RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — Delegate Jennifer Carroll Foy officially announced Wednesday that she’s running for Virginia governor in 2021.
A Democrat, Carroll Foy represents Woodbridge and parts of Prince William County and North Stafford in Northern Virginia. She would be the first black woman elected to a governorship in United States history and the first woman governor in Virginia history.
The public defender and foster mother grew up in Petersburg and was one of the first women to graduate from Virginia Military Institute. She’s served in the House of Delegates since 2017, flipping a long-held Republican district with 63% of the vote.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has changed life for all Virginians, Carroll Foy said at top of a press release announcing her bid. “This crisis has exposed what was just beneath the surface: in the wealthiest and most powerful nation in the world, in one of the wealthiest states in the country, working families don’t have what they need to thrive. The status quo has left us with a deeply broken system where too many Virginians are working too hard for too little and can’t catch a break.”
Carroll Foy pointed to affordable health care, infrastructure and criminal justice reform as some of her key issues, along with paid sick leave and more support for public schools.
She touted her work in the House of Delegates to expand Medicaid coverage to 400,000 Virginians, pass “commonsense” gun safety laws, increase salaries for teachers and law enforcement and expand broadband access, and during the COVID-19 crisis to call for investigations into racial disparities, expand vote-by-mail and call for paid sick leave for workers.
“We can’t wait for problems to be solved — the time for action is now. It’s time we listened to those who haven’t been listened to before, and it’s time for fresh leadership. I’m ready to be the leader Virginia needs,” she said in the release.
Carroll Foy will likely face off against both Virginia Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax and Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring in the Democratic primary. Both have said they plan to run, but have yet to officially announce a bid. Virginia governors cannot serve consecutive terms, so current Gov. Ralph Northam will not be on the ballot.
On the Republican side, Sen. Amanda Chase has also announced a run for governor in 2021.
To learn more about Carroll Foy, visit her campaign website.