Ashburn resident David Reid has announced he will challenge Del. Thomas A. “Tag” Greason (R) for the 32nd district seat in the Virginia House of Delegates this year.
“I started to recognize that a lot of the issues that are being addressed down in Richmond are not really the issues that are important to the people of Loudoun County,” Reid said. “If you ask people, is your commute better today than it was eight years ago, then the answer’s probably no.”
Reid said he wants to bring full-day kindergarten to the county, focus on improving transportation in Northern Virginia, and send more state funding to colleges. He described himself as a moderate and pragmatist, and said that more of the tax dollars Loudoun sends to Richmond should come back to Loudoun. He said Richmond should invest in Loudoun, because Loudoun is an economic engine for the state.
“If things get bogged down in Loudoun … and people start leaving, and new businesses don’t locate here because it’s one of the worst possible transportation areas in the nation, then that’s going to have a downstream effect on the state budget and all those other pet projects that people want to do,” Reid said.
As to specific solutions to the area’s perennial transportation problems and other challenges in Richmond, Reid said “I don’t’ have answers to those questions, because I’m not down there, but I do know those questions have been asked for years and we’re not getting a good answer.”
Reid and his family are 17-year residents of Ashburn. He retired from the Naval Reserves after 23 years as an intelligence officer, having risen to the rank of commander and serving deployments in South Korea and Iceland. He claims 30 years of experience in in banking, telecommunications, and as a small business executive.
He was born in rural Rockbridge County. After his parents divorced when he was six, he lived with his father and four siblings in a cinder block house with no indoor plumbing and heated by a wood stove.
“I remember I didn’t know I was poor until I got called into the principal’s office in fifth grade, and … they told me that they’d collected clothes and shoes for the poor children,” Reid said. “So we’ve got this box of stuff for you to take home. Until that point, I didn’t really know I was poor.”
From there, he moved to the United Methodist Children’s Home in Richmond, then to Oklahoma with his youngest brother to live with foster parents. He went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in political science from Northeastern Oklahoma State University, a master’s degree in strategic intelligence from the Joint Military Intelligence College and participated in graduate studies on international development at American University.
Greason, also a military veteran having served with the Army Corps of Engineers, was first elected to the seat in 2010. He serves on the Appropriations, Education, and General Laws committees and is a budget conferee.