Alumni News

The Absence of Trust and Respect - We Must Do Better

We are particularly proud today of one of our alumni, Wendell Taylor, a member of the Political Leaders Program Class of 2001. Wendell has shared a gripping testimonial about his experience as an African American — even as a prosecutor he could not avoid searing, painful experiences.

VA Senate Gains Two Sorensen Alumnae

Senators-elect Ghazala Hashmi (D-Richmond) and Jen Kiggans (R-Virginia Beach) met and hit it off in March at Sorensen’s Candidate Training Program. In November, each prevailed in harshly partisan contests in suburban swing districts. Now they've been featured together in the Washington Post.

A Birthday Card for Sorensen

Happy Birthday, Sorensen!

Several of our generous alumni and friends have already signed Sorensen's 25th Birthday card by making a gift that includes the number "25".

You can sign the card through June 30 by making a gift of $25, $250, $250, or more at giving.virginia.edu/sorensen or by sending your check to Sorensen Institute, P.O. Box 400206, Charlottesville, VA 22904.

Shannon Valentine Named Secretary of Transportation

Congratulations to Shannon Valentine - a graduate of the Sorensen Institute Political Leaders Program in the Class 2005 - on being named to serve as Virginia's Secretary of Transportation by Governor-elect Ralph Northam (Sorensen Candidate Training Program, Class of 2007) Shannon also is a highly valued member Sorensen's Statewide Advisory Board. We're proud of you, Shannon!

Sorensen Alumni Win Elections

Yesterday, names of many Sorensen alumni appeared on ballots across the Commonwealth for elected office at all levels.  There are still some votes to be counted, but we are proud of our alumni!  While not all of our alumni were successful in seeking office yesterday, we are grateful for all of you who put your names forward and were willing to serve.  To those of you who did win last night, congratulations, and we look forward to seeing you govern with trust, civility, and respect in mind.

Sorensen mourns loss of alumna Tiffany Joslyn

The Sorensen alumni family is saddened by the news that a tragic auto accident on Interstate 95 in New England took the life of a member of the Sorensen Political Leaders Program Class of 2011 and her brother over the weekend.

The class is processing the death of Tiffany May Joslyn, 33, of Arlington. She and her younger brother, Derrick, were driving to pick up a car for her when the vehicle they were in was struck on the interstate and rolled over into oncoming traffic.

All of the Sorensen family misses Tiffany, who brought light and smiles and caring to those she touched.

Lauren Gilbert Named as Director of Programs

The Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership is delighted to announce that Lauren Gilbert will be our new Director of Programs, succeeding April Auger.

April is leaving Sorensen today after six years to become a full-time graduate student at the University of Richmond to pursue a master’s degree in nonprofit management.

“Lauren has proven herself to be an excellent Youth Program Director and has the skills and the dedication to Sorensen’s mission to lead all five of our programs in 2015 and beyond,” said Bob Gibson, Executive Director of the Sorensen Institute.

Nancy Finch's Sorensen Tree

In fall of 1994, our Sorensen class (then the Virginia Institute of Political Leadership), met in Northern Virginia at George Mason University. The highlight of the trip was visiting Senator John Warner. On Friday night, as I recall, he was waiting for a vote to come up, so he visited with our class while he waited. Senator Warner asked us to each introduce ourselves, tell where we were from and share something about ourselves.