Skip to content Skip to navigation

Newsroom

Election night wins for Sorensen alumni

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

The Sorensen Institute congratulates the following alumni on winning their elections on Tuesday, November 7:

Statewide Office
Ralph Northam, CTP 2007, Governor

House of Delegates
Lashrecse Aird, PLP 2015, 63rd District
John Bell, CTP Spring 2009, 87th District
David Bulova, PLP 1997, 37th District
Lee Carter, CTP 2016, 50th District
Glenn Davis, PLP 2007, 84th District
Scott Garrett, CTP 2006, 23rd District
Cliff Hayes, CTP 2001, 77th District
Charniele Herring, PLP 2006, CTP 2008, 46th District
Mark Keam, PLP 2012, 35th District
Kaye Kory, CTP Winter 2009, 38th District
Jay Leftwich, PLP 1996, 78th District
Alfonso Lopez, PLP 2003, 49th District
Danny Marshall, CTP 2001, 14th District
Jason Miyares, PLP 2000, 82nd District
Mike Mullin, PLP 2015, 93rd District
Chris Peace, PLP 2004, 97th District
Mark Sickles, PLP 1998, CTP 2001, 43rd District

Local Office
Pam Carter, CTP Winter 2011, Augusta County Board of Supervisors
Mark Dudenhefer, CTP 2005, Stafford County Board of Supervisors
Clay Jackson, PLP 2011, Madison County Board of Supervisors
Kate Acuff, PLP 2013, Albemarle County School Board, Jack Jouett District
Jim Kelly, PLP 2015, Williamsburg-James City County School Board, Jamestown District
Jon Russell, PLP 2016, Culpeper Town Council
Clay Gravely, PLP 2012, CTP 2013 Commonwealth’s Attorney, Martinsville
David Ledbetter, PLP 2007, Commonwealth’s Attorney, Waynesboro
Todd Divers, CTP 2013, Commissioner of Revenue, Charlottesville
Ross Mugler, Hampton Roads Regional Board Member, Commissioner of Revenue, Hampton

We also thank all of those who stood for election, regardless of the outcome. It takes great courage and commitment to run for office, and you should be proud to have stepped forward. We look forward to seeing what you continue to do to promote the values of trust, civility, and respect in Virginia.

If you are interested in becoming part of a Sorensen Institute program, applications for the 2018 Political Leaders Program are being accepted through Monday, November 13 at midnight. Applications for the 2018 Candidate Training Program will open in December and be accepted through January 31.

PLP 2017 Profile: Hendrick Booz

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Name:

William Hendrick Booz V

Birthplace and/or where you grew up:

Fairfax, VA

Current Digs:

Alexandria, VA

Occupation:

High School English teacher

Favorite part about the job:

FCPS pays me to read, study, and talk about literature and language.

Your first job ever:

Entrepreneur: Booz Landscaping (didn't we all have some sort of part-time job when we were young?)

Favorite Book:

The Magus, by John Fowles

Comfort Food:

All different kinds of mac-and-cheese

What’s playing in your car right now?

Saxon Shore & Rogue Wave

Next journey?

Copenhagen, Denmark with a contingent of my high school students

Favorite Virginia destination?

The Shenandoah: river or fores

First political memory?

Campaigning for president of the SCA in 6th grade (I won, by the way: Booz for Everyone became a standard political slogan)

Best advice you ever got?

Think about the people you engage; now, come at them trying to understand their point of view or situation.

If you could have dinner with anyone currently living, whom would it be and why?

Stephen Hawking

One thing most people would be surprised to learn about you?

I love interior design.

Ambition, political or otherwise?

One day, I'd like to serve in a policy position for the Commonwealth of Virginia

Favorite part about the PLP so far?

If I say Friday night caucus, I will get in trouble, so I won't even mention that. The spontaneous interactions with my classmates always invigorates and astounds me.

PLP 2017 Profile: Julianne Condrey

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Name: Julianne S. Condrey

Birthplace and/or where you grew up: Chicago, Illinois

Current Digs: Western Hanover, VA

Occupation: Legislative Assistant for Senator Amanda Chase

Favorite part about the job: Meeting interesting people and learning more about Virginia

Your first job ever: Scooping ice cream!

Favorite Book: Persuasion by Jane Austen

Comfort Food: risotto

What’s playing in your car right now? Adele

Next journey? Quebec? Boston? France? Italy?

Favorite Virginia destination? I love so many places in Virginia! Monticello, Barboursville, Virginia Beach, Leesburg, Old Town Alexandria....

First political memory? Listening to President Ronald Reagan

Best advice you ever got? "When you're not sure what to do, just start doing the next thing."

If you could have dinner with anyone currently living, whom would it be and why? Condoleezza Rice; I heard her speak at the Richmond forum years ago and thought she was fascinating

One thing most people would be surprised to learn about you? I've worked as a line chef

Ambition, political or otherwise? To own a bed and breakfast when I *retire*

Favorite part about the PLP so far? Getting to know my incredible classmates and visiting the corners of the Commonwealth

PLP 2017 Profile: Michael Berlucchi

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Name: 

Michael Berlucchi

Birthplace and/or where you grew up:

Virginia Beach

Current Digs:

Virginia Beach

Occupation:

Community Engagement Manager, Chrysler Museum of Art.

Favorite part about the job:

I serve the Chrysler's mission to enrich and transform lives. We bring art and people together through experiences that delight, inform, and inspire. I create and implement educational and community partnerships to engage diverse audiences across Hampton Roads and develop new strategic initiatives to expand the Museum’s audiences, particularly those in underserved constituencies.

Your first job ever:

17th Street Surf Shop

Favorite Book:

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Comfort Food:

Pizza

What’s playing in your car right now?

Michael Berlucchi

Next journey?

Paris, France

Favorite Virginia destination?

Virginia Beach!

First political memory?

Fall of the Berlin Wall

Best advice you ever got?

"When you get what you want, stop talking."

If you could have dinner with anyone currently living, whom would it be and why?

George H.W. Bush.

One thing most people would be surprised to learn about you?

I'm a bargain hunter; I love a good deal!

Ambition, political or otherwise?

I would like to become a more effective and impactful advocate for the organizations and issues I care about.

Favorite part about the PLP so far?

The chance to learn from my classmates and visit destinations throughout Virginia I had never seen. 

 

Autumn Gala Nov. 16

Monday, October 16, 2017

Sorensen Institute Autumn Gala
Thursday, November 16 • 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.
The Ritz-Carlton, Pentagon City
Cocktail attire

This Nov. 16, we’re hosting a conversation with former Congressmen Tom Davis and Martin Frost, authors of “The Partisan Divide.” Join us for a night of Trust, Civility and Respect in Politics.

Tickets are available at http://forms.hoosonline.virginia.edu/sorensen-autumn.

See you there!

2017 PLP Profile: John Butler

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Name:

John F. Butler

Birthplace and/or where you grew up:

Reston, Virginia

Current Digs:

Norfolk, Virginia

Occupation:

Virginia Assistant Attorney General

Favorite part about the job:

I enjoy finding community solutions to address public safety.

Your first job ever:

Around age 10, I would pull my Red Flyer Wagon with a cooler full of sodas to sell to thirsty golfers.

Favorite Book:

(Political) Truman by David McCullough; (Non-Political) Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand.

Comfort Food:

My great aunt Betty Butler's spaghetti.

What’s playing in your car right now?

Jazz (Miles Davis/Bill Evans/John Coltrane)

Next journey?

Overseas

Favorite Virginia destination?

Blue Ridge Parkway

First political memory?

Doug Wilder elected first African American governor of Virginia.

Best advice you ever got?

A calling is the place where your deeply felt gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.

If you could have dinner with anyone currently living, whom would it be and why?

Elon Musk. To engage someone with an inspiring vision.

One thing most people would be surprised to learn about you?

I rode a bike 320 miles (more than 30,000 feet of elevation gain) along the Blue Ridge Mountains from Fancy Gap to Front Royal.

Ambition, political or otherwise?

To take my education, training, and experience and maximize my contribution to the community. To be a man for others.

Favorite part about the PLP so far?

My classmates.

PLP 2017 Profile: Paula Jasinski

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Name:

Paula Jasinski

Birthplace and/or where you grew up:

Virginia's Northern Neck (Warsaw)

Current Digs:

Richmond

Occupation:

Environmental consultant

Favorite part about the job:

explaining how environmental protections are relevant to everyone!

Your first job ever:

Cashier

Favorite Book:

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer. The book is written about the aftermath of 9/11 to one family from 9-year old Oskar Schell's point of view. It's heart wrenching and heart warming at the same time. Even though 9/11 and NYC are the backdrops to the story, it's about so much more and Foer writes it all brilliantly. I've re-read this book at least three times.

Comfort Food:

Roast chicken and vegetables

What’s playing in your car right now?

Business related podcasts

Next journey?

Planning for a trip to Uganda and other parts of Africa. This trip has been on my bucket list for many years

Favorite Virginia destination?

Wherever my children are at the time. They're both in college now and spending time with them at home or at college is my favorite thing in the world.

First political memory?

Sitting on the back seat of a convertible in a parade while campaigning for former state Delegate and Secretary of Natural Resources, W. Tayloe Murphy, Jr. I had the extreme good fortune to grow up with him as a mentor and close family friend. I've never met a kinder or wiser person.

Best advice you ever got?

It's never too late to be who or what you want to be.

If you could have dinner with anyone currently living, whom would it be and why?

Hard question. I'd have to flip a coin between Dr. Sylvia Earle or Neil deGrasse Tyson. I'm huge fans of both of them for what they've done for bringing science into the mainstream. I'd love to have the opportunity to speak with them both about how to restore respect for science in our country and protect the planet for many future generations.

One thing most people would be surprised to learn about you?

I have styrophobia- a deep hatred of the sound of styrofoam or even the thought of it.

Ambition, political or otherwise?

Professionally, we're re-branding our company to broaden our focus. Politically, I am becoming more and more active to support candidates and elected officials I believe in.

Favorite part about the PLP so far?

Getting to know my fellow PLP students, across the political spectrum. They all have so much to offer and I'm in awe of each of them.

 

PLP 2017 Profile: Grant Kidwell

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Name:

Grant Kidwell

Birthplace and/or where you grew up:

I grew up in Vienna, Virginia.

Current Digs:

I've been living in Arlington for the last 3 years.

Occupation:

Senior Policy Analyst at Americans for Prosperity

Favorite part about the job:

Traveling around to state capitols across the country.

Your first job ever:

Paperboy for a local weekly newspaper.

Favorite Book:

Game of Thrones.

Comfort Food:

A huge plate of nachos.

What’s playing in your car right now?

Freakonomics or some other podcast.

Next journey?

Hopefully out west to hike through one of the national parks.

Favorite Virginia destination?

Shenandoah Valley

First political memory?

Stuffing envelopes for a a delegate campaign

Best advice you ever got?

Buy land. God aint making any more of it.

If you could have dinner with anyone currently living, whom would it be and why?

Senator Ben Sasse and ask him for a job in his future Presidential administration.

One thing most people would be surprised to learn about you?

I once spent two weeks camping in the desert in Botswana.

Ambition, political or otherwise?

Be the head of an agency. Energy, Interior, or FERC.

Favorite part about the PLP so far?

The opening weekend in Williamsburg. We had the fife and drum core escort us to dinner.

Sorensen Event at Norfolk's Chrysler Museum

Monday, October 2, 2017

In today's bitter partisan environment, the Sorensen Institute's vision is more important than ever: trust, civility and respect in politics. Join us on Oct. 12 for an evening of drinks, discussion and networking with area political junkies to support the Sorensen Institute.


Across the Aisle: A Political Fundraiser Like No Other!
Thursday, 10/12/17 · 6–8 p.m.
Perry Glass Studio @ the Chrysler Museum of Art
745 Duke Street, Norfolk, VA 23519

This unique event brings together area civic leaders from all political parties and persuasions—elected officials and private citizens—for an evening of drinks, discussion and networking. CNU’s Rachel Bitecofer, Director of the Survey Research Lab at the Wason Center for Public Policy, will answer the age-old political question, “Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?” Plus a live demonstration by the Chrysler Museum's talented glass artists.

The Glass Studio is a smaller venue with a limited capacity, so don't wait to register!

EVENT CO-CHAIRS
Andria McClellan
     (Norfolk City Council)
Chuck McPhillips
     (Kaufman & Canoles)

HONORARY CO-CHAIRS
Sen. Mark Warner
Rep. Bobby Scott
Rep. Scott Taylor
former Rep. Scott Rigell
Secretary Aubrey Layne
Sen. John Cosgrove
Sen. Lynwood Lewis
Sen. Mamie Locke
Sen. Monty Mason
Sen. Tommy Norment
Del. Glenn Davis
Mayor Kenny Alexander
Mayor Will Sessoms


EVENT SPONSORS
Jim Hixon
Chrysler Museum of Art
Cox Communications
Dominion Energy
Kaufman & Canoles
Suzy Kelly
Harry Lester
Andria McClellan
Newport News Shipbuilding
Smithfield Foods
TowneBank
Trident Utility Contracting
Vandeventer Black LLP
Virginia Natural Gas


Sponsorships from $1,000 to $10,000 are still available. Contact Colleen Smith at 434-982-4910 or colleen.smith@virginia.edu to discuss sponsorship opportunities.

PLP 2017 Profile: Jana Braswell

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Name:
Jana Braswell


Birthplace and/or where you grew up:
Richmond Virginia

Current Digs:
Chesterfield, VA

Occupation:
Coordinator for the Center for Behavioral Health and Justice

Favorite part about the job:
Feeling like we, the Center, can make a difference. Responding to the needs of people with behavioral health disorders in the Criminal Justice system is pretty complicated stuff. Creating change of this magnitude really comes down communication, collaboration and coordination - each of which the Center strives to do.

Your first job ever:
Little Caesars Pizza on Forest Hill Avenue. I had to get a work permit because I was only 15. I learned rather fast that I did not want to sling pizza for a living.

Favorite Book:
I have a hard time finishing books so this is a hard one for me. I will say I absolutely loved The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein.

Comfort Food:
Chocolate chip cookies and bagels and lox (not at the same time)

What’s playing in your car right now?
NPR

Next journey?
Our kids are entering Kindergarten this year...

Favorite Virginia destination?
There are so many! Depends on the time of year.

First political memory?
I was asked this question during our first Sorensen weekend and had a hard time thinking back to what that might be. The good news is I have a ton of memories to reference now, and I look forward to more!

Best advice you ever got?
[Redacted]. Can I say that here? If not... "Follow your heart, but don't let your head be too far behind"

If you could have dinner with anyone currently living, whom would it be and why?
There are so many. I think today it would be James Comey.

One thing most people would be surprised to learn about you?
I drove across the country from San Francisco to Richmond, VA when I was 20 years old in a 1973 Ford pick up truck. It was lime green and broke down multiple times. Oh, and we didn't have cell phones in 1993 (at least my friend and I didn't!)

Ambition, political or otherwise?
To continue down the path I am on, wherever that may lead.

Favorite part about the PLP so far?
I realize it is cliche', but the people. The people and the realization that we truly have the best of the best engaged in Virginia politics.

Pages