We are less than a week away from the beginning of Special Session. On April 4, legislators will convene again in Richmond to finalize the state budget and the outstanding legislation that remains from the 2022 Session of the General Assembly. I have information to share about community events, COVID boosters, the celebration of Ramadan, and more. Thank you for taking the time to read our newsletter and staying informed about the current happenings around Virginia Senate District 10.
Recap: Higher Education Virtual Town Hall
On Tuesday evening, I hosted a town hall centered on higher education. I was joined by special guests: Dr. Ted Raspiller, President of John Tyler Community College (JTCC), and Peter Blake, Director of the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV). We discussed workforce development opportunities such as those created through the Innovative Internship Program, community college affordability with programs like G3, and much more. Both Director Blake and President Raspiller have been central to the work of higher education in the Commonwealth, and hearing their perspectives was invaluable. The recording of the town hall is available here.
Virginia Interfaith Power and Light Luncheon
This past Saturday, I was honored to speak at a Virginia Interfaith Power and Light Luncheon about the need to address critical issues of environmental justice, climate action, and responsible stewardship of our resources. It was a pleasure to join co-directors Reverend Dr. Faith Harris, Kendyl Crawley Crawford, and Aliya Farooq in highlighting the incredible work that VAIPL does in promoting a sustainable future for the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Visiting Cosby High School
On Wednesday, I spoke to students in the Cosby High School Government Club. The students had thoughtful questions regarding public education funding, the climate crisis, casino referendums and gambling, and diversity within government agencies. Their interest in state government and the issues facing us these days demonstrated a remarkable engagement in current affairs and a strong desire to identify solutions. As these students prepare for the next steps in their lives, it’s important that we in the General Assembly focus on legislative efforts that strengthen educational opportunities and safe, healthy communities.
The Great Virginia Greenup
This Saturday, Keep Virginia Beautiful is hosting the first event in their annual Great Virginia Cleanup program. Join volunteers—and the mascot of the Richmond Flying Squirrels, Nutzy—at the Diamond on April 2 from 10 AM to 2 PM to help pick up litter around the complex. Cleaning supplies will be provided on-site, and all participants will receive an appreciation gift for their time and effort. Registration for the event is available here.
Friday evening marks the beginning of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, the month of fasting, charity, volunteerism, and fellowship. As Muslims fast this month (refraining from both food and drink from sunrise to sunset), the focus will be on extending generosity to family, friends, and the broader community. For all those observing Ramadan across the Commonwealth: Ramadan Mubarak!
Virginia Humanities Public Humanities Fellowship Opportunity
Virginia Humanities is offering its annual Virginia Humanities Public Humanities Fellowship. This fellowship provides an opportunity for writers, independent scholars, community historians, and college and university faculty members to develop their research and writing, share stories, and create cultural expressions that are relevant to Virginia’s diverse communities. Additional information and the application form are located here. Applications are due on June 1.
The Virginia Asian American and Pacific Islander Caucus (VAAPIC) officially launched the caucus website this week. The site provides information about the Caucus, its policy agenda, the latest news and updates from members, and more. Additionally, the Caucus details are available on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
University of Richmond Law School Symposium on Environmental Justice
The University of Richmond School of Law’s Public Interest Law Review is hosting a virtual symposium on environmental justice this Spring, and I am honored to serve as the keynote speaker. The symposium will examine the intersection of public policy, urban development, and the climate crisis, with a focus on marginalized communities.
The symposium will take place on Friday, April 1, 2022, from 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM, and admission is free. Registration for the symposium is available here.
Connecting With My Office
My staff continue to hold meetings with constituents via Zoom or by phone. You can sign up for a meeting with either of my staff members with our easy scheduling app: