2015 ASPA Hampton Roads Symposium

“Building Bridges: Working Towards Collaborative Governance and Non-profit”

The annual symposium was held on Friday, March 20, at the Holiday Inn Select (Norfolk Airport, 1570 North Military Highway – Norfolk, VA 23502).


Economic Development Perspective – Economic Development professionals from Hampton Roads city’s discussed individual and collaborated efforts in economic development. Panelists:  Leonard Sledge, Director, Economic Development, city of Hampton; Ben White, Assistant Director of Economic Development, City of Chesapeake; Chuck Rigney, Economic Development Director, City of Portsmouth; Chris Morello, Administrator of Development Projects, City of Newport News Department of Development.

Collaboration & Public-Private Partnership – Experts answered questions from a moderator and the audience on collaboration and public-private partnership. Panelists: Dr. John C. Morris, Professor of Urban Studies and Public Administration at Old Dominion University; Retired Rear Admiral Bill McCarthy, Adjunct Professor of Public Administration at Old Dominion University. Moderator: Tonya Neaves, Adjunct Prof., George Mason University.

Lucnheon Speaker – Christine Morris, Chief Resilience Officer, City of Norfolk

January ASPA HR General Membership Event

Our January membership evening event was on Thursday, January 22, 2015, at Marker 20, 21 East Queens Way, Hampton, VA 23669.

BOARD_SledgeLeonard Sledge, Director, Economic Development in Hampton was our guest speaker. Mr. Sledge became the Economic Development Department Director in June 2013. A Hampton native, he was a member of the city’s economic development authority and worked full-time as the Director of Economic Development at the College of William and Mary before taking the city position. He is a graduate of Morehouse College and Georgia Tech with a bachelor’s in industrial engineering.

Joint ASPA, COMPA, NFBPA Holiday Event

holidayThe Hampton Roads Chapters of American Society of Public Administration (ASPA), National Forum for Black Public Administrators (NFBPA) and the Conference of Minority Public Administrators (COMPA) held their joint holiday event on December 11th from 6 to 8 pm at the Holiday Inn Executive Center, 5655 Greenwich Rd, Virginia Beach, VA 23462.

The program featured a City Manager’s Forum with Marcus D. Jones, City Manager (Norfolk); Selena Cuffee-Glenn, City Manager (Suffolk); and James Baker, City Manager (Chesapeake).


November Luncheon

The Hampton Roads Chapter of ASPA hosted a general luncheon/meeting on Thursday, November 20, 2014 from 11:00 to 12:20 at the Holiday Inn on Greenwich Road in Virginia Beach.

mccormickOur guest speaker was Ms. Robin McCormick, Communications Strategist, for the City of Hampton. Ms. McCormick graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Hollins College in Roanoke and then went to work for The Times-Herald newspaper in Newport News, Virginia, the day after graduation. That afternoon paper merged with its morning sister paper (the Daily Press). McCormick stayed, initially as a reporter, covering a variety of beats: courts, education, youth services, transportation. Over the years, she moved to editing as a copy editor, business editor, features editor, news editor and finally managing editor. Along the way, as the business changed and the newspaper became a bigger media company, she worked with a variety of start-up publications, early website and TV partnerships. Robin left the newspaper business after almost 30 years to come to the city of Hampton to help tell the city’s story. As communications strategist/director of marketing & outreach, she leads a team that is responsible for: city’s website, media relations, cable TV station, social media, communications, citizen engagement, brochures, marketing, awards nominations, etc.

September Luncheon

The September Luncheon was held on Thursday, 09/18/2014 from 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM. In support of the Northeast Conference on Public Administration (NECoPA), ASPAHR’s theme is “Building Bridges: Working Towards Collaborative Governance and Non-profit”.

harrellOur Featured Speaker was Mr. William Harrell, President & CEO of Hampton Roads Transit. His topic of discussion was “Connect Hampton Roads”.


Meet our New President!

Thanks to our chapter leadership team and wonderful participation from our chapter members, our 2013-2014 program year was an outstanding success. Valerie Walker served the past year as our president-elect (vice-president) and also chaired the program committee. She will now move up to the office of president for the 2014-2015 program year.

ASPA photo 3_resizedValerie has been an active member of ASPA since June of 2009. Prior to being elected President, she served as a member of council, Membership Chair and President Elect. She holds a Master’s Degree from Troy University in Public Administration and an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Virginia Commonwealth University. She has been employed with the city of Virginia Beach for 27 years as a Real Estate Appraiser, where she also serves as a member of the Inclusion and Diversity Communications Committee and
as the Wellness Ambassador for her office. She also serves as Parliamentarian for the National Forum for Black Public Administrators and as a member of the Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired, State Rehabilitation Council. Valerie is the proud single mother of two college students, Kinston, a senior at Virginia Wesleyan College and Kyra, a freshman at Howard University.