VA BLOC Attends Summit on Gun Violence

Representatives from VA BLOC were able to attend a Community Leaders Summit on Gun Violence on Monday.  We are committed to being a part of the solution, helping to make our neighborhoods safer!

Here is Delegate Price’s Press Release:

Community Leaders Attend Summit on Gun Violence
November 21, 2016
Press Release
Contact: Tempestt Boone, 757-266-5935

NEWPORT NEWS, VA – On Monday evening, more than 30 community leaders met to discuss the alarming recent uptick in gun violence in the city.  As of that evening, Newport News had had 23 murders and more than 100 incidents involving guns.  The group was called together by Delegate Marcia “Cia” Price (95th District) in an effort to receive updates from law enforcement and City Officials to clarify some misconceptions about the situation.  The goals were also to collaborate as a group on short and long term solutions, and assess current resources and strategies and some of the voids needing to be addressed.

Newport News Mayor McKinley Price attended the summit and said, “We needed to come together to find out what is happening, why it is happening, and what is being done.  By discussing our current efforts, we will be able to continue our work in a more collaborative way. We also look forward to talking more broadly with our citizens for their support and participation in these initiatives.”

The summit included elected officials, city and school officials, business leaders, clergy, healthcare providers, non-profits, and concerned citizens. About the group, Delegate Price stated, “This is certainly not an exhaustive list of those working in our community to make our neighborhoods safer.  But this group is a great cross section of our community leaders from various facets of our city. We each have a role to play.”

The group has committed to working together within the comprehensive strategy proposed in the Youth PROMISE Act and the process will be led by Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-3), the champion of that legislation. The next meeting will be in December.

Delegate Price summarized the meeting by saying, “We as leaders needed to commit to solutions that will focus on prevention, intervention, enforcement, and reentry.  Our city is more than our violence.  We care about each of our citizens and want them to feel safe and have a great quality of life.  We want each of our children to be able to live out their dreams.  We want our city to thrive, together.  In order for that to happen, we must reclaim our communities from the reality of gun violence.”



Newport News Community Leaders Present:
Mayor McKinley Price, DDS
James Bourey, City Manager
Chief Richard Myers, Newport News Police Department
Diane Kaufman, Regional Director for Sen. Tim Kaine
Demontre’ Boone, Senior Legislative Assistant for Congressman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott
Senator Mamie Locke, 2nd District
Delegate T. Monty Mason, 93rd District and Senator-Elect 1st District
Delegate David Yancey, 94th District
Delegate Marcia Price, 95th District
Delegate-Elect Michael Mullin, 93rd District
Bert Bateman, City Council
Commonwealth’s Attorney Howard Gwynn
Carlton Ashby, Newport News School Board
Shelly Simonds, Newport News School Board
Assistant Chief Stacey Kelly, Newport News Police Department
Major Robert Coleman, Sheriff’s Office
Shameka Gerald, Principal of Heritage High School
William Downey, President & CEO of Riverside Health System
Tom Cosgrove, Newport News Shipbuilding
Dr. Ashby Kilgore, Superintendent of NNPS
Brian Nichols, Chief Academic Officer of NNPS
Rev. Kevin Swann, Pastor of Ivy Baptist Church
Alvean Lyons, Virginia Unity Project
Rev. Joe Baker, Pastor of Refuge Nation Church
Rev. Ray Johnson, Pastor of Calvary Revival Church
Rev. Dwayne Seals, Pastor of The Messiah Center
Marc Rodgers, Concerned Citizen
Dr. Eric Claville, 1st Vice President of NAACP Newport News Branch
Tempestt Boone, Legislative Assistant to Delegate Price
Darius Swift, VA BLOC Community Organizer
Alexandria Wheeler, VA BLOC Community Organizer
Mike Kuhns, CEO of VA Peninsula Chamber of Commerce
Valerie Price, The GET UP Project and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
John Clark, Chief of Security for Newport News Shipbuilding


  1. I would like to get information on how I can be apart of this leadership summit and/or other similar community meetings as a concerned community member. Any information would be greatly appreciated.


    • Hi Kelli! Thank you for your comment. This particular group was called together by Delegate Price’s office. VA BLOC was invited to the table as a non-profit working in communities. One of the groups we know about is the NNPD C.R.I.M.E. Initiative groups – check them out here:

      We also invite you to our next meeting and to join the Criminal Justice Reform group as prevention of gun violence is one of their target areas. You can find out more here:

      Let us know if you need any further information!


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