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PLP Alumni News
Shaun Kenney and Jesse Ferguson joined Coy Barefoot yesterday on "Charlottesvilleâ€”Right Now!" to recap this year's General Assembly session. Shaun is the Director of Communications for the Republican Party of Virginia. Jesse is the spokesman for Delegate Brian Moran, (Chairman of the Democratic Caucus) and is a graduate of the Political Leaders Program Class of 2004.
Topics included the transportation package, the slavery regret bill,
re-regulation of Dominion Virginia Power, the success of eminent domain
legislation, and the failure of legislation to raise the minimum wage.
Shaun and Jesse also share their thoughts on what we might expect from their partyâ€™s
candidates in this yearâ€™s elections.
The new issue of Virginia Magazine, a publication of the University of Virginia Alumni Association, profiles the work of the Sorensen Institute.
The articleâ€”"Running on Respect: UVa's Sorensen Institute Wants to Clean Up Politics"â€” includes interviews with Executive Director Sean O'Brien and a number of our alumni including: Delegate and State Board member Jennifer McClellan (Political Leaders Program Class of 2001, Candidate Training Program Class of 2005), Delegate Lynwood Lewis (Political Leaders Program Class of 1995, Candidate Training Program Class of 1999), Charlottesville City Councilor Dave Norris (Candidate Training Program Class of 2006), Stafford County Supervisor Mark Dudenhefer (Candidate Training Program Class of 2005), Delegate Robert Hurt (Political Leaders Program Class of 2000), and Congressional candidate Al Weed (Candidate Training Program Class of 2003).
This is a wonderful article that all our alumni are encouraged to read.
As a sidenote, the cover story of this same issue of Virginia Magazineâ€”"Down on the Corner," about the history of the University of Virginia community, was written by the Sorensen Institute's Coy Barefoot.
Mike Taylor has announced his candidacy for the office of Pittsylvania County Sheriff. Mike is the first Virginian ever to have graduated from three Sorensen programs: the Danville/Southside Leaders Program Class of 2005, the Candidate Training Program Class of 2006, and the Political Leaders Program Class of 2006. Mike made the announcement in the Pittsylvania County Circuit Courtroom on Tuesday afternoon. According to an article in the Pittsylvania Star-Tribune:
Taylor, a 53-year-old Ringgold resident, will run as an independent. "With a deep-seated background in the understanding of law enforcement, a working relationship with countless criminal justice professionals in all levels of government, respecting the cultural diversities found within our communities and the commitments made to better grasp leadership responsibilities, I am self-assured I have prepared myself to represent you," Taylor said in a 20-minute announcement in Pittsylvania County Circuit Court. Taylor, who has spent 32 years in the sheriff's office, is the second in-house candidate to announce. Last week, Maj. Gary W. Goodson Jr., also from Ringgold, announced his bid.
Margaret "Margi" Vanderhye, a graduate of the Political Leaders Program Class of 2006 and the Candidate Training Program Class of 2005, is the subject of an article in the Great Falls Connection newspaper, February 21 edition. The articleâ€”"Vanderhye Promises Real Solutions"â€”includes a profile of Margi and details about her plans to run against Delegate Vince Callahan in the 34th House District this year.
"In the midst of the breakdown on
negotiations in transportation legislation, I came to the conclusion
that I wanted to be a part of the solutions in Richmond," she said. Vanderhye
will be challenging long-standing Republican incumbent Del. Vincent
Callahan (R-34), should he choose to seek re-election. Callahan has
served as delegate of Virginia's 34th district for 39 years, and is
chair of the House of Delegates Appropriations committee. Callahan has
not yet confirmed whether he will pursue re-election. "I will announce my decision in March like I always do," said Callahan.
Vanderhye said that she believes the residents of the 34th district are ready for change. "The district and the voters have changed, but the representative has not," she said.
It was recently announced that Susan Horne, a graduate of the Political Leaders Program Class of 1999, is the new President of Lead Virginia. Susan most recently served as the President and CEO of Leadership Fairfax, Inc. and as Vice Mayor of the Town of Leesburg. She also served as a member of the founding Steering Committee for Lead Virginia.
From today's RTD: Jensen's tenure has been widely praised by Democrats and Republicans...[she] announced her departure yesterday to members of the Senate Privileges and Elections Committee.
At our 2006 Alumni Reunion last October, Jean was the recipient of the Sorensen Institue's first-ever Expression of Ideals Award.
Adisa Muse, a graduate of the Political Leaders Program Class of 2003 has signed on with Americans Against Escalation in Iraq, a national issue advocacy organization that has been created to fight President Bush's plans to send more troops into Iraq. Most recently Adisa worked for a presidential campaign in the Congo during their historic elections last year.
Sorensen alumnus Steven Gould (Political Leaders Program Class of 2006) is a Senior Special Assistant to Governor Kaine on Policy. He joined Coy Barefoot on "Charlottesville--Right Now!" this past Friday to discuss the Governor's Fellows Program.
This program is open to all graduating university and college students in Virginia, as well as current graduate students. Participants spend part of their summer working in the highest levels of the Executive branch alongside Governor Kaine and his closest advisors.
(P.S. â€”during the interview, Steven announces publicly for the first time some important news about his own future plans)