A few of the recent rankings reports released had Virginia well represented, so I figured I’d share.

First, seven Virginia cities were added to the National Association of Home Builders’ Improving Market Index – it "tracks housing markets throughout the country that are showing signs of improving economic health."

Blacksburg, Charlottesville, Harrisonburg, Lynchburg, Roanoke, and Virginia Beach are on for the first time; Richmond and Williamsburg were already on the list. The only cloud: Danville dropped off the list this month.

WahooSecond, three Virginia universities were among US News and World Report’s Top 25 public schools: The University of Virginia (tied for second), the College of William & Mary (#6), and Virginia Tech (tied for 25th).

Just looking at liberal arts colleges, Washington and Lee University ranked #14 nationwide, and the University of Richmond was #25.

Finally, three Virginia companies were named to Fortune magazine’s list of 100 fastest-growing companies.

The companies are Iridium Communications, No. 70; Measurement Specialties, No. 89; and Portfolio Recovery Associates, No. 98.

McLean-based Iridium (#70) operates 66 communications satellites used for hand-held satellite phones. Hampton-based Measurement Specialties (#89) manufacturers a wide variety of sensors — humidity, pressure, air flow, and a lot more. Norfolk-based Portfolio Recovery Associates (#98), is a financial services company and "a leader in the U.S. consumer debt buying industry."