Lew Parker’s careers in two independent industries have had lasting positive effects on Loudoun County’s economic base and overall prominence in Virginia and nationally. In the role of engineer, technologist, and business executive, Lew’s contributions in the medical device arena have improved the lives of millions of individuals suffering from debilitating orthopedic conditions. The company he and his son-in-law Eric Major founded with other global leaders to produce the devices, K2M, grew quickly to become a leading high-tech employer in our region.
Lew’s other passion is winemaking, a craft he learned opportunistically from outside experts and through considerable trial and error in his pioneering efforts. His Willowcroft Farm on Mount Gilead would become the first winery established in Loudoun County, spawning an industry now populated with scores of growers and wineries, many producing award-winning wines and supporting a robust local tourist trade. Lew’s more than 40 years in the winemaking business gave him a front row seat in witnessing—and the opportunity to help navigate a path through—the many regulatory and commercial challenges that faced the rapid growth of an entirely new industry in Loudoun County and the state of Virginia.
Beyond his commitment to diverse careers in medical devices and winemaking, Lew’s philanthropic activity extends to promoting a new generation of scientific, engineering, and medical talent in our region. The Willowcroft Science Foundation endows science-based scholarships through the Community Foundation and the Loudoun Education Foundation. An annual scholarship is given to a student and a cash award to a teacher in recognition of exemplary participation in a Loudoun County high school science fair. Another award program targets young scientists aiming to seek NIH support for their compelling proposals. Lew is now exploring the creation of a scholarship program to improve language learning in county schools, an area that he feels is vitally important. In sum, Lew Parker, by his vocational example, initiative, and financial support, seeks to inspire motivated young people to pursue their own creative career paths for the betterment of our community and nation.