The gold standard that has stood the test of time for Fifty Years of successful business at Ideal Cabinets is a reflection of Virginia (Jenny) Rakes; it is who she is from her elegant manners to her welcoming downhome charm. As Ralph Lauren once said, “A lot of hard work is hidden behind nice things.” The products offered by Ideal Cabinets and its specialty services to customers are definitely “nice”. Much of the daily hard work is still executed by Virginia Rakes. She defines this quote! While her talents are many, she has humbly taken care of any task at hand throughout her Fifty years at Ideal Cabinets.
Born to a farmer in Montgomery County, VA, Virginia or “Jenny” is the second of eight siblings. Her close-knit family diligently worked the farm and came to appreciate the achievement of a hard day’s work and to value education. After graduating from Willis Highschool in 1959, Jenny set her sights on gaining more education at Holmes Theological Seminary where she graduated in 1962.
In 1963, Jenny returned to the New River Valley, possessing many new capabilities and began employment at Wade’s Super Market, where she would spend the next thirty years assisting with bookkeeping. The year 1963 would prove to be a banner year for Jenny, as it was also the year that she married her sweetheart, Ken.
While working for Wades, Jenny also began keeping the books for Ken’s new business that he started in 1970 — Ideal Cabinets. As the years passed, Jenny became a mother; first to Gina, and then again to Patrick (Pat). She continued working two bookkeeping jobs while she also performed the many tasks that comprised the roles of wife and mother – including providing encouragement and organization for her family. What would seem like an impossible undertaking to many, Jenny made look easy.
As the year’s passed, Jenny was much more than Ken’s bookkeeper at Ideal Cabinets, she was his business partner. She provided stability and energy for the company. Her financial astuteness grounded Ideal Cabinets through the years, even in times of precarious highs and lows in the building industry. She continuously sought education in the industry to better serve Ideal’s customers and help Ideal Cabinets grow and achieve the highest standards possible – the gold standard. With Jenny’s help, and hard work, Ideal has grown and flourished over the years, winning many awards, and serving many satisfied customers.
While her favorite pastime is being with family, she cherishes the memories made at Smith Mountain Lake. Also, a highlight is the changing of the seasons and spending time with her next-door neighbors in Botetourt County, her grandchildren.
While work is a high priority for Jenny, she also loves the beach. Relaxing on the beaches of North and South Carolina and Florida hold special memories for the Rakes family. She enjoys challenging Ken in his golf game, cheering on her grandkids as they compete in sports, or rooting for the Hokies or UVA (just depends😊 on the day)
While Jenny has contributed to the success of Ideal Cabinets by diligently providing her array of talents and skills over the last Fifty years, she continues daily to amaze us all with her work ethic. Elegant, classy, responsible, proficient, and capable define the legacy of Virginia Rakes, not only to Ideal Cabinets, but to all who love and respect her.