Virginia

Virginia is a study in contrasts. From the progressive north to the conservative south, few states have as dramatic a geographic swing as Virginia. Virginia is therefore clearly a state where opportunities, and some notable challenges, abound.

With Barack Obama's victory in 2008, Virginia continued its modern day tradition of breaking barriers. Somewhat surprisingly, Virginia was the first state in the Union to elect an African-American as Governor when Doug Wilder was elected in 1989. Currently, the contested nature of Virginia politics is reflected in the split control of the Legislature (Democrats control the Senate; Republicans control the House), and the back-and-forth results of the past four gubernatorial elections. With Tim Kaine and Mark Warner, progressives have had a strong leader in the Governor's office. Yet we've also had some major losses, including the recent gubernatorial loss to Bob McDonnell.

All of this means that Virginia is clearly a state within which progressives can make major gains. In 2013 and 2014, Progressive Majority will be working to build a strong team of progressive candidates who can move up the pipeline and help ensure that this "purple" state becomes a solid base for progressive politics.

 

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Important Dates
Go to the Virginia Secretary of State website to find out important dates and filing deadlines. 
Joel McDonald

Virginia
Virginia Beach School Board
2012
Challenger
http://www.votemcdonald.org

Joel McDonald iran for School Board in 2012 because he believes in the fair treatment of those in the education field and to ensure the success of students. A third generation resident of Virginia Beach, Joel is a graduate of Virginia Beach Public Schools. For the last six years, he worked as a Data Support Specialist and School Improvement Coordinator. Joel is a proud member of the Virginia Beach Education Association. He served as a delegate to the Virginia Education Association (VEA) Convention and the National Education Association (NEA) Convention. In 2008, Joel completed his associate’s degree in Information Technology and is currently studying Political Science at Old Dominion University.

David Bernard

Virginia
State Senate - District 10
2011
Challenger
http://www.bernardforsenate.com

David Bernard has a long history of service.  He helped get state funding for his local library and rescue squad, becoming the first on the rescue squad to be certified as an EMT and in 1992, he started his own plumbing business.  He does not shy away from progressive issues.  As a member of the Sierra Club, David advocates for environmental protection to allow all Virginians the opportunity to enjoy the natural resources around them. Bernard is running to put people back to work, protect Virginia's natural resources, and pave the way with innovative, next generation technologies designed and built by Virginians.

Adrianne Bennett

Virginia
State Assembly
2011
Challenger
District 21
http://www.adriannebennettforvirginia.com/

Adrianne Bennett's aspirations to become a public servant were influenced by many of her close family members who are committed to promoting social justice and good government. Her work in Norfolk is on behalf of underrepresented children and those in the foster care system.  She considers it a very rewarding part of her practice in being able to represent those who otherwise do not have a voice in the courtroom. Her run for State Assembly means extending the representation of less privileged citizens to the state stage. 

Esteban Garces

Virginia
District 2
2011
Open Seat
Russell and Wise
http://www.estebangarces.com/

Esteban Garces is a strong voice for justice in Northern Virginia. He is a lifelong resident of Northern Virginia where he attended public schools.  He is also a University of Mary Washington alumnus.  Esteban works for a nonprofit group that advocates for fair and safe policies throughout the Commonwealth.  Esteban Garces draws on years of experience working with Northern Virginia communities on issues related to education and community development.

Al Nevarez

Virginia
County Supervisor
2011
Challenger
Sterling District
http://www.al4sterling.com/

 

Al grew up in a working class family – his dad worked in telecommunications, climbing telephone poles and fixing ATMs, while his mom worked as a community activist with local non-profits. It was from them that Al learned the value of hard work and community involvement, lessons that inspired him to run for office in Sterling.