Virginia Delegate Kaye Kory today announced that she will not seek election to another term, clearing the path for Del. Marcus Simon in the 38th District, which by way of redistricting last year will soon have both Simon and Kory in the same district that includes the City of Falls Church. Kory will serve out her term through the end of the year.
Her decision removes doubts about the upcoming Democratic primary in June, in which now only Simon is likely to run.
Del. Kory issued the following statement today:
“Serving the people of Fairfax County, first on the School Board and then in the House of Delegates, has been the honor of my life. My first priority was always to take incredible care of my constituents, and I pride myself on listening to every opinion of the people I represent.
“In Richmond, I worked to build strong coalitions of advocates and legislators to speak with a united voice on issues that included women’s health care and animal rights. It is impossible to point to one thing of which I am most proud, but I will never forget our work across party lines to rescue the Envigo beagles. I can also retire knowing that thanks to legislation I introduced, animals in Virginia will not be subjected to the testing of cosmetic products. Education and the environment have also been major themes in my legislation and I am proud of the successes – some which took years to accomplish. I thank the many hardworking citizens and professional groups who have honored me with awards over my tenure.
“For the past eight years during the legislative session in Richmond, I have hosted an art show, Art-Ability, to highlight the work of artists with developmental disabilities. Not only has this been personally rewarding, but the public show encouraged artists who never before had a platform for their work. I have organized a food drive for FEEDMORE as well and received thousands of dollars and hundreds of pounds of food from my generous colleagues.
“We all have much to give to this world, and it was a difficult decision for me to recognize that it is time to let others take the lead. My husband, Ross, who has been the best partner and my biggest fan, is facing some health challenges to which I want to devote my full attention. I am grateful to him and to my children for making our home a team environment that empowered me to pursue public office, and now I want to be there for them.
“Finally, I want to stress the importance of women helping women, which drove me to found the Women’s Health Care Caucus ten years ago. Much of my legislative work has focused on women’s issues, including my law to ensure that incarcerated women will have free access to menstrual supplies. We need more women in office, and more women to support women running for office.
In 2009, I won my primary by a thin margin, and I will never forget that Del. Vivian Watts came out and campaigned for me. She is the hardest-working legislator in the House of Delegates, and I am fortunate that the vast majority of my current district’s constituents will soon be represented by Del. Watts in District 14.
“I wish all of my colleagues success as they continue to fight for our democratic values, and I hope to find other ways to contribute to the cause this November and beyond.”
Reacting to Del. Kory’s announcement, fellow Democrat Del. Simon issued a statement this morning as follows:
“On behalf of the people of Falls Church, Delegate Marcus Simon would like to express his sincere gratitude and appreciation to Delegate Kaye Kory for her years of dedicated service to the Commonwealth of Virginia.
“Delegate Kory’s tireless efforts as a delegate have made a tremendous impact on the community, and she will be greatly missed. Her commitment to women’s healthcare access, education, animal rights, and the environment have left a lasting impression, and we are all grateful for her unwavering dedication.
“As a respected leader in the Virginia House of Delegates, Delegate Kory has been a champion for her constituents, advocating for their concerns and working tirelessly to improve their quality of life. Her passion for advocacy and her willingness to listen to the concerns of her constituents have inspired others to get more involved in local politics and to be more engaged in shaping the future of our state.
“While we are sad to see her retire, we know that her legacy will continue to inspire others for years to come. We wish her all the best in her future endeavors and thank her for her service to Virginia.”