Walter Alcorn (D) launched his 2023 Fairfax County Board of Supervisors re-election campaign at the Reston YMCA on Feb. 25, surrounded by Democratic-elected officials present and past as well as supporters.
Chairman Jeff McKay of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors spoke first. “Our values are at stake in this election. … We need to make certain that Walter gets returned to the board because he has a long history of involvement in this community and passion for these issues that we've been able to get across the finish line.”
McKay rattled off the accomplishments to the standing-room only-crowd that included guest speaker U.Sl Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-11), Mark Keam, deputy assistant secretary, U.S. Department of Commerce and former member of the House of Delegates; Steve Descano, Fairfax County Commonwealth Attorney; county supervisors and school board members and supporters. Kathrine K. Hanley, former chairman of the Board of Supervisors and Providence District supervisor, attended, as did many Democratic candidates running in the upcoming elections.
McKay told of Alcorn’s support for the “4,000 new affordable housing units in the pipeline … the Human Rights Campaign for how we treat our LGBTQ communities … fighting climate change … (and) expanded voting access.”
“We need to send a signal in Hunter Mill District, to the rest of the county, how much you support your Supervisor Walter, but how much we're going to turn out the vote and make sure all Democrats across this county win in November,” McKay said.
After the 2019 election, Keam said Virginians built a strong coalition, and progressive movement focused on children, energy, and the environment. Democrats passed many bills, including adding Virginia as a RGGI state to control carbon emissions, supporting schools, funding teachers and public employees, increasing the minimum wage, and more.
“At the 2023 November (election), which is coming up, as well as June [primary] for many of you in this room … This is a chance for Fairfax County to once again lead not only the Commonwealth of Virginia but the rest of the country to show that Democrats are back, progressive policy is working.”
Keam said the Alcorn had been part of every accomplishment he mentioned. “He has been the greatest champion … He’s done a fantastic job making sure your voice is heard,” said Keam. “That’s why I’m here to support him,” said Keam.
Connolly said, “When we find somebody who brings values and commitment, and personal empathy and caring to public life, we ought to reward that.”
“Local government works in Fairfax County,“ said Connolly. “We are so lucky to have Walter Alcorn and the character he brings to the job representing us before the Board of Supervisors.
Alcorn explained how local government to him is the most important level of government. “That’s why I do this,” Alcorn said. He added that folks know the people making the decisions at the local level. “That’s when you get the best government, at least when you elect the right people,” Alcorn said.
Alcorn said he wanted the community involved in land use decisions.
“[Reston’s] comprehensive plan should include equity in an explicit way and should include community health in an explicit way,” Alcorn said.
Alcorn said in the first campaign that when it came down to Reston’s two golf courses, he would listen to the community surrounding the course. He did that. On the county level, he supported the behavioral health model, “where if someone is having a mental health crisis, we don’t always send a police officer with a gun and a taser,” Alcorn said. Instead, people who are trained specifically in mental health crisis intervention respond. He told of fully funding FCPS and pushing for “Charge Up Fairfax” plug-in charging facilities at locations with private garages and how that “is a real challenge; is not easy.”
“Remember that on election day, and actually even before election day, make sure you get out to vote, tell your neighbors, talk to them now, basically lay the groundwork now because we've got to get out [to vote].”