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Local Associations Rack Up Election Wins

The Virginia Beach Education Association takes its charge to help elect friends of public education to office seriously.

How seriously? “Well, our members went all out,” says VBEA President Trenace Riggs. “We made phone calls, we canvassed neighborhoods, we made signs—you name it, we did it.”

Now, those same members, and the city’s students, will be reaping the benefits of VBEA efforts for years. Five school board seats were contested; all five were won by VBEA-recommended candidates. The mayor and entire city council were up for election; all those positions are also now filled by candidates supported by VBEA.

Among the newly-elected members of the school board are recently retired VBEA member Beverly Anderson and former member Joel McDonald, who resigned his position as a computer resource specialist with city schools before seeking office.

“We’re thrilled,” says Riggs. “We had some great candidates and we got behind them.”

VBEA isn’t alone—several local associations around the state also got very involved in local elections, with excellent results. Among the victories:

• In Alexandria, members going the extra mile resulted in candidates recommended by the Education Association of Alexandria winning 8 of 9 school board seats and the mayor’s office, as well as sweeping city council positions.

• The Richmond Education Association made recommendations in races for 7 of the 9 school board positions. Of the 7 REA-backed candidates, 6 were elected.

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