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Wednesday, October 18, 2017 9:00 AM

Press Release: Michele Edwards invites local educators to discuss public school issues.

For Immediate Release | October 18, 2017
Contact person: Beth Daisey | 540-245-0299  |
Staunton, VA

Michele Edwards, candidate for the House of Delegates from the 20th district, invites local educators – and all involved in staffing public schools – to an early evening get-together at Barren Ridge Vineyards, Thursday, October 26, 2017, 4:30 PM - 6:30 PM.

She looks forward to meeting with educators to speak to issues such as fully funded public schools K-12 and affordable access to higher learning for everyone.

Edwards announced, "As a former educator and parent, I make education my number 1 priority. I want to hear from you; the experts, teachers, administrators, support staff, and maintenance and cafeteria staff that are in the schools every day and know the facts on the ground. I invite you to school me on the issues that matter to you most.”

The Edwards’ campaign describes the evening as a fun, relaxing time of fellowship and sharing.

4:30 PM – 5:45 PM. Social hour with appetizers, selected Barren Ridge Wines, and other beverages
5:45 PM – 6:30 PM. Michele Edwards’ presentation followed by a Q and A session

There is no charge for this event, but donations are welcome. The event will be held rain or shine and will take place on the second floor at Barren Ridge Vineyards, 984 Barren Ridge Road, Fishersville, VA 22939. Event details.

This event is sponsored and authorized by the Michele for Delegate campaign.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017 5:00 PM

Press Release: Michele Edwards, challenging Dickie Bell in the 20th district, receives 7th major endorsement

For Immediate Release October 17, 2017
Contact: Julie Scofield  |  | 301-455-2558

Michele Edwards, candidate for the House of Delegates from the 20th district, has been endorsed by the National Association of Social Workers - Virginia Chapter. This is the seventh endorsement of her candidacy by major organizations.

The National Association of Social Workers stressed Edwards’ commitment to, “the well-being of individuals and families” in her community. They also lauded Edwards for her, “attention to issues that affect professional social workers.”

The National Association of Social Workers’ areas of importance are, “access to affordable healthcare, protection of civil rights, and accessibility to social services.”

Edwards’ priorities are to:

  • Collaborate with all people in the House of Delegates, regardless of party affiliation
  • Defend property rights and our environment
  • Ensure full-funding of public education
  • Establish a living wage, appropriate to each locality in the Commonwealth
  • Find solutions to ensure affordable healthcare for all Virginians
  • Promote responsible gun ownership
  • Protect the rights and dignity of all people, regardless of age, race, gender, sexual orientation, or national origin
  • Support local businesses and attract new ones

Edwards is running a strong campaign to stand up for the needs of working families. She will be a new voice for the District and the Commonwealth in Richmond.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017 9:00 AM

Press Release: Michele Edwards endorsed by the Virginia Chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW)

For Immediate Release: October 16, 2017
Staunton, VA
Contact: Julie Scofield 301-455-2558

Michele Edwards, running in the 20th District against incumbent Dickie Bell, has been honored with the endorsement of the Virginia Chapter of the National Organization for Women.

In their endorsement, the organization announced, “Virginia NOW is proud to endorse and support strong pro-women candidates for office who will represent our values. We know we can count on the following candidates to stand up for women.” The endorsement goes to candidates who will work, “to improve Virginians' access to Medicare, the ACA, and to protect both medical and internet privacy in the digital age.”

One of Edwards’ most important positions is expanding Medicaid in Virginia. She believes it is a, “common-sense solution, and truthfully it is the moral thing to do.” Edwards has pledged to work for equal pay for women; affordable child care for working women, and family leave policies that will better allow parents to balance work and family responsibilities. In Richmond, Edwards will be a strong voice for the women of the 20th district.

Thursday, October 12, 2017 5:00 PM

Press Release: The Sierra Club endorses Michele Edwards, Candidate for the House of Delegates from the 20th district

Sierra ClubFor Immediate Release | October 12, 2017
Staunton, VA
Contact: Julie Scofield 301-455-2558

Michele Edwards, challenging Dickie Bell for the House of Delegates from the 20th district, has been endorsed by the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter.

The Sierra Club has been the nation's largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization since 1892. In their endorsement, the Virginia Chapter stated it, “highly values Edwards’ dedication to the protection of the natural resources of Virginia.” They are confident that she will safeguard the quality of the land, water and air for her constituents and all Virginians.

Edwards has been outspoken in her opposition to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and believes we must invest in renewable energy sources such as wind and solar. In Richmond, she will work to protect Virginia’s mountains and forests and the quality of our water. She will also work to protect individual property rights from Eminent Domain when it is to be used to benefit private corporations rather than the public.

Edwards says, “Our district offers rare and quiet beauty for visitors - majestic mountains, views of rural lifestyle, the opportunity to ski, hike and camp, travel the hop and vine trails, and visit some of our wonderful family farms. We should be looking at capitalizing on this opportunity, rather than allowing energy giants to threaten the health of our environment.” For more, link to:

The Sierra Club will contact their members, urging them to support the candidacy of Edwards.

The Sierra Club’s mission is:

  • To explore, enjoy, and protect the wild places of the earth;
  • To practice and promote the responsible use of the earth's ecosystems and resources;
  • To educate and enlist humanity to protect and restore the quality of the natural and human environment; and to use all lawful means to carry out these objectives.

Their website is

Thursday, October 12, 2017 12:34 PM

Letter to the Editor: Corporations want Dickie Bell; send them a message

NewsLeaderOne reason the man who is our current president was popular during campaign season 2016 is that he was adamant about not seeking any corporate money to finance his efforts. He relied on himself and his followers to get him to the presidency. One reason voters in America were not all that wild about Hillary Clinton was the perception that she is owned by Wall Street. One reason Bernie Sanders remains popular is that people think he too didn’t accept corporate donations for his presidential campaign.

As more Americans become aware – by the day, it seems – that their democracy is being sold to the highest bidders; oil companies, industrial polluters, chemical companies, and banks, the more disgusted we become. People are sick of corporate money in politics.

However, in the 20th District, represented by Dickie Bell, we have a candidate who has pledged not to take one cent of corporate money to finance her campaign. That candidate is Michele Edwards (, running for the House of Delegates. I urge the voters of the 20th District to join me on Nov. 7 in voting for an honest candidate who is not beholden to any corporate masters, and who will focus on her constituents as she works for improvements in education, health care, and protection of the environment.


Article in the Staunton NewsLeader

Thursday, October 12, 2017 12:32 PM

Letter to the Editor: Bell won't face opponents or the public but wants to be re-elected

NewsLeaderThe News Leader has published information about the Forum being hosted by the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library. This is wonderful news! But, I so badly want the candidates for the House of Delegates, Michele Edwards, Will Hammer and Del. Dickie Bell, to participate in a live debate.

Michelle and Will have stated they are eager for such a debate but Dickie Bell makes no comment, nor does he reply to the emails and messages I have personally sent him. The reported reason for a live debate not being possible is "scheduling conflicts" which could not be resolved? Give us a break!

To not participate in a live debate is a poor reflection of Bell's ability and/or willingness to listen to his constituents so that he can actually represent them. Once again, I fear we have a candidate who intends to stick to his party's platform completely disregarding the opinions of those he represents. This is a distressing decision and voters can consider if that is a person they want to represent them. Health care, gun control, tax reform, the Pipeline, as well as other hot topics should be debated in an open forum.


Article in the Staunton NewsLeader

Thursday, October 12, 2017 12:18 PM

Letter to the Editor: School voucher supporters short-sighted

NewsLeaderSchool voucher supporters miss the whole point of a public school education. While learning facts, figures and letters can probably occur in any setting, what one learns in our public schools goes much further. With a curriculum that includes a strong emphasis on civics and government, public schools are often the first (and often only) contact that our children have with the rights and responsibilities of American citizenship.

The shared public school experience helps to develop and encourage in our children a sense of national unity and common purpose. This may be the only chance that children of often very different backgrounds learn to work together in a venue that is a powerful tool for assimilation. Being exposed to a diversity of ideas, opinions and people is also vital in encouraging a culture of scholarship, openness and tolerance that is so critical to the success of any free and democratic society. Public schools are one of the last remaining institutions in our nation that allows us to live out our national motto of E Pluribus Unum (out of many, one).

Let’s be honest here and admit that the school voucher movement is really all about the public funding of private schools to expand their market share and create self segregated schools. This “Balkanization” of education promises to adversely affect the large majority of our children by robbing funds from their education to give it to an often select and privileged few. The result will be a counterproductive and highly dysfunctional educational caste system.

Michele Edwards, a seasoned educator who is currently running for Virginia's District 20th, is very familiar with the importance of a public school education. Rather than destroy our schools through neglect and defunding, she opposes school vouchers and has vowed to support and improve public education for the value that it provides our nation. A vote for her is a vote for your children and their future.


Article in the Staunton NewsLeader

Wednesday, October 11, 2017 2:47 PM

Letter to the Editor: People want leadership in House of Delegates - for a change

NewsLeaderVoters in Staunton, Waynesboro, and most of Augusta County can toss the old ideas and vote for strong and effective leadership in the House of Delegates by electing Michele Edwards (20th District) and Angela Lynn (25th District).

Michele and Angela are committed to slaying the gerrymander, the evil dragon that has stolen our democracy by insuring incumbents’s re-election and rendering politicians deaf to their constituents. Michele and Angela support a nonpartisan redistricting process to assure fair elections and guarantee that every voter’s voice is equally heard.

Michele and Angela will not accept donations from large corporations. They are committed to putting the people of their districts first, not the deep pockets of lobbyists.

Michele and Angela support environmental protection and will assure the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, if built, is constructed to the highest standards protecting our water, air, and property rights.

Michele and Angela support policies that encourage a brighter future for all Virginians including solutions for affordable healthcare and funding pre-K through 12 education and higher education. They know children are our future and are committed to assuring every child has the opportunity to reach her potential.

You owe it to yourself and to your community to learn more about and support these two qualified and committed candidates for the House of Delegates. Check out the facts at: and Michele Edwards and Angela Lynn offer new vision and new ideas – vote for leadership... for a change!

Mount Solon

Article in the Staunton NewsLeader

Wednesday, October 11, 2017 2:43 PM

Letter to the Editor: Edwards would represent her 20th District constituents well in House of Delegates

NewsLeaderBy some metrics our economy has never been stronger. The stock market has tripled in value since 2009 and many companies are more profitable than ever. However, if you talk to many in our area, that success seems to have had little impact locally. Many of our friends and neighbors struggle to make ends meet, and it's not because they don't want to work hard; they either can't find a job or don't have the training needed for the jobs that are available. If we want Virginia, and by extension America, to be "great", then we need to ensure that our economy works for everyone. Big businesses such as Dominion buy influence in Richmond to pass legislation that benefits their bottom line, rather than their customers. Many politicians are all too eager to accept campaign donations in return for future favors.

Michele Edwards isn't one of those politicians. If elected, her choices in the House of Delegates will be in the best interest of her constituents--who also happen to be the biggest contributors to her campaign. She will work to protect our thriving industries, like agriculture and tourism, while also promoting new ones like clean energy and technology. The unemployed in the 20th district aren't looking for a handout but a hand up. They want local jobs so they can remain in the Valley and contribute to our community. We need representatives in Richmond that work for us, not for a campaign check, and Michele Edwards fits the bill!


Article in the Staunton NewsLeader

Wednesday, October 11, 2017 2:00 PM

Press Release: Michele Edwards to take part in Community Criminal Justice Days event on Oct. 19th.

Michele EdwardsFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | Oct. 10, 2017
Contact Person:
Julie Scofield |  301-455-2558

Michele Edwards, candidate for The Virginia House of Delegates from the 20th District, will appear at Blue Ridge Community College on Oct. 19. BRCC is sponsoring, “a two-day summit to address criminal justice issues on a local, state, and national level” that will begin on Oct. 18. The organizers hope community dialogue will lead to strategy for improvement in Virginia.

A Candidates Forum, beginning at 4:30 p.m. on Oct. 19, will wrap up the event and is free to the public. Candidates for the 2018 VA General Assembly session, as well as current delegates, will be briefed on justice-related issues communities wish to see taken up in the session, and are invited to share their views on future legislative action.

Edwards, who announced her candidacy in March, continues to volunteer weekly at Middle River Regional Jail, helping individuals there gain basic skills such as budgeting, in order to become self-supporting upon release.

Other participants are:

Delegate Steve Landes
Delegate Dickie Bell
Delegate Ben Cline
Candidate Angela Lynn
Candidate Brent Finnegan

The two-day event is sponsored by the Institute for Reform and Solutions, “an organization committed to facilitating reform and developing cost effective, restorative and balanced solutions to address the dysfunctions of the Criminal Justice System.”

The Event is to be held in the Plecker Workforce Center at BRCC, 1 College Lane, Weyers Cave, Virginia 24467

Wednesday, October 11, 2017 1:16 PM

Bell, house opponents to answer questions separately, not debate, at Staunton forum

NewsLeaderSTAUNTON - Del. Dickie Bell, R-Staunton, and the two challengers for his Virginia House of Delegates seat, Michele Edwards and Will Hammer, will each tackle questions individually at a taped candidate forum ahead of the upcoming Nov. 7 election.

Sunday, October 8, 2017 9:00 PM

Video/News: Waynesboro Dems open new campaign headquarters

WHSVWAYNESBORO, Va. (WHSV) - Democrats in Waynesboro opened their new campaign office on Saturday October 7, 2017.

More than a dozen volunteers gathered to canvas the area and build support for those running for office, including Virginia 20th district candidate Michele Edwards.

Saturday, October 7, 2017 6:59 PM

Video/News: Michelle Edwards Campaigns in Waynesboro for Delegate Seat


Michele Edwards is interivewed during the Waynesboro Democratic Headquarters Grand Opening on Oct 7. Watch the video and read the news article.

With one month to go until Election Day, a democratic candidate for the House of Delegates is stepping up her campaign in the Shenandoah Valley.

Friday, October 6, 2017 11:57 AM

Letter to the Editor: 20th District gets to make a choice for delegate

NewsLeaderElections are your opportunity.

Elections, be they national,state or local,are special because they only come around every few years ─ but more so because it is the one time every few years that you, as a citizen have the opportunity to decide who, which candidate, will work to provide the best quality of life you and your family can have.

An election is coming up in just a matter of days for a delegate, a representative of you, for the 20th House District including the cities of Staunton and Waynesboro and Augusta, Highland, and Nelson Counties in the Virginia state government.

The House of Delegates works on making decisionsin the state government about health, taxes, education, safety, business, and generally about the quality of life of citizens of the District and the State of Virginia.

In this election there is a choice between Richard Bell, who has served as your delegate for several sessions, and Michele Edwards, who wants to replace Mr. Bell as your delegate.

The days between today and the election on Nov. 7 are an opportunity for you as a concerned voter to look over the legislative history of Mr. Bell and also take the time to learn about the things that Ms. Edwards supports and proposes that will make the quality of your life better.

I urge everyone who will be voting to not just vote to support a candidate on name only, but to give thought if continuing along the same path is the way, or if taking a new route for change and a fresh approach is best.

Whoever you decide to support, be sure to let your voice be heard and vote.


Article in the Staunton NewsLeader

Friday, October 6, 2017 8:00 AM

Press Release: Michele Edwards releases statement on Anthem/Augusta Health stalemate.

Michele EdwardsFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Oct. 6, 2017
Contact: Julie Scofield
Staunton, VA

As a candidate for state delegate, I am concerned about the impasse between Augusta Health and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Augusta Health is listed as one of America’s 50 best hospitals by Healthgrades, an independent reviewer of health care quality and services, and was once again listed among the 100 Great Community Hospitals by Becker’s Hospital Review.

AHC is our community’s primary health resource and is our locality’s largest employer. I am concerned that the loss of revenues will impact the facility and its employees, and I am concerned that members of our community will have to travel long distances to receive care that could and should be provided locally.

When elected, I will do everything I can to support and assist AHC obtain fair and equitable reimbursement. To be the best representative of our community, I do not take contributions from corporations like Anthem, unlike my opponent who has accepted donations from the insurer.

Thank you.

Michele Edwards

Friday, September 29, 2017 12:00 AM

Coalition to Stop Gun Violence Endorses Michele Edwards

Coalition to Stop Gun ViolenceOn September 29 the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence released its Virginia Delegate Challenger Endorsements. Michele Edwards, candidate for Virginia's 20th District is in the list as are 11 other challengers for Virginia House of Delegates in the 2017 elections.

Thursday, September 28, 2017 3:10 PM

Letter to the Editor: Education is key, and Edwards is candidate for delegate who can help

Staunton NewsLeaderThere’s an election coming in November and the results matter to our community and the lives of our fellow citizens. The people we elect can influence lots of issues that matter to us because good government at all levels has a role to play in the quality of our society. The people we elect work for us to strengthen the institutions of government and it is our duty to expect them to produce results and answer to us as citizens. It is their duty to perform.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017 10:11 AM

Dems Flip Statehouse Seats in Florida, New Hampshire; Wins Bode Well for Virginia House Dems

Sept. 27, 2017
Contact: Katie Baker, 740-485-1125

RICHMOND, Va. – Virginia House Democratic Leader David J. Toscano and Caucus Chair Charniele Herring today released the following statement on Democrats’ successful efforts to flip two Republican-held state legislative seats last night in special elections in Florida and New Hampshire:

“Democratic victories last night in the bellwether states of Florida and New Hampshire bode well for our candidates this November. We have candidates running in 54 districts that Republicans currently hold, including in 17 districts that Hillary Clinton won in 2016. Our base is energized, organized and knocking on thousands of doors across the Commonwealth every single week. We’re talking to voters about the issues that matter to their families and communities, including access to affordable health care and adequate funding for our public schools. We encourage anyone looking to get involved to adopt a candidate in their area and help them knock on doors.”

The victories last night bring the total of state legislative seats that Democrats have flipped since Trump’s election to eight. Republicans have not flipped a single Democratic seat in the same time period.


Paid for and Authorized by the House Democratic Caucus

Tuesday, September 26, 2017 11:00 AM

DPVA Statement on National Voter Registration Day

VADEMSRICHMOND, Va. – Democratic Party of Virginia Chairwoman Susan Swecker today issued the following statement in recognition of National Voter Registration Day, which is celebrated annually on the fourth Tuesday of September:

“Voting is a fundamental right, and we as Democrats remain committed to ensuring that everyone who is eligible to vote can do so without obstruction.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017 9:00 AM

Absentee voting now open in Virginia

The NewsLeader 9/26/2017 10:07 AM

Absentee voting for Virginia's Nov. 7 General Election is now underway, the Virginia Dept. of Elections announced Monday.

Sunday, September 24, 2017 3:45 PM

Press Release: Michele Edwards, running to defeat Dickie Bell in the 20th District, endorsed by Humane Dominion.

Michele EdwardsFor immediate release: Staunton VA, 09/24/2017
Contact: Julie Scofield | 301-455-2558

Anti-pipeline candidate Michele Edwards, who recently outpaced her opponent Dickie Bell in fundraising has earned the endorsement of Humane Dominion.

Humane DominionDedicated to making Virginia a safer place for animals, the political action committee helps elect animal-friendly candidates. They have endorsed Michele Edwards in her bid for the House of Delegates from the 20th District.

Humane Dominion explains, “Every year, bills are introduced in the General Assembly that have the potential to help or harm the animals we all love. Humane Dominion recognizes that by having legislators in office who are sympathetic to animal issues, we can be much more successful in passing laws that protect animals and defeating those that would hurt them.”

More information about Edwards can be found on

More information about Humane Dominion can be found on

To interview Michele Edwards, please call 301-455-2558

Saturday, September 23, 2017 2:54 PM

Letter to the Editor: Edwards’s allegiance is to the voters — not corporations

Why is the Republican Party rushing a health care bill through Congress that polls show 80 percent of Americans dislike and groups like the AMA, AARP, American Cancer Association, and the National Disability Rights Network have denounced?

Thursday, September 21, 2017 5:17 PM

Letter to the Editor: Bell stands in the way of insurance for 4,000 of our neighbors

The NewsLeaderFour thousand. That’s the number of your neighbors, friends, people you know, possibly family members, living in the Staunton, Augusta, Waynesboro area who would have health care if the Virginia legislature had approved Medicaid expansion. These aren’t freeloaders. They are people in low-paying jobs who work for small companies that can’t afford to offer their employees health insurance. When adults sign up for Medicaid they are more likely to get their children coverage through the Children’s State Health Insurance Program. Kids with health care; that’s a good thing.

So why hasn’t the Republican majority in the House of Delegates, including our Del. Dickie Bell, approved Medicaid expansion? They say it will cost too much. However, the state will only pick up 10% of the costs, with the rest of the money coming from Washington. The cost of health care for people who don’t have Medicaid or other insurance greatly exceeds Medicaid costs, because people don’t get preventive care or early care. They wait too long and then the care is very expensive. My cousin died because she waited too long. My friend went bankrupt because she couldn't afford insurance and her bills were astronomical. We taxpayers and insured patients pay for the shortfall.

It’s time for the House of Delegates to move forward. For them to do so, we need to vote in new legislators.

Here in the 20th District, that means voting for Michele Dixon Edwards, who will help lead Virginia towards medical coverage for all. Her opponent, Dickie Bell, the incumbent, serves on the Health, Welfare and Institutions Committee which has opposed Medicaid expansion. The USA needs to quit its backward stance on universal health care. We are the only developed country without it. As we continue to fall further behind the rest of the world, this area is one where we can catch up. We can start on the local level, getting coverage for those four thousand neighbors, with sensible health care decisions in Richmond. Michele Edwards can help get us there. Please look at and vote on November 7.


Article in the Staunton NewsLeader

Thursday, September 21, 2017 11:51 AM

Press Release: Anti-Pipeline Candidate Michele Edwards outpaced opponent Dickie Bell

Michele EdwardsFor Immediate Release: Staunton, VA 09/19/17

Anti-Pipeline Candidate Michele Edwards outpaced opponent Dickie Bell in raising funds in race for VA House of Delegates 20th District seat.

During the reporting period from July 1 to August 31, Edwards raised $23,768 while her opponent, Dickie Bell raised $14,910. All campaign donations over $100 are publically disclosed in Virginia.

Edwards, running for office for the first time, refuses to accept donations from corporations to support her candidacy, depending instead on contributions from actual voters who want to see a change in Richmond. And it’s working. Edwards made three major campaign appearances over the weekend of Sept. 16 in her district. She spoke to voters at the African-American Heritage Festival in Gypsy Hill Park, the Women for Michele event at Gaie Lea Farm in Staunton, and a benefit concert with Angela Lynn (running for the House of Delegates from the 25th district) in Waynesboro. Everywhere she appeared Michele was met with enthusiastic responses from a public eager for her to represent them in the General Assembly.

Her campaign manager, Kirk Wesley says, "This is just another example of Michele’s tremendous work ethic and ability to reach across party lines to gain the trust and support of the diverse constituency of the 20th district. Most of Michele’s donations were raised in small gatherings, in living rooms across the district, as she listened to the concerns of voters. People are responding to Michele's message of inclusive representation in a positive way and view her candidacy as a much needed breath of fresh air.”

To interview Michele Edwards, please call Kirk Wesley, campaign manager.

Edwards’ website is

This event is paid for and supported by the Michele for Delegate Campaign.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017 5:35 PM

Letter to the Editor: Del. Dickie Bell tries to bring creationism into public school classrooms

The NewsLeaderThe General Assembly’s HB 207 was a bill to bring creationism into public school science classes. Don’t take my word for it: the bill’s sponsor, Delegate Richard “Dickie” Bell, has said publicly that the “scientific controversies” mentioned in the bill include, among other things, “the theory of evolution.”

Let’s be clear: The only remotely convincing arguments that evolution is not the way the current diversity of life on Earth arose are grounded not in scientific empiricism but in religious faith. This bill, therefore, by its sponsor’s admission, is intended to let religious ideas into public
school science classes.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017 8:00 AM

Letter to the Editor: Voters of House Dist. 20 deserve a debate — now

As a concerned citizen of Staunton and Augusta County, why is there no debate between the three candidates running for the District 20 seat in the House of Delegates.

A nonpartisan invitation for debate has been requested of each of the three candidates and declined by one.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017 8:24 PM

Press Release: Local Democrats announce State Sen. John S. Edwards will be the Keynote Speaker at benefit to “Paint the Valley Blue Again!”

For immediate release: Staunton, VA 09/19/17
Contact: Frank Nolan | 540-294-0310  

State Senator John S. Edwards (VA- Roanoke) will be the Keynote Speaker for the first-ever Joint Social and Silent Auction Fall Benefit on Sunday, October 1, 2017, at Fairfax Hall in Waynesboro, VA from 5:00 to 7:30 pm. The Democratic Committees of Staunton, Augusta County, and Waynesboro are sponsoring the event.

A significant portion of the proceeds from this benefit will be donated to the campaigns of Democrats Michele Edwards (20th District) and Angela Lynn (25th District) for their respective runs for seats in the House of Delegates in Richmond. Michele Edwards and Angela Lynn will appear at the gathering.

Senator Edwards was appointed the United States Attorney for the Western District of Virginia (1980-1981) by President Carter and currently serves in Virginia’s Senate, having been first elected in 1995. He previously served on Roanoke City Council (1993-95) and as Vice Mayor of Roanoke (1994-95).

Senator Edwards is also an adjunct professor at the University of Virginia Law School where he teaches trial advocacy.

During the event, attendees can participate in a social hour as they bid on the silent and live auctions to benefit the Democratic candidates.

Cost is $30 per admission.
In addition, interested folks can help the fundraiser by becoming sponsors:

• Blue Mountain - $500 = 6 event admissions
• Blue Sky - $250 = 4 event admissions
• Blue Valley - $100 = 2 event admissions


Article in the Augusta Free Press

Friday, September 15, 2017 11:24 AM

Letter to the Editor: Elect Edwards to break with Virginia's political status quo

The NewsLeaderMake your vote count. Americans are moderate in temperament and practical in action. We are a nation of problem solvers. So why is it that we simply can't get our political leaders to do the same? It certainly wasn't always that way as past generations were able to work together to accomplish great things.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017 4:11 PM

Letter to the Editor: Watch carefully; GOP still eyeing Obamacare repeal

The News LeaderThe fast pace of the news cycle can quickly let us lose track of what Congressional Republicans may still be trying to do to their constituents: Repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. Speaker Paul Ryan has not said that he has given up (despite two recent defeats), nor has Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. It is the duty of all of us to make sure that the Republican Party will not take health care away from millions of people. Without the ACA, my family would have lost our house and even faced bankruptcy.

Thursday, September 7, 2017 11:00 AM

Candidate Michele Edwards responds to Trump's decision on DACA

Video story on WHSV 3 ABC

AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) -- Some people in Augusta County are reacting after DACA was rescinded, including a woman running for office. House of Delegates candidate Michele Edwards is sharing her concerns over the announcement.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017 12:00 AM

Press release: Michele Edwards, Democratic Candidate for VA 20th District, to initiate the 'Women for Michele' group at Sept.17 event in Staunton, VA

For immediate release: Staunton, VA. 09/05/2017

Michele Edwards and Susan Swecker

On Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017, Michele Edwards, candidate for delegate for the VA General Assembly from the 20th district will headline the initial event of “Women for Michele.” This group has been organized for local women to create a grassroots movement resulting in a significant gain of voters at the local polls on Election Day, November 7, 2017. The event will be held at Gaie Lea at 267 Bells Lane in Staunton. Interested women and others will learn how to encourage families, friends, and colleagues to get out the vote for the Democratic Party.

In addition to Edwards, other speakers include keynote speaker, Susan Swecker, Chair of the Democratic Party of Virginia. Pat Hunt, former chaplain of Mary Baldwin University will introduce the speakers.

There is no admission charge to attend this event; all are welcome.

  • 2:00 PM - 2:45 PM - Social Mix and Mingle with refreshments
  • 2:45 PM - 3:30 PM - Pat Hunt introduces the speakers: Susan Swecker and Michele Edwards
  • 3:30 PM - 4:00 PM - Q & A from the audience for speaker participation

During this event, donations to the Michele for Delegate Campaign are encouraged.

Additionally, during this event, there will be a collection of non-perishable feminine and baby products for delivery to the Texas storm victims of Hurricane Harvey.

This event is paid for and supported by the Michele for Delegate Campaign.

Monday, September 4, 2017 7:47 PM

Benefit concert for Angela Lynn. Michele Edwards

Augusta Free Press: Benefit concert for Angela Lynn. Michele Edwards

The event provides citizens the chance to meet Angela Lynn, 25th District Democratic nominee, and Michele Edwards, 20th District Democratic nominee, who are running for their respective House of Delegate seats, currently held by Steve Landes and Dickie Bell.

Monday, September 4, 2017 12:00 AM

OPINION: Why Won’t Politicians Meet with Their Constituents?

Why Won’t Politicians Meet with Their Constituents? By JENNIFER LEWIS, vice chair of the Waynesboro Democratic Committee
The Daily Progress | Sep 4, 2017

. . . . Luckily, we have people running for office who do want to meet with voters. I sat at a table recently with Democrat Michele Edwards, who is running to unseat Republican Del. Dickie Bell, as she visited with Waynesboro residents, remembering their names, listening intently as they shared their experiences, concerns and thoughts.

Friday, September 1, 2017 1:58 PM

Letter to the Editor: I really believe in gender equality and improving the wage gap

The NewsLeaderAs a young woman I have become very concerned about women’s rights. I am very worried about the wage gap, girls and women’s access to education, and women and men having equal rights. The American Association of University Women says that white women make 80 cents to a white man’s $1, and the pay gap exists in most jobs. African American women get 63 cents and Latino women get 54 cents to a man’s dollar.

Thursday, August 31, 2017 12:00 PM

Letter to the Editor: How gullible does Gillespie think we are on taxes?

One of Republican Ed Gillespie’s campaign promises is to cut the state income tax by 10 percent, which according to his website will put nearly $1,300 per year into the pockets of a family of four.

Well, I did the math and you’d have to be naïve or gullible to believe it.

Sunday, August 27, 2017 10:22 AM

Letter to the Editor: Edwards has small business expertise the Valley needs

The News Virginian

It is estimated that 25 percent of American malls and retail stores will close in the next five years. Chains such as Sears, Kmart, JC Penney and Macy’s plan to close about 400 stores this year — that’s on top of the many that were shuttered in previous years.

Even restaurants like Applebee’s are feeling the heat. That’s a lot of people losing jobs. That’s why I am encouraged by the candidacy of Michele Edwards for the Virginia House of Representatives. Michele works for a non-profit organization that supports small business owners in Haiti with training, mentoring, and access to capital. It’s the kind of knowledge and skill we need here in the Valley.

Saturday, August 26, 2017 12:00 AM

Letter to the Editor: Public education at stake in Nov. election

The News Virginian

I taught English for 30 years and am now retired and a relative newcomer to this region. Since January, I have been appalled that the current administration in the White House seems — with the appointment of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education — determined to eradicate public

Thursday, August 24, 2017 6:30 PM

Letter to the Editor: Edwards would make lasting change as delegate

NewsLeader Letter to the EditorOn Saturday, Aug. 19, through an organization I started called Local and Vocal, I sat and listened to a panel of women at Staunton Public Library discuss the issues that women face when struggling with poverty.

Thursday, August 24, 2017 9:50 AM

Letter to the Editor: Candidates have to be seen and heard

Augusta Free Press

The 20th District of the Virginia House of Delegates election is November 7, 2017.

The candidates for the election are Mr. Richard Bell, the republican candidate and current member of the house of delegates since 2009; and Ms. Michele Edwards, the Democratic candidate, who believes good public education, job creation, and business are the solution to poverty. Both, by their stated education and experiences seem to have somewhat similar credentials for the office.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017 6:00 AM

Michele Dixon Edwards receives the Virginia AFL-CIO’s endorsement in her bid to unseat Dickie Bell in the 20th General Assembly district.

Michele EdwardsFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 23, 2017


On August 18, 2017, the Virginia AFL-CIO gave their endorsement in the race for delegate from the 20th district, Michele Edwards. The organization, a long-time advocate for working Virginians, actively monitors the Virginia General Assembly, seeks strong worker compensation and worker safety laws, supports heath care for retirees, and promotes civil and equal rights.

The Virginia AFL-CIO is the largest collective for workers in Virginia, and it has long recognized the need for support in the General Assembly for working people in Virginia. In endorsing Michele Edwards against incumbent Dickie Bell, it has clearly stated that Edwards will work tirelessly for the working people in her district.

Article on the Augusta Free Press

Tuesday, August 22, 2017 10:37 PM

Eye witness to events in Charlottesville

Michele EdwardsFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 22, 2017

Contact: Michael Edwards,


Below is a statement released by Edwards, where she shares her experiences and reactions - as an eye witness - to Charlottesville:

I am sharing my thoughts about my experience in Charlottesville on Saturday, August 12. That day will stay forever in our hearts and souls, seared there, but we can – indeed we must - use it to help one another and the Commonwealth move forward.

On Friday night Aug. 11, I, like many of you, was stunned as I watched a live stream video of hundreds of young white men marching on the grounds of UVA. I have no words to describe the disgust I felt as I tried to comprehend what and why they were doing what they were doing. Read more . . .

Friday, August 18, 2017 5:04 PM

Letter to the Editor: Michele Edwards would bring fresh approach to Richmond

The News LeaderAugust 18, 2017

Don’t we all want, for ourselves and our families, good education and training to qualify us for satisfying jobs, access to quality health care at affordable costs, security for our families, and clean air and water? Our state government and its House of Delegates are instrumental in helping citizens of the Virginia 20th District achieve those objectives. Does this, or any, election matter? Read more . . .

Thursday, August 17, 2017 2:43 PM

Press Release: Democratic favorite and NO PIPELINE candidate Tom Perriello to headline NELSON COUNTY fundraiser for Candidate Michele Edwards



  • Larry Stopper
    Landline 434 361 2344
    Cell 201 988 2032

On Thursday, August 24, 2017, 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM at the Blue Mountain Brewery in Afton, former Congressman Tom Perriello, who carried Nelson County in his bid for the Democratic Nomination for governor in June, will headline a fundraiser for Michele Edwards, candidate for the General Assembly in the 20th District. Perriello, who carried Nelson County on a No-Pipeline platform will be on hand to lend his support to Edwards, who also opposes the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. Perriello will speak between 7 – 8 PM. Edwards will appear after that.

Candidates for Nelson County Supervisor, Ernie Reed and Justin Shrimp will also appear to offer support for Michele Edwards.

The event, to be held in the private function room at the Blue Mountain Brewery, is a fundraiser. Though there will be no entry fee, people who attend will be able to donate to the Edwards campaign. Food and drink will be available for purchase.

No Pipeline activists urged to attend, as are supporters of Edwards.

No entry fees, nor are tickets or reservations required.

The brewery is located at
9519 Critzers Shop Rd
Afton, VA 22920

Article on the Augusta Free Press

Thursday, August 17, 2017 12:00 AM

Newsletter: An update from the campaign

Michele Edwards at Augusta County Fair with volunteer Robert Horowitz, her niece and Campaign Manager Kirk Wesley

Read the latest newsletter from the campaign with highlights about our new campaign manager; thoughts about Charlottesville; and information on how you can join in to support our team.

We are also excited about the launch of our new "Interns for a change" program for high school and college students who want to join in to experience a political campaign first-hand.

Friday, August 11, 2017 10:32 AM

Letter: Friends of Augusta endorses Michele Edwards for 20th House District seat

Augusta Free Press

Published Friday, Aug. 11, 2017, 10:32 am

Friends of Augusta is pleased to announce that we are endorsing Michele Edwards for House of Delegates, representing the 20th District, a seat currently held by Dickie Bell. Read more . . .

Thursday, August 10, 2017 6:15 PM


With regret we have to announce that the SPUDATHON scheduled to take place on National Potato Day, August 19, has been cancelled. Event planners will announce a new date still to be determined.

The event – a family fun outing at the Augusta Expo – will feature games, including Potato Cannon Competitions, potato sack races, and potato hunts, with proceeds going to:

  • The Augusta, Staunton, and Waynesboro Area Schools Food Program through direct donation
  • The Blue Ridge Area Food Bank. Attendees who bring a non-perishable food item will get $1 off admission
  • Valley Mission will receive triple the amount of potatoes used in the competitions
  • Michele Edwards will be on hand to compete in the fun and games.

The event will also feature stuffed roasted potatoes with all the fixings and French fries, in addition to local food and beverage trucks.

Saturday, July 15, 2017 12:00 AM

OPINION: Monkey puzzles and lawmakers: make 'em take the pledge!

The News Virginian

Here’s a start: 45 House of Delegates candidates so far, mostly Democrats, have signed a pledge that they'll refuse to accept campaign cash from Appalachian Power and Dominion Energy, the two state-regulated electric power monopolies. Among them are two House candidates: Michele Edwards, a candidate in District 20, and Angela Lynn, a candidate in District 25.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017 12:00 AM

Augusta Expo to host potato cannon competition

FISHERSVILLE – Augusta Expo in Fishersville has hosted tractor pulls, rodeos, agricultural events and will soon be able to add to its list the first ever Spudathon.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017 12:00 AM

Potato cannon competition coming this August

The event is being put on in part with the Michele Edwards for Delegate campaign. Edwards is vying for the 20th seat in the Virginia House of Delegate, currently held by Va. Del. Dickie Bell.

Saturday, June 10, 2017 12:00 AM

Staunton Democrat opposes Incumbent House 20 Del. Bell

WAYNESBORO — Michele Edwards is a former special education teacher and a strong proponent of Virginia's public schools — experience and passion she hopes to bring to the House of Delegates.

Sunday, May 28, 2017 12:00 AM

Our Candidates

Candidate for the Virginia House of Delegates in District 20. Standing up for Virginia citizens in Augusta, Highland, and Nelson Counties.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017 12:00 AM

Democratic Committee hosts Lt. Governor forum

Many from throughout the Shenandoah Valley came to Mary Baldwin University on Monday night to watch a live stream debate between Ralph Northam and Tom Periello, the two Democratic candidates vying to be Virginia's next governor.

The event was sponsored by the Staunton, Augusta County and Waynesboro Democratic Committee.

It allowed community members to hear from House of Delegate candidates, Angela Lynn and Michele Edwards, as well.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017 12:00 AM

Democrat announces bid for Bell's seat

Staunton resident Michele Edwards announced her intention Thursday to seek the Democratic nomination for House District 20. Bell has held the 20th District seat since 2010.

Friday, March 17, 2017 9:46 AM

Staunton Woman Announces Campaign for 20th District Delegate

More than 50 people were in attendance as Michelle Edwards announced her candidacy to seek the Democratic nomination on the steps of the Augusta County Circuit Court Thursday.

Friday, March 17, 2017 12:00 AM

Democrat Michele Edwards Rises to Challenge

District 20 is being contested by a Democratic candidate this cycle. The seat is currently held by Republican Richard "Dickie" Bell.

Thursday, March 16, 2017 12:00 AM

Edwards Announces for the 20th District

Today, on the steps of the Augusta County Courthouse in Staunton, Virginia, Michele Edwards announced her intention to seek the Democratic nomination for the 20th district seat in the House of Delegates.

Thursday, March 16, 2017 12:00 AM

Bell gets Democratic challenger for delegate seat

Democrat Michele Edwards will challenge Del. Dickie Bell, R-Staunton, for his District 20 seat in the House of Delegates, she announced in front of the Augusta County Courthouse Thursday.

Committee to Elect Michele Edwards
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