Victoria Ross, Fairfax County Reporter for The Connection Newspapers, has a diverse media background as a journalist, editor, freelance writer and media spokesperson for county government.
Victoria covers Fairfax County government as well as county-related matters in the Virginia legislature, including politics, transportation, housing, education and county services. She has developed and written several special editions and series, including award-winning in-depth coverage of homelessness in Fairfax County and the impact of immigration and diversity in the county. During the 2012 elections, she covered President Barack Obama’s rallies in Fairfax County, as well as the president’s second inauguration. She also covered several other high-profile races, including U.S. Senator Tim Kaine’s race against former Virginia governor and U.S. Senator George Allen.
Her extensive coverage of homelessness in Fairfax County helped earn The Connection the prestigious 2011 Virginia Press Association Award for Journalistic Integrity and Community Service. Other awards given for Victoria’s work include the Fairfax County Media Partnership Award in May, 2012, and Virginia Press Awards for In-Depth Or Investigative Reporting for 2011 (2nd and 3rd place) and 2012 (1st place) and for Multimedia Feature Report (2011, 1st place).
A magna cum laude graduate of James Madison University and The University of Virginia, she started her journalism career in Dayton, Ohio where she was named the youngest-ever editor-in-chief of Times Publications, a chain of community and daily newspapers. As a reporter and editor of The Kettering-Oakwood Times and The Centreville-Bellbrook Times, she won several first-place Ohio Newspaper Association Awards for investigative reporting, business reporting and feature writing.
In 1994, she and her husband moved to Charlotte, where she became the media spokesperson for The Fighting Back Project, a nationally-recognized anti-drug program, co-funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Mecklenburg County.
She worked closely with the board’s co-chairs — Franklin McCain, one of the Greensboro Four who participated in the Woolworth sit-ins during the Civil Rights movement, and Cullie Tarleton, broadcasting executive and North Carolina State Representative — to raise the community profile of the program. That same year, she was appointed by the Board of County Commissioners to serve on Charlotte’s Diversity Task Force. In 1997, she became communications director for Mecklenburg County government, where she worked until moving to Montgomery County, Maryland, in 2003.
While freelancing for several local publications, she started a Diversity Book & Film Club that was the subject of a 2006 feature story The Washington Post. Victoria was born in Baltimore and raised in Fairfax County. She currently lives in Vienna with her husband, two children and two amazing dogs.
Senator Kaine Hosts Interfaith Forum
Senator Tim Kaine spends last day before VP pick showing why Virginia matters.
No one knew it at the time, but Sen. Timothy M. Kaine’s (D-Va.) public appearances moderating roundtables in Northern Virginia last Thursday, July 21 would be his last day of relative political anonymity before being catapulted to political prominence 24 hours later as Hillary Clinton’s pick for her Vice-Presidential running mate.
Sarvis: Warner-Gillespie Debate ‘Disappointing’
Libertarian candidate says chamber’s decision to include only major-party candidates in U.S. Senate debate a “disservice” to voters.
After a full day of campaigning at Fort Belvoir on Friday, Oct. 11, Robert Sarvis talked about his campaign for U.S. Senate, and his disappointment in not being invited to participate in Tuesday’s U.S. Senate Debate — a major televised debate hosted by The Fairfax Chamber at Capitol One’s convention center in McLean. “The Fairfax Chamber informed us that it was nothing other than ‘tradition’ to only invite major party candidates,” Sarvis said. “But this was after we formally requested an invitation, noted that over 145,000 Virginians voted for Robert Sarvis for governor in 2013, and sent them a petition signed by over 1,000 Virginians in support of a three-candidate debate.”
Warner, Gillespie Clash in U.S. Senate Debate
Stark distinctions on same-sex marriage, immigration, abortion and healthcare.
In front of an audience of Northern Virginia business leaders, U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-Va.) and Republican challenger Ed Gillespie honed their attacks on each other during a sharp, wide-ranging debate Tuesday evening, Oct. 7.
Heads Up Football Flourishing in Fairfax County
Program reduces concussion risk by teaching players to take the “head” out of tackling.
It wasn’t that long ago when youth football coaches believed a player’s toughness was measured by his ability to play through the pain. Concussions and other serious injuries were just “part of the game.”
You Can Run, But You Can’t Win?
Fairfax County fires attorney for winning city council seat.
Like many lifelong City of Fairfax residents, Nancy Fry Loftus is proud of her hometown’s character and charm — a Norman Rockwell postcard of small-town life in the heart of an increasingly urban, diverse and bustling region.
What’s Offensive about Redskins Pride?
Absolutely nothing, if you’re state Sen. Chap Petersen.
A lifelong Redskins fan, Fairfax state Sen. Chap Petersen (D-34) has had it up to here with all the talk about the need to change the name of his beloved football team. He vented his frustration and indignation on his blog — Ox Road South — but said he was leery of tackling what he deemed the forces of political correctness in the "War Against the Redskins" until June 18, when the Federal Patent Office blocked the team’s Redskins trademarks, declaring that the name was "disparaging" to Native Americans at the time the trademarks were registered — as far back as 1967. That action pushed Petersen off the sidelines to lead an offensive attack.
Meals Tax: Tasty or Revolting?
Supervisors digest task force’s final report on hot-button issue.
After hours of simmering debate, the Meals Tax Referendum Task Force’s presentation to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Tuesday was a mere amuse-bouche, whetting the appetite of board the for the group’s 170-page multi-course written report.
Eat. Drink. Pay?
Fairfax County task force debates voters’ appetite for another meals tax referendum.
It has been 22 years since Fairfax County asked voters to approve a tax on restaurant meals, an issue that ignited protests, caused deep divisions among community leaders and threatened to melt down several political careers. The reverberations of that epic failure — what many consider the third rail of county politics — continue to echo in the ears of county politicians.
Mr. Horejsi Goes to Richmond
In the fight for social justice with patience and persistence.
Every year, dozens of high-priced lobbyists descend on Virginia’s state capitol.
Board Advertises Higher Tax Rate
Rate gives board flexibility, options in determining final budget.
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors voted 8-2 Tuesday to advertise a higher real estate tax rate that could add about $100 to annual tax bills, which will be on top of the $332 county homeowners will see this year as a result of higher real estate assessments. Setting the advertised tax rate formally begins the two-month public process to adopt the Fiscal Year 2015 budget, and the rate represents the maximum potential tax rate for FY2015.