Even though Stan L. Reid is a native of sunny California, he does not mind rainy days; actually, he kind of enjoys them.
Those are the days he meets the most people as he goes from door-to-door in Springfield's many neighborhoods, explaining why he should be elected to take Supervisor Elaine McConnell's (R-Springfield) seat on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.
"I'm doing the campaign the way I want the office to be, which is accessible and approachable," said Reid as to why he has been campaigning door-to-door since December. To prove this point, he even includes his personal cell phone number on the flyer he leaves at the house of every registered voter in Springfield.
Reid said he would not be embarking on such a strenuous campaign if it were not for the combination of his devotion and genuine concern for the area that he has called home for many years.
"I love Fairfax County, and I love living here, but I think I can make Fairfax County even better than it already is," said Reid.
One of Reid's greatest concerns is sprawl and overdevelopment, which he feels are damaging both the aesthetic of Fairfax County and the air quality.
"We're seeing more and more asthma cases … we need someone who will really step up to the plate and do something about that," he said.
Reid also claims that the air quality is being damaged by increasingly heavy traffic. He would combat this by lobbying to have the Metro line extended and having Metro parking lots enlarged. This is an issue that he thinks many leaders ignore because they do not directly experience the aggravation of waiting in heavy traffic in cramped spaces themselves.
"If supervisors won't get on a bus, they're insincere about changing the services … when leaders have to sit in that traffic themselves, I bet the service improves," said Reid, implementing that as a leader he will remain "on the bus" along with his constituents.
OTHER CAMPAIGN issues that Reid is prioritizing are government spending, reducing taxes and supporting quality education. The last issue has personal significance for Reid, as his mother was a long-time teacher.
In regard to Reid's competition, he said he is neither discouraged nor surprised by McConnell's endorsement of Pat Herrity, whom he is running against in the June 12 Republican primary.
"I think it's great because I don't agree with her position on a lot of issues," said Reid. "She doesn't want another campaign that she's clearly not going to win. ... She saw the writing on the wall," said Reid in regard to his run against McConnell in the 2003 primary. In the three-way primary, McConnell won with 3,451 votes, Reid garnered 2,650 votes and Linda R. Clary trailed with 2,415 votes. Reid cites McConnell's win with only 40 percent of the vote as the reason for her decision not to run for reelection.
Don Dean of Springfield, with whom Reid spoke on one of his campaign walks, also expressed a sentiment that now is an appropriate time for McConnell's political career to end.
"It's time she stepped down. She's retiring and I'm very happy about that," said Dean, who told Reid he would get his vote. "If you get in I'll bug you from time to time about something … I'd like to see the taxes reduced even more," he said.
According to Reid, the majority of the interaction he has with Springfield residents everyday is very positive and encouraging. "I'm amazed with how nice people are," he said. "I think they are impressed that I'm asking for their vote in person, and not just from a glossy brochure. My faith in people is very good."
WHILE SOME PEOPLE simply accept a flyer, many others talk with Reid for several minutes about his plans and their concerns. Several of these Springfield residents have told Reid they share his sense of alarm about air quality and clear cutting. Some of them are pleasantly surprised that Reid, as a Republican, would have such consideration for the environment.
Constant interaction with the public is something that Reid says will remain vital to him as Springfield supervisor. In fact, he hopes his position will be based upon it.
"I want people to see how decisions are actually made, so it [the government] is not just some entity in the corner that people run around in," said Reid.
Reid's supporters are quick to ensure that Reid will remain a man of his word. "He's an honest trustworthy guy," said Brad Butler, a Reid volunteer. "He's a straight shooter who says what he stands for and means what he says." Butler also volunteered during Reid’s 2003 campaign.
Perhaps Reid's biggest supporter is his wife of 13 years, Monica, a nurse at Fair Oaks Hospital who Reid said is his "hero and inspiration." Reid also remains close with his family in California, many of whom flew to Virginia to assist him in the days leading up to the 2003 primary.
Reid is currently doing all that he can do to see that the June 12 primary ends differently than the 2003 primary, with him securing the Republican nomination for Springfield District supervisor. He would then go on to challenge Democrat Mike McClanahan in the November election.
"The supervisors have control of the type of development and the quality if life in this area," said Reid. "I want to look people in the eye and have them be able to call me up … Our local county leaders keep pointing the finger at someone else to fix their problems, but it's time to step up," he said.