton in person or by letter.