Representing Alexandria, Arlington, and Fairfax

Newsletter - August 12, 2017

In Memoriam

Patsy Ticer

As most of you know, the Honorable Patsy Ticer, Former Mayor and City Council Member of Alexandria and our former State Senator for four terms, died Monday at the age of 82, after living in Alexandria for 70 years and serving us for nearly 30.

Patsy, who was State Senator when I moved to Alexandria in 2001, was known throughout the City and the Commonwealth for her kindness, her strength, her wisdom, and her heart. She was a trailblazer and out-spoken but always tempering her views by listening carefully to others. And she was a strong advocate for children and families. Even after retirement, she continued to be quite active in our community affairs.

Just two years ago when I first ran for delegate, she attended my Campaign Meet and Greet and gave me advice on what I should do if elected. My last picture of her (below) is from mid-May, when she and I, along with city officials, attended the ceremony marking the purchase of the 18th-century Fawcett-Reeder house by the City of Alexandria. As you can see from the picture, she was quite energetic and active, even just a few months ago. 

Funeral Arrangements

Visitation with the Ticer family will be at St. Paul's Episcopal Church (228 S. Pitt Street) on Thursday, August 17, 2017, from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm.

The funeral service will be on Friday, August 18, 2017, at 11 am at St. Paul's. Immediately following the service, a reception will be held at The Lyceum (201 S. Washington Street).

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Sweet Briar College, and the Northern Virginia Conservation Trust.

Patsy will be sorely missed by so many. It is hard to imagine modern-day Alexandria without her.

Mark's Monthly Meetup this Sunday

Los Tios in Del Ray
Sunday, August 13 at 2 pm 

Please join me this Sunday for the August Mark's Monthly Meetup from 2-4 pm at Los Tios Mexican Restaurant in Del Ray (2615 Mount Vernon Avenue in Alexandria). No doubt, we'll have plenty to talk about. Come join us to eat, relax, and discuss policy and politics.

And if you miss August, there's always September, October, November, and December.

Every month, I make sure to be available in this informal setting for any constituent who wishes to discuss a problem or just say hello. Help me get to know you better, so I can better determine your priorities in Richmond. I always strive to be as accessible to you as I can possibly be.

We always have a great discussion at Mark's Monthly Meetups!

Special Election in Fairfax County on August 29

Vote for Karen Keys-Gamarra!

On Tuesday, August 29, an election will be held throughout every part of Fairfax County. Yet only a tiny percentage of voters are expected to vote in the Special Election for Fairfax County School Board scheduled for that day.

On the last day of May, a Republican Member of the Fairfax School Board resigned. But rather than wait a few days longer so as to put the election of her successor on the November general ballot when a wide swath of Fairfax voters could make the choice, this Board Member purposely decided to force Fairfax County to spend almost $1 million dollars so as to hold an election when she hopes very few people will vote and her designated Republican successor can sneak in.

Don't let these machinations succeed! If you live in Fairfax County -- or know people who do -- make sure to mark your calendars (or have them mark their calendars) for August 29. Don't forget. It's in small-turnout elections like these where your vote can really make a difference.

Although the race is technically non-partisan, both parties have endorsed candidates, and Democrats have endorsed Karen Keys-Gamarra, a Fairfax County Planning Commissioner who serves on the Schools Committee and a well-respected family attorney and guardian ad litem who advocates for children in court proceedings to protect their interests. Karen is tremendously qualified and would do great things for our schools, while her Republican opponent is running on a platform of intentionally discriminating against transgender students. As these students already have a higher rate of suicide than others, it boggles the mind that the Republicans are actually running on bigotry as a campaign platform.

So mark your calendars now!

Absentee in-person voting will only take place at the Fairfax County Government Center this year, which, I know, is a long way from those of you in the Grosvenor and Belle View precincts of the 45th. You can vote at your regular polling place any time between 6am and 7pm on Tuesday August 29. If you can't make it that day, please consider voting absentee by mail; you can apply for an absentee ballot HERE. Your application is due on Tuesday August 22, and your ballot is due on Election Day. Or you can trek down to Government Center. However you do it, Fairfax County residents, do not forget to vote!

Supporting Karen Keys-Gamarra for Fairfax County School Board, along with other elected officials.

Support Ralph Northam for Governor

Please join me, Delegate Rip Sullivan, and so many of my colleagues in the General Assembly a week from Wednesday in helping Ralph Northam be elected to the Governor's Mansion. If you get this newsletter, you know how crucial it is that we encourage as many Virginians as possible to vote for Ralph so that he can continue to block the terrible and damaging bills that have been voted on a party-line out of the General Assembly. If you want to attend this fundraiser with us, you can RSVP HERE.

Third Annual Fireworks on the Potomac

We had another packed house of 150 or so for Alexandria's fireworks this year. Thanks to everyone who came to my home for a great time and for supporting our terrific candidates for the House of Delegates this year. I look forward to seeing you all again for the Fourth Annual Fireworks next year!

Thanks to Elza Photography for all the great pictures!
(There are many more on her Facebook page and mine.)

The National Conference of State Legislators
Boston 2017

I just got back this week from my first time attending the annual National Conference of State Legislators in Boston. What a fantastic experience.

First, I spent all day Saturday walking around my alma mater. It was my first time back since college graduation!

Delegates Jennifer Boysko and Kathleen Murphy

Then it was on to the main event, with a large Virginia contingent including two of my favorite Delegates pictured riding in the cab behind me. 

Typical seminar on Health Care Policy


Frank Luntz tried to simultaneously persuade us that the Republicans were largely right on policy but that the Democrats and Republicans also had to work together. He claimed to be non-partisan, but his poll questions seemed to me clearly biased in a conservative way. Still, it was interesting. We must always know how the other side thinks.





For most of the attendees, the highlight was Fenway Park. And I certainly enjoyed my visit to the Green Monster!






But for me -- political history nerd that I am -- the single best part of the three-day event was the spell-binding address by historian Doris Kearns Goodwin on Presidents Lincoln, Teddy and Franklin Roosevelt, and Lyndon Johnson.

Her story-telling made it all come alive, with so much insight and wisdom and passion, that, I must admit, when she finished, I had to wipe away tears. (And, without naming names, I saw at least one of my fellow Delegates in the same predicament.)


Presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin regaled us for more than an hour on the policy, politics, and personal foibles of our nation's greatest Presidents. But it seemed like only ten minutes.

Here I am Tuesday, in the Red Sox bullpen.
Fenway was my second-favorite part of the NCSL Conference.
My favorite part was listening to Doris Kearns Goodwin.

In the Community...

At July's Monthly Meetup. Thanks to Elza Photography for the picture

Supporting Democrat Danica Roem, running for Delegate in Prince William County.
If she wins, she will be the the first openly transgender state legislator in American history,

With a large crowd attending the Flip Virginia Blue fundraiser, along with many Delegates and House candidates.
On the left, I spot Fairfax candidate Donte Tanner, for whom I held a fundraiser in Alexandria.
On the right, I took a lovely picture of my colleagues, Delegates Kathleen Murphy and Rip Sullivan.

At Flip Virginia Blue, I stand with my colleagues,
Delegates Patrick Hope, Alfonso Lopez, Rip Sullivan, and Marcus Simon;
and candidates David Reid, Hala Ayala, Elizabeth Guzman, Jennifer Caroll Foy,
Dawn Adams, Schuyler Van Valkenburg, and Willie Randall, among many others.

Very proud to nominate my Education Advisor and former Alexandria School Board member
Kelly Carmichael Booz to receive the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce's 40 Under 40 award.

Here I am in a picture taken by Kelly, with her husband Hendrick (and a photo bomb by Dak Hardwick).

Here I am (in a terrible picture), speaking at the relaunch of the Alexandria Young Democrats.
I'm so proud to have members of my own team lead its rebirth.
Congratulations both to new President (and my website designer) Ricardo Alfaro
and AYD leader Barrett Fife (my intern, who is so competent, it's easy to forget she's only 17 years old)


I was also proud to personally welcome the Equality Federation Leadership Conference to Alexandria and share memories with some of my colleagues from my gay-rights activism in the 1990's. 

(I co-founded Marriage Equality California and wrote the nation's first full-equality marriage bill there just before moving to Alexandria in 2001.)


Speaking French with Alexandrians at Bastille Night, 
in the lovely home of Jennifer Reading, 
Chair of the Alexandria-Caen Sister City Committee

I met lots of constituents at National Night Out, 

where I attended more than a dozen block parties throughout Alexandria.

On set a couple of weeks ago at FOX News Channels headquarters in Washington, DC.
Click here to watch the clip. (That's the back of my head.) 

I'll be on FOX again TODAY (Saturday Aug. 12) at 1 pm

Upcoming Events I Will Be Attending:
Please join me.

Saturday, August 13, 1:00pm
FOX News

Turn on your TV for five minutes this afternoon for a lively debate.

Sunday, August 13, 2:00pm
Mark's Monthly Meetup
Los Tios, 2615 Mt. Vernon Ave, Alexandria

Monday, August 14, 7:30pm
Ralph Northam's Alexandria Campaign Kickoff

Murphy's Grand Irish Pub, 713 King St, Alexandria

Wednesday, August 16, 9:00am
Arlington Chamber's Annual Legislative Delegation Meeting

2009 14th St N, Suite 100, Arlington

Friday, August 18, 11:00am
Patsy Ticer Funeral

St. Paul's Episcopal Church, 228 S. Pitt Street, Alexandria

Wednesday, August 23, 6:00pm
Fundraiser for Ralph Northam

Bean, Kinney & Korman, P.C., 2300 Wilson Blvd, Suite 700, Arlington

Wednesday, August 23, 7:15pm
Arlington Democrats Joint Campaign Meet and Greet with Ralph Northam

Pamplona, 3100 Clarendon Blvd, Arlington

Thursday, August 24, 1:00pm
Working Group on Predatory Lending

1300 E. Main Street, Richmond

Saturday, August 26, 6:00pm
Fundraiser for Delegate Candidate Alicia Kallen

Arlington Arts Center, 3550 Wilson Blvd, Arlington

Monday, September 4, 12:00pm
Alexandria Democrats Annual Labor Day Picnic

Fort Ward Museum, Area 4, 4301 W. Braddock Road, Alexandria

Monday, September 4, 2:00pm
Arlington Democrats Chili Cook-off

Lyon Park Community Center, 414 N Fillmore St, Arlington

It is always my honor and privilege to serve you.

Delegate Mark Levine
Serving Alexandria, Arlington, and Fairfax in Virginia's 45th District