Archive for 2009

A History of the Senior Statesmen of Virginia

Saturday, December 19th, 2009
Gene Ecton Davis

Gene Ecton Davis

On the second Wednesday of each month, the Senior Statesmen of Virginia present outstanding speakers of local and regional interest. In December, they met to reflect on the past and future of their organization.

SSV founding member and past president Gene Ecton Davis spoke at the organization’s annual meeting about the history of the SSV. Following Ms. Davis’ presentation, Senior Statesmen members reflected on how they might better serve their community in the coming year.

icon for podpress Standard Podcast [0:48m]

The meeting took place at the Branchlands Manor House on December 9, 2009. The event was moderated by SSV President Marvin Hilton.

The Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission

Wednesday, November 18th, 2009

Billie Campbell

Billie Campbell

Billie Campbell, chief operating officer for the Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission (TJPDC), spoke at our November 11, 2009 meeting. The TJPDC is one of 21 planning district commissions in Virginia established by the General Assembly under the Virginia Area Development Act in 1969. TJPDC has six member jurisdictions: the City of Charlottesville and the Counties of Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa and Nelson. TJPDC is directed by a 12-member commission, consisting of two representatives appointed by each locality, more than half of whom are local elected officials. Ms. Campbell’s presentation will briefly review the history of the TJPDC since its creation in 1972, explore its working relationships with localities and public agencies, and present its programs and activities.

icon for podpress Standard Podcast [1:17:08m]

As chief operating officer, Ms. Campbell oversees TJPDC’s program operations and is responsible for the timely production of deliverables, preparation of the budget, implementation of policies, internal processes, and monitoring the effectiveness of programs and progress toward agency goals. She leads the Community Development Team at TJPDC and serves as the primary staff for the Charlottesville HOME Consortium. During her ten years at TJPDC, she has also provided staff support for the Jefferson Area Disability Services Board, the Local Workforce Investment Board, the Youth Council and the Jefferson Area Transition Council. She holds a Master of Public Administration degree from George Mason University, a Master of Architecture and Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies from the University of Illinois. Prior to her career in public administration, she practiced for twenty years as a structural engineer and project manager. She maintains her registration as a Professional Engineer.

The November 11, 2009 meeting of the Senior Statesmen of Virginia was held at The Charlottesville Senior Center. The event was moderated by SSV Board member Sue Liberman.

Candidates Forum: Albemarle County Board of Supervisors

Sunday, October 18th, 2009

On October 14th, the Senior Statesmen of Virginia and the Charlottesville Senior Center cosponsored a candidates forum featuring the candidates for the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors: Jack Jouett District: incumbent Dennis Rooker (I); Rio District: incumbent David Slutzky (D), and challenger Rodney Thomas (R); Samuel Miller District: Madison Cummings (D), John Lowry (I), and Duane Snow (R). The candidates made brief statements of their positions on various issues following which the session was opened for questions from the attendees. SSV board member Jim Perkins moderated the event.

icon for podpress Standard Podcast [1:58:07m]

Jack Jouett Magisterial District

Dennis Rooker

Dennis Rooker (Independent) is the incumbent supervisor representing the Jack Juett Magisterial District. Dennis Rooker has lived in Albemarle County for forty years and presently lives in Roslyn Ridge with his wife, Ann. They have two daughters and four grandchildren. Dennis has a B.A. in Economics and a Juris Doctor, both from UVA. He has been a practicing attorney and businessman in this area for 33 years and has owned and operated law, media, real estate and venture capital businesses.

Dennis has served on the Board of Supervisors for 7 years (2 years as chair), four years on the Planning Commission (2 years as chair), the area’s transportation board (MPO) for 7 years, and numerous other boards and committees over the past twenty years including the Planning and Coordination Council for Albemarle County, Albemarle County’s Audi Committee, South Fork Rivanna Reservoir Stewardship Task Force, Transfer of Development Rights Committee, Meadowcreek Parkway Design Advisory Committee, and the Charlottesville-Albemarle Transportation Funding Committee.

Rio Magisterial District

David Slutzky

David Slutzky (Democrat) is the incumbent supervisor representing the Rio Magisterial District. David’s passion for Albemarle County is readily apparent from his significant community involvement. As a member of the Board of Supervisors for the last three and a half years, he has immersed himself in the complex issues facing Albemarle and has applied his expertise on subjects from transportation solutions to spearheading new initiatives to protect the rural areas of the County. David is also the Chairman of the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), serving as such for the past three years. Because of his experience and commitment to finding smart, realistic solutions, he has earned the respect of Albemarle residents from across the political spectrum. His record shows a commitment to doing what is right for the County, not what is politically easiest or most popular.

David has decades of experience in both the public service sector and as the manager of a small business. He and Melissa founded the environmental and economic policy firm, E2Inc., that has grown to employ over forty professionals here in Charlottesville. As a recognized expert on environmental policy issues, David served in the White House as a Senior Policy Advisor, where he led the International Task Force of the President’s Council on Sustainable Development. David deeply believes in environmental sustainability and has incorporated this into his private life: he is a proud owner of an electric truck. Additionally, he is a part-time Urban and Environmental Planning Professor at the University of Virginia. He cherishes his role as an educator in the community and enjoys building relationships with his students.

David received his bachelors’ degree from the University of Chicago and his environmental law degree from the Chicago-Kent College of Law. Then he and his wife Melissa were ready to raise their family, they made their home in Albemarle, where they have lived for the past few decades. David and Melissa have three grown children: Briana, Rebecca, and Isaac. David also recently became a grandfather to an adorable little baby boy-Briana and her husband’s son, Phinneas.

Rodney Thomas

Rodney Thomas (Republican) is a candidate for supervisor for the Rio Magisterial District. A lifelong resident of Albemarle County, Rodney is well aware of the issues facing the Rio community. Rodney began working locally for The Daily Progress. When the Vietnam conflict escalated he was drafted into the United States Army and served one tour before being honorably discharged. Upon his return home Rodney continued his career in the print industry and by 1979 Rodney was able to purchase Charlottesville Press, Inc., a family owned print shop which he still operates today.

As a small business owner in Albemarle County for 30 years, Rodney understands the issues facing the local business community. Yet he is also aware of the important role local organizations play. Serving as an active board member of the Boys and Girls Club, YMCA, Crime Stoppers, and Charlottesville Host Lion’s Club, Rodney has worked to improve the quality of life in Albemarle. Rodney brought this same mission of service to the Albemarle County Planning Commission in 1998, where he served the Rio District until 2006.

Rodney and his wife Nancy moved to Carrsbrook 36 years ago and still live there today. Their two children, Rod and Ashley, now have families of their own and the eight grandchildren enjoy spending time with Rodney and Nancy whenever they can.

Samuel Miller Magisterial District

Madison Cummings

Madison Cummings (Democrat) is a candidate for supervisor for the Samuel Miller Magisterial District. Madison Cummings has lived in Central Virginia for the last 39 years, 31 of those years in North Garden. He served as a staff and senior pharmacist at UVA Hospital from 1970 until he retired in 2004. His wife Pat taught in Albemarle County schools for 37 years. All three of their children were educated in Albemarle County schools and two of their children continue to live in Albemarle County.

Madison has served Albemarle County in many capacities during those years. Early on when his children were young, Madison was involved in building playgrounds at Red Hill Elementary, coaching soccer and baseball, and serving as president of Red Hill PTO (1988-89) and as a member of the Blue Ribbon Commission for Albemarle County Education in the 21st Century (1990-91). In 1994, he was appointed by Sally Thomas to the Albemarle County School Board and was elected for a second term in 1997. He has been a member of Albemarle County School’s Health Advisory Committee for 4 years.

From 2002 to 2008 Madison was a member of the Charlotttesville Albemarle Commission on Children and Families. He has been a member of the Cove Garden Ruritan for 25 years; has served on the African-American Teaching Fellows Board and participates in the Community University Research and Service Partnership.

Madison has been a member of the Democratic Party Steering Committee as Chair for the Samuel Miller District the last 5 years. He continues to advocate for bipartisan cooperation as when he served on the Albemarle County School Board.

John Lowry

John Lowry (Independent) is a candidate for supervisor for the Samuel Miller Magisterial District. John moved to the area in 1970. He graduated from the College of William & Mary in 1969. John met his wife, Nancy Feil, of Charlottesville at W&M. They have three children and four grandchildren.

Currently retired, his last employment was with Old Dominion Capital Management as an Investment Counselor. Prior to that he worked for Wachovia Securities and its predecessors from 1976- 2007. He was among those who opened the office of Wheat First Securities on the downtown Mall in May1976. In the summer of 1976 he played in the 14th Virginia Fife and Drum Corps for the Queen of England and the President of the U S at Monticello. He taught investments at Piedmont Virginia Community College for ten years. John co-founded the adult SOCA League and founded the Stock and Board club for fellow professionals. While serving on the joint Airport Board the new terminal was built. He has been chair of the Board of the Oratorio Society and the Charlottesville & University Symphony. He is the current chair of the Albemarle Economic Development Authority. He is a recent graduate of the Sorenson Institute for political candidates.

Duane Snow

Duane Snow (Republican) is a candidate for supervisor for the Samuel Miller Magisterial District. Duane was born and raised in Charlottesville and has been married to Rena Snow for 42 years. They have five children, all of whom attended Albemarle County Schools. He and Rena are the proud grandparents of 12 grandchildren.

Duane was the CEO and president of Snow’s Garden Center for 35 years. He was a former instructor at Piedmont Virginia Community College in Gardening and Landscaping classes.

He served on the Albemarle County Architectural Review Board and 10 years with the Virginia State Agricultural Council. Duane is the past president of the Charlottesville Rotary Club and is a Paul Harris Fellow.

Duane hosted for 35 years the longest running radio gardening show in the nation. He previously served on the board of the American Heart Association and the Boy Scouts of America Committee. He is a committed church and community leader.

A View from the Hill: Social Security and Medicare, Where from Here?

Saturday, September 12th, 2009

Laura Feldman

Laura Feldman

Laura Feldman could be termed a “Washington Insider.” As a long-term organizer for the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, the leading nonpartisan advocacy group in the country for Social Security and Medicare, she has expert knowledge on the issue of health care reform, how it will impact seniors, social security and Medicare and what is really happening on Capitol Hill right now.

icon for podpress Standard Podcast [1:15m]: Hide Player | Play in Popup | Download

Ms. Feldman brings her skills as a teacher to educating senior groups and activists across the country. She is a native Washingtonian where politics is a local sport. Demystifying politics, personalizing it and making it fun is one of her goals.

She has been a grassroots organizer for the National Committee to Preserve Social Security & Medicare for the past 18 years. The National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare is a nonpartisan advocacy organization supported by membership. Prior to coming to the National Committee, she organized national programming for the National Science Foundation under a special education grant, which propelled her out of the classroom and into the public arena.

She brings her observations and perspective from “inside the beltway” on the politics of the new 111th Congress and the issues involving Social Security, Medicare and Aging.

Ms. Feldman graduated from American University. She is the past president of the Southern Gerontological Society, on the Board of Trustees for the Florida Silver Haired Legislature, was the first policy chair for GROWS, The (Grassroots Organization For The Well Being of Seniors) was a board member of the Maryland Gerontological Association, the Virginia Council on Aging and NANASP (the National Association of Nutrition and Service Providers.) She was appointed to the first Seniors Cabinet of the Montgomery County Council of Maryland and is a long-time member and moderator for the United Seniors of Maryland. She is the proud grandmother of eight-year-old twins.

Ms. Feldman spoke at the Wednesday September 9, 2009 meeting of the The Senior Statesmen of Virginia held at The Charlottesville Senior Center. Following the presentation questions were taken from the audience. The program was moderated by SSV Secretary Bill Davis.

Virginia House of Delegates Candidates Showcase

Friday, August 28th, 2009

On Wednesday August 12, 2009, The Senior Statesmen of Virginia and The Charlottesville Senior Center, Inc., co-sponsored a CANDIDATES SHOWCASE featuring the candidates for the House of Delegates seats serving the Charlottesville-Albemarle area: Rob Bell, Steve Landes, Greg Marrow, Cynthia Neff, Brandon Smith and David Toscano. The candidates made brief statements on their positions on various issues after which the session was opened for questions from the attendees. Today’s program was moderated by SSV board member Sue Liberman.

icon for podpress Standard Podcast [1:56:04m]: Hide Player | Play in Popup | Download

25th House District: Counties of Albemarle (part), Augusta (part), Rockingham (part) and the City of Waynesboro

Steve Landes

Steve Landes

Steve Landes (Republican) is the incumbent delegate representing the 25th House District. Steve is serving his seventh term in the House. He is a member of the House Education Committee; and Appropriations, Rules, and Privileges and Elections Committees, and is vice chairman of the House Education Committee. He is the first non-attorney to serve as chairman and as a member of the Virginia Code Commission. Steve is also past president of the Weyers Cave Ruritan Club. He serves on the Board of Trustees of the Center for Rural Virginia and is vice chairman. He also serves on the Board of Trustees of the Frontier Culture Museum of Virginia. Steve is a member of both the American Legislative Exchange Council and the National Conference of State Legislators’ Education Committees.

From 1988 to 1992 he served as legislative assistant to his predecessor, former Delegate A.R. “Pete” Giesen, Jr., and from 1993 to 1995 served as Congressman Bob Goodlatte’s district director and district representative. Steve is the community relations coordinator for DuPont Community Credit Union, which is headquartered in Waynesboro,Virginia. He served as executive director of NewBiz Virginia, the Shenandoah Valley’s small business incubator, for five years. Steve was a life insurance agent and registered representative with Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company. Steve also worked at Davis & Davis Marketing, Inc.-a Staunton based marketing and advertising firm as a media buyer and then as an account executive.

Steve is a graduate of Buffalo Gap High School in Augusta County, and he received a Bachelor of Science degree from Virginia Commonwealth University. He and his wife Angela, who is an assistant commonwealth’s attorney for Augusta County, live in Weyers Cave with their son Roth. Steve and Angela are both members and elders of Mt. Horeb Presbyterian Church.

Greg Marrow

Greg Marrow

Greg Marrow (Democrat) is a candidate for delegate for the 25th House District. Greg is a local optometrist who practices with his wife in Harrisonburg. He graduated from the University of New England, top in his class, with a bachelor’s degree in Marine Biology before earning a doctorate of optometry at the Southern College of Optometry in Memphis, TN. Greg is also a decorated US Navy veteran with over a decade of service on ships, in the Mediterranean Sea, and at the end of his military career, as the department head of the Optometry Clinic at the Naval Hospital at Cherry Point Marine Corps Air Station. Here he was awarded the prestigious Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal for fiscal responsibility in stream lining efficiency in the clinic, support of troop readiness, and saving taxpayers tens of thousands of dollars each year. Greg has been involved in politics for several decades and has worked for candidates on both sides of the aisle. He has worked tirelessly to improve the health and prosperity of his community and in 2006 was awarded a civilian medal of merit by the Valley Voice Reading Service for outstanding support and contribution to Virginia’s blind and visually impaired. In addition to this effort, Greg and his wife Christi have donated thousands of dollars to local libraries, needy charities, churches and schools. Greg and Christi were drawn to the Valley years ago and have been in love with it ever since, learning very quickly that this is a great place to raise a family. In addition to managing a successful business, Greg and Christi are raising two wonderfully bright children, Cami, age 4, and Cade, age 2. In his spare time Greg enjoys hiking the Appalachian Trail, and raising alpacas and chickens on his small farm, and riding his Harley.

57th House District: County of Albemarle (part), and the City of Charlottesville

David Toscano

David Toscano

David Toscano (Democrat) is the incumbent delegate representing the 57th House District. David Toscano was elected to his first term in the Virginia House of Delegates in November 2005. David was born in Syracuse, New York in 1950, the first of five children. He was educated in the public schools, received a bachelor’s degree from Colgate University in 1972, a Ph.D. from Boston College in 1979, and a law degree from the University of Virginia in 1986. He has taught at various colleges and universities, including Boston College, the University of Maryland (European Division), Piedmont Virginia Community College, the University of Virginia, and James Madison University. He is an attorney with Buck, Toscano & Tereskerz, Ltd., specializing in family law and real estate. David served on the Charlottesville City Council from 1990 to 2002 and as mayor from 1994 to 1996.

David is a resident of the City of Charlottesville, where he lives with his wife of 30 years, Nancy A. Tramontin, and their son, Matthew.

David serves on the Courts of Justice, Transportation, and Science and Technology Committees in the House of Delegates. He is also a member of the Disability Commission, the Joint Commission to Study Math, Science and Technology Education in the Commonwealth, and the Joint Subcommittee to Study Land Use Tools in the Commonwealth. He is also a member of the United Way Board and the Chamber of Commerce.

Robert Brandon Smith III

Robert Brandon Smith III

Robert Brandon Smith III (Independent) is a candidate for delegate for the 57th House District. Brandon lists the following qualifications and experience:

o A Virginian (Alexandrian) o Episcopalian o Carpenter and Drywall Mechanic o United States Marine Corps brat o Graduate of Princess Anne High School o Tested first in Senior Class in 1965 in knowledge of Current Events and World Affairs (Time Magazine- Certificate of Excellence) o Attended Randolph-Macon College-studied history; played lacrosse o 2nd twenty-five years in Richmond o Resided in Charlottesville and Nelson County since 1994 o Long time community, pro-choice, environmental, historic preservation, etc. citizen activist/volunteer o Founding Member (1975) Cornucopia Natural Foods Co-op Richmond. o Convened Richmond Greens in 1989 o Led same Greens in successful fight against proposed medical waste incinerator, for New York medical waste o Actions in Charlottesville include: for bike lanes, for Living Wages, on Population and Ethics Committees of the Thomas Jefferson Planning District Sustainability Council.o Bicycle, no car o Follow the Iroquois, in public decisions account for impact on the seventh generation. “My country? Sir, my country is Virginia!” John Randolph of Roanoke

58th House District: Counties of Albemarle (part), Fluvanna (part), Greene, and Orange (part)

Rob Bell

Rob Bell

Rob Bell (Republican) is the incumbent delegate representing the 58th House District. An honors graduate of the University of Virginia and the University of Virginia Law School, Rob Bell served as a state prosecutor for five years. He prosecuted over 2,400 cases, working with the police and crime victims to bring criminals to justice.

Representing the 58th House District Rob has written laws that crack down on drunk driving. He was named the 2005 Outstanding Legislator by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)-Virginia. He is also interested in school safety. In recent years, he has written laws to ban criminal sex offenders from school property during school hours and to require additional background checks on school personnel. In 2008, Rob helped overhaul Virginia’s mental health laws in light of the tragedy at Virginia Tech.

An Eagle Scout, Rob was an active volunteer with the Boy Scouts and with the public schools prior to his election in 2001. Rob’s wife, Jessica, is a schoolteacher. She is currently staying home to raise their children, Robbie and Evelyn. The Bells live in Albemarle County and are members of Aldersgate United Methodist Church.

Cynthia Neff

Cynthia Neff

Cynthia Neff (Democrat) is running for delegate to the General Assembly from the 58th District. After a long career in business she has decided to turn her time and talents to public service and an opportunity to bring a common sense, practical business approach to state government.

Cynthia grew up in a military family, moving often throughout her childhood. After spending her high school years in Oklahoma, she left home at 17. While attending college and working full time at the Post Office, in doctor’s offices and convalescent hospitals, she began her interest in public service, and served with the Flying Samaritans to provide medical care for those who could not afford it. After school, Cynthia opened a gift store with a friend and served on a number of merchant and small business associations, even testifying to members of the legislature on the needs of small business. She then went to work at IBM, starting in sales and operations. Throughout the next 25 years, she worked in a number of managerial and executive capacities for the company. From sales, to marketing, manufacturing, public policy, personal privacy, and human resources, she saw how most every aspect of the company’s decisions affected the lives of the people working there. She retired from the executive ranks at IBM.

Cynthia left the business world in 2006 and looked for the ideal spot to call home. As the sole caretaker of an elderly parent, she looked for an area close to her family; one with excellent health care resources; and one with the cultural events of a college town with the rural setting and sense of community. Albemarle County was the natural choice. Cynthia puts all of her experience to work as the chair of the AIDS/HIV Services Group Board of Directors, the Advisory Council of the Legal Aid Justice Center, as Court Appointed Special Advocate working with abused and endangered children and other volunteer organizations focused on helping the most vulnerable members of the community.

Health Insurance: The Problem, The Solution

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009
Donna Goings,  Robert Graham and David Shreve

Donna Goings, Robert Graham and David Shreve

Panelists Donna GoingsRobert Graham and David Shreve examined the problems with today’s health care system, their origins and how they would be addressed by a proposed national health insurance program. The panel included the perspectives of a consumer/patient, a medical professional and an economist. They spoke at the June 10, 2009 meeting of the Senior Statemen of Virginia held at the Charlottesville Senior Center.

Donna Goings is a local real estate agent with 23 years of experience, a member of the National Association of Realtors, a Certified Residential Specialist (CRS), and a graduate of the Realtor’s Institute (GRI). Donna served four years on the Board of the Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors including two years as treasurer. Donna received her Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Wake Forest University in 1968. A former teacher of math in the Charlottesville Public School System Donna has served as president of the Charlottesville Education Association and chairperson of the Charlottesville Political Action Committee for Education. Donna has also been active in her community by serving on the Charlottesville Rail Board, on the CHART citizens’ advisory committee on transportation and as an organizer of her Westwood Road area Neighborhood Watch. Donna’s current concern is health care reform.

Robert Graham has, for 10 years, served as director of patient billing for the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Virginia. During this time, Robert has served on a number of committees at the University of Virginia Health Center dealing with billing issues for both physician and hospital charges. Robert received his Bachelor of Music Degree from Indiana University in 1980 and his Masters Degree from Indiana in 1981. As a trombonist, Robert has performed with the Baton Rouge Symphony, Richmond Symphony, West Virginia Symphony, Lynchburg Symphony and Charlottesville Symphony orchestras. Robert was the adjunct instructor of trombone at the University of Virginia from 1985 through 2001. He has also performed professionally with the Broadway touring production of Annie and with the Cab Calloway orchestra.

David Shreve is a former professor of economic history at the University of Virginia, where he held a joint appointment at the Miller Center of Public Affairs and the Department of History. He was a candidate for the United States Congress in 2008. A specialist in national, state, and local economic policy and 20th century U.S. political history, David also served as a budget analyst for the Louisiana legislature, where he was the legislative analyst responsible for the state Medicaid program, its indigent care hospital system, and all of the Bayou State’s health care departments and agencies. In that capacity, he was also a member of the governor’s health care estimating conference and the legislative representative to the Kellogg-Robert Wood Johnson task force on public health reform. He is the vice president of Advocates for a Sustainable Albemarle Population, a member of the Virginia Organizing Project Tax Reform Committee, the editor and associate editor of seven volumes in W.W. Norton’s Presidential Recordings series, and the author of numerous essays and articles on American political economy and of the forthcoming book, American Promise: Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, and the Forging of the Modern Economy.

Program Summary

Three panelists addressed the issue: “Health Insurance: the Problem, the Solution.” The primary debate going on in Washington today is the formation of a national health insurance program that has everyone in and no one out. In the early decades of the 20thcentury, three payment plans sere formed. First was le Cross, a nonprofit. During WW II, when wages were frozen, employers got into the act by providing company paid insurance. Also during this period, Henry J. Kaiser developed the Health Maintenance Organization. Then came Medicare for the elderly, and in the 90’s came Medicare Part D, a drug plan using private insurance companies under government regulation.

Panelist Donna Goings described her experience as a consumer/patient. For 24 years she had paid her own health care premiums with a high deductible. When a skin blemish was diagnosed as cancer, she underwent outpatient surgery, but the cost came to $10,000. She also spoke of a friend who has worked for many years with a company that provides employee health care, but now she is on the verge of reaching the $1 million lifetime benefit limit. Ms. Goings has come to the conclusion that a single payer approach is the solution.

Panelist Robert Graham, a medical professional, provided extensive information comparing Medicare to six major private insurance plans. In every case, the Medicare allowances beat all of the private plans and also the patient copays were less than all of the private plans, and none of the commercial insurances came close to the cost control achieved by Medicare.

Panelist David Shreve, an economist, addressed the question of how to pay for a single payer system. He suggested a small transaction tax on all stock market sales; a roll back of 2003 tax cuts; a 1.45 percent tax on income; and a gain from economic efficiencies.

The 2009 General Assembly Session (May 2009 Meeting)

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

Virginia House of Delegates members Rob Bell and David Toscano provided their perspectives on the issues that came before the 2009 legislature at the May 13, 2009 meeting of the Senior Statesmen of Virginia held at the Charlottesville Senior Center.

An honors graduate of the University of Virginia and the University of Virginia Law School, Rob Bell served as a state prosecutor for five years. He prosecuted over 2,400 cases, working with the police and crime victims to bring criminals to justice.

Representing the 58th House District (County of Greene and parts of Albemarle, Fluvanna, and Orange Counties), Rob has written laws that crack down on drunk driving. He was named the 2005 Outstanding Legislator by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)-Virginia. He is also interested in school safety. In recent years, he has written laws to ban criminal sex offenders from school property during school hours and to require additional background checks on school personnel. In 2008, Rob helped overhaul Virginia’s mental health laws in light of the tragedy at Virginia Tech.

An Eagle Scout, Rob was an active volunteer with the Boy Scouts and with the public schools prior to his election in 2001. Rob’s wife, Jessica, is a schoolteacher. She is currently staying home to raise their children, Robbie and Evelyn. The Bells live in Albemarle County and are members of Aldersgate United Methodist Church

David Toscano was elected to his first term in the Virginia House of Delegates in November 2005 representing the 57th House District (City of Charlottesville and part of Albemarle County). David was born in Syracuse, New York in 1950, the first of five children. He was educated in the public schools, received a bachelor’s degree from Colgate University in 1972, a Ph.D. from Boston College in 1979, and a law degree from the University of Virginia in 1986. He has taught at various colleges and universities, including Boston College, the University of Maryland (European Division), Piedmont Virginia Community College, the University of Virginia, and James Madison University.   He is an attorney with Buck, Toscano & Tereskerz, Ltd., specializing in family law and real estate.

David served on the Charlottesville City Council from 1990 to 2002 and as Mayor from 1994 to 1996.

David is a resident of the City of Charlottesville, where he lives with his wife of 30 years, Nancy A. Tramontin, and their son, Matthew.

David serves on the Courts of Justice, Transportation, and Science and Technology Committees in the House of Delegates. He is also a member of the Disability Commission, the Joint Commission to Study Math, Science and Technology Education in the Commonwealth, and the Joint Subcommittee to Study Land Use Tools in the Commonwealth.  He is also a member of the United Way Board and the Chamber of Commerce.

The program was moderated by SSV board member Jim Perkins. Following the presentation questions were taken from the audience.

Program Summary

Delegates Rob Belland David Toscano provided their perspectives on the issues that came before the 2009 legislature. Delegate Bellsaid that the session was dominated by the budget in response to the significant reduction in state revenues caused by the decline in consumer spending and other economic factors. He also cited two areas of legislation he sponsored: reform of practices in assisted living facilities; and identity theft. In demonstrating the breadth of legislation considered, Delegate Toscano pointed to a proposed bill that would have allowed “wind energy drying devices,” (or more commonly referred to as “clothes lines”) even if local homeowners associations wished to prohibit them. On a more serious note he discussed the budget cuts proposed by the governor for education and sheriffs’ departments.

Questions raised by members of the audience covered a wide range of issues including: the revenue sharing agreement between Albemarle and Charlottesville; the stimulus package provision that would extend unemployment benefits from the current 29 weeks to 59 weeks; offshore oil drilling; legislation affecting senior citizens; how the federal stimulus package will help Virginia; the use of fossil fuels; the Tobacco Settlement Trust Fund; and the use of new technology to expand the availability of energy.

The Older Dominion Partnership: How Virginia Is Preparing to Ride the Age Wave

Wednesday, April 8th, 2009
John Martin

John Martin

John W. Martin, CEO of the Southeastern Institute of Research, spoke at the April 8, 2009 meeting of the Senior Statesmen of Virginia on the Older Dominion Partnership (ODP), an initiative by business, government, foundations and non-profits to help Virginia prepare for the coming boomer age wave.

The ODP is a public/private initiative created to raise awareness and advance preparation efforts across the Commonwealth of Virginia for the coming “age wave” of older adults – when aging Boomers double the population of citizens ages 65 and older as there are today. Through John’s vision, Virginia’s ODP has ushered in a new model in age wave planning where leaders in academic, nonprofit, state government, philanthropic communities, and business all join together to plan for their community’s shared destiny.

The ODP conducted strategic research among residents and business leaders to help create a planning roadmap for the ODP. Subsequently, six ODP workgroups were established: community readiness, civic engagement, aging services communications support, healthcare access and long-term care, workforce readiness, and a shared statewide research database work group that supports all of the ODP work groups and offers a matrix of age wave preparedness performance indicators.

In addition to co-founding the Boomer Project, the nation’s authority on marketing to today’s Boomer consumer, John Martin is president and CEO of SIR Research, a 44-year-old marketing research firm that has conducted over 13,000 studies for organizations like Media General, AARP, Liberty Mutual, Lincoln Financial, American Chemical Society, the Public Relations Society of America, Johnson & Johnson, and the American SPCA.

John speaks to audiences across the country about age wave preparation, as well as generational issues and understanding today’s Boomers. He also co-authored the award-winning business book, Boomer Consumer, published in 2007.

Over the last five years, the Boomer Project has established itself as the leading authority on generational marketing. Boomer Project findings have been shared on NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, CBS Sunday Morning, CNBC, MSNBC, NPR’s “Marketplace” and recent cover stories about older Boomers by BusinessWeek and Newsweek, as well as articles in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times. Hundreds of organizations from financial services firms, healthcare associations, consumer products companies, retailers, and governmental agencies have hired the Boomer Project to speak at conferences, events, and training sessions.

Following the presentation questions were taken from the audience. Today’s program was moderated by SSV Secretary Bill Davis.

Program Summary

John W. Martin, CEO of the Southeastern Institute of Research, spoke on the Older Dominion Partnership (ODP), an initiative by business, government, foundations and non-profits to help Virginia prepare for the coming boomer age wave (www.olderdominion.org).

Because of the baby boomers, the population in Virginia of 65 and over will increase from 11 percent to 19 percent in ten years. The age wave will impact in five ways: •chronic diseases (e.g., heart disease, arthritis, stroke) will increase by 40 to 50 percent along with multiple severe diseases; •shortage of geriatric physicians and nurses (22,000 more nurses will be needed in 10 years); •enormous shortage of family care-giver workers (nine out of 10 boomers want to remain in their homes); •demands on business, transportation, housing–all must become more age-friendly; •a community’s overall attractiveness and competitiveness may be at stake to attract boomers.

Goals of the Older Dominion Partnership: •Build awareness of the coming age wave; •Broaden pro-aging stake holder groups; •Help facilitate the creation and advancement of community-driven strategies; •Support members through strategic coordination and possible alignment of funding sources; •Help formulate a comprehensive long-term strategic strategy for the Commonwealth; •Document and report on the progress in preparing for the age wave. In sum, “Make things happen sooner rather than later. Don’t play catch-up in 20 years, but rather predict the future by influencing it by taking it in the direction we want it to go in as residents of the Commonwealth.”

The Changing Face of Virginia Politics

Wednesday, March 11th, 2009

Bob GibsonBob Gibson, is executive director of the Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership at the University of Virginia. He is a 1972 graduate of the University of Virginia with a B.A. in government and foreign affairs. After serving as news director of WCHV radio, he joined The Daily Progress in August 1976 and has held a number of positions with the newspaper. He began his career covering police and local court hearings and has covered state and local politics and government. He was named city editor in 1982 and later special projects editor in 1992 when he wrote a series about racial disparities and justice in local courts.

In addition to his newspaper work, Bob hosted a weekly political call-in show on WINA radio in Charlottesville for seven years. He has also hosted a public radio talk show since 2001 on WVTF-FM in Roanoke and Charlottesville. He has been a regular contributor and guest on public radio station WAMU’s Virginia Politics Hour in Washington.

Bob is the winner of several Virginia Press Association awards, the 1993 Virginia Bar Association Award in the Field of Law and Justice and the 1993 Southern Journalism Award for investigative reporting.

Mr. Gibson spoke at a Senior Statesmen of Virginia meeting on March 11, 2009. Following his presentation questions were taken from the audience. Today’s program was moderated by SSV President Marvin Hilton.

Martha Jefferson Hospital: The Old and the New

Monday, February 16th, 2009

James E. Haden, president and chief executive officer of Martha Jefferson Health Services, was the featured speaker at the February 11, 2009 meeting of the Senior Statesmen of Virginia.

James E. Haden was named president and CEO of Martha Jefferson Health Services in 1993. Mr Haden received his master’s degree in Public Health/Health Services Management from UCLA in 1971. He completed his administrative residency at Scripps Hospital in LaJolla, California, and received the 1988 Alumni of the Year Award from the UCLA Health Services Management Alumni Association. Mr. Haden served as president and CEO of Queen of the Valley Health Services in West Covina, California, from 1986 – 1993. Prior to that, he served as chief operating officer of Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian in Newport Beach, California, from 1978 to 1986. Mr Haden served as associate administrator at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena, California, from 1976 – 1978. In 1992, Mr. Haden was chairperson of the California Association of Catholic Hospitals and was a member of the Hospital Council of Southern California from 1988 – 1993.

Mr. Haden served as a board member on the Federal Reserve Board of Richmond from 1998 – 2003, serving on its Executive Committee from 2002 – 2003. He is a former board member of the Charlottesville United Way, the Piedmont Virginia Community College Foundation and Charlottesville Chamber of Commerce.

Mr. Haden served as a preceptor at the UCLA Health Services Management Program from 1981 – 1987 and currently serves as a preceptor for VCU’s Masters Program in Health Care Administration. In 2003 Mr. Haden was the recipient of the American Heart Association, Charlottesville Chapter, Billy Gitchell Award. In 2006 he was the recipient of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Blue Ridge Chapter Silver Hope Award. Mr. Haden is the 2008 recipient of the Beta Kappa Chapter, Sigma Theta Tau, UVa School of Nursing Community Service Award. Mr. Haden is married to Sue Haden. They have three children.