Local Commentary

A Penny for Your Thoughts: News of Greater Falls Church

Every election seems to be touted as the “most important election” ever! Despite the hyperbole, the elections next Tuesday really are important for Northern Virginia, as some of our largest jurisdictions will experience significant turnover in their governing bodies, because of retirements or primary losses. Since most votes have not been cast or counted yet, there may be some surprises, too.

Every seat in the Virginia General Assembly is on the ballot, as state senators and delegates battle to gain control of the closely divided chambers. Democratic state senators Richard Saslaw, Dave Marsden, and Chap Peterson are running for re-election in their individual districts. If Democrats prevail, Senator Saslaw is expected to become Senate Majority Leader. In the House of Delegates, re-electing Kaye Kory (38th District), Vivian Watts (39th District), Alfonso Lopez (49th District), and Marcus Simon (53rd District) is important to bring Democratic control back to the lower house.

Countywide races are generating a lot of interest. Lee District Supervisor Jeff McKay is running to succeed retiring Board Chairman Sharon Bulova. Jeff’s leadership and grasp of issues — he’s chaired the board’s Transportation Committee, and now heads both the Budget and Legislative Committees — ensures a steady hand in county governance. Sheriff Stacey Kincaid, the first female sheriff in the county’s history, has superb community outreach, and deserves re-election. The Commonwealth’s Attorney race features Democrat Steve Descano, who won a spirited primary against incumbent Ray Morrogh in June, and Jonathan Fahey, who filed as an independent after Morrogh’s defeat, when it was too late to gain an official Republican Party endorsement. Steve’s progressive focus is to create a criminal justice system that works for everyone. You also can vote for three directors of the Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District. Monica Billger, Christopher Koerner, and incumbent Gerald Peters bring thoughtful and solid environmental backgrounds to watershed protections.

Public education is the number one priority in the county, and voters can elect three at-large School Board members, as well as their local district member. Democratically endorsed candidates are Abrar Omeish, Rachna Sizemore Heizer, and incumbent Karen Keys-Gamarra. Newcomer Dr. Ricardy “Rickie” Anderson is running for the Mason District School Board seat being vacated by Sandy Evans, who announced her retirement earlier this year. Rickie will bring both her expertise as an educator and her understanding of the challenges facing young students and their families to the School Board. Also on the ballot is a $360 million School Bond for the school system’s Capital Improvement Program. Be sure to turn your ballot over and vote “yes” for school bonds.

Last, but hopefully not least, I am running for re-election as your Mason District Supervisor. No candidate for the Board can match my leadership and experience of more than two decades, and I treasure the trust placed in me by Mason District voters during the past six elections. I am a workhorse, not a showhorse, and I work every day to make a difference – whether restoring our local streams and the Chesapeake Bay, keeping our county the safest jurisdiction of its size in the nation, working with civic and homeowner associations to solve neighborhood issues, or ensuring that the most vulnerable in our community receive the services they need to succeed. It’s a fulltime job that I love, and I would appreciate your vote.

Happy Halloween, and don’t forget to vote!


  • Penny Gross

    Penny Gross is the Mason District Supervisor in the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. She may be e-mailed at mason@fairfaxcounty.gov