What is it like to live, work, and play in the Roanoke Region of Virginia? See it through the eyes of some of the region’s young professionals in their own words.
Jim Casey, 36, is an OBGYN working at Carilion Clinic and lives in the Raleigh Court neighborhood with his family (wife, Emily, and son, Will). The Caseys came to the Roanoke Region thanks to job opportunities three years ago. He even ran the Blue Ridge Marathon “on a whim” right before making the move because they were looking at a house the weekend of the event.
“I love the accessibility of the outdoors from work and home, and the small/big town feel together,” Jim said about the region. “There’s just enough size and quirk for everyone to find their groove.”
5 Questions with Jim Casey
How long have you lived in the Roanoke Region?
Three years. Emily was familiar with the area having graduated from Roanoke College. I previously hiked the Appalachian Trail when I was 19 and loved the mountains. I was hired here from my job at Vanderbilt in Nashville, and while we receive some stares wondering why, the outdoor scene here can’t be beat and it’s an amazing place to raise a family.
What brought you here?
The outdoors and lifestyle. Restaurants are close by, rush hour doesn’t exist (in any real form), and with my parents living in Wintergreen, VA, and my in-laws in Richmond, it splits the distance nicely.
What’s your favorite part about living in the Roanoke Region?
Being in medicine, free time can be limited, so things need to be close by for me to do anything. Within 15 minutes of both my work and my house, I can be in world-class biking on the Blue Ridge Parkway, mountain biking on the sole IMBA Silver designated trails east of the Mississippi or running (a small part of) 30 miles of greenway or endless singletrack in every direction.
What professional/social groups are you involved in?
I honestly jump around a good bit. With work, it’s tough to commit to anything regularly. Lately, I’ll try to stop by on a free day and do trail work on Rock ‘n’ Roll at Carvins Cove, join a weeknight ride at RMA or Deschutes, or meet up with some of the folks in the Roanoke Triathlon Club. Social media has made accessing many of these clubs easy, though I think talking with others in the parking lots before/after a workout has led to the most connections.
What advice do you have for meeting/finding new people?
Whether you’re outgoing or a wallflower, if you just come by any of the weekly group walks/runs/rides, you will make new friends. I was surprised at how low key and approachable they were. I thought everyone would be hardcore (not my scene), but even the elite athletes are happy to hang out on a no-drop ride with my mom.