CASA in Action Endorses Local and State Candidates in Virginia


Friday, August 16, 2019

CONTACT: Diana Castaneda, [email protected], (240) 515-5561

Falls Church, VA – CASA in Action, the region’s largest pro-immigrant electoral organization, is pleased to announce its endorsement of twenty-seven candidates for the Virginia general election on November 5, 2019. CASA in Action board interviewed and voted in favor of candidates that support a pro-immigrant agenda that benefits working families.

“This is the time for voters in Virginia to cast our ballots, raise our voices, and elect legislators – state and local – that share our values. These candidates are champions committed to fight for our working families and immigrant community,” said Luis Aguilar, Virginia Director of CASA in Action.

Among the many candidates that inspired CASA in Action members to get involved:

– A champion for workers’ rights, Neri Canahui served as President of his Carpenters Local Union and on the Executive Board of the Northern Virginia Labor Federation. Neri has fought to raise the minimum wage and expand collective bargaining rights.

– A member of the Northern Virginia Electric Cooperative Board, Ann Wheeler decided to turn the Prince William Board of Supervisors blue this November and fight for progressive policies.

– As a first-generation Muslim immigrant, Raheel Sheikh advocated to end the Muslim Ban and racial profiling in Prince William County. His goal is to make Prince William County more inclusive where people of all backgrounds and beliefs are welcome.

– Hala Ayala, is a single mother of two and the founder and former president of the Prince William County chapter of the National Organization for Women. Hala has fought for raising the minimum wage and equal pay.

– A fierce advocate who has dedicated his life to social justice, Joshua Cole is a progressive activist who will fight against the misapplication of justice in our diverse community. He champions a reform to our criminal justice system.

– As an attorney who represents children, Karen Keys Gamarra is determined to remove the barriers in our educational system that disparately impact students of color.

– Endorsed by our members for his successful primary win, Josh King will work to end the discriminatory 287(g) program in Prince William County that deputizes local law enforcement officers to act as agents of ICE.

“This Fall, we are not only going to sweep the Virginia General Assembly, we are also going to bring historic wins through our amazing local candidates,” said Mr. Aguilar. “Imagine what Prince William County finally post-Corey Stewart will become. Our communities of color, working together, have built a transformation in Virginia!”

CASA in Action’s Board of Directors are elected leaders representing our regional councils across CASA in Action’s three states. The Board’s endorsement decisions are supported by our Leadership Council – composed of two leaders elected from each of our organizing committees.

Together these community members interview candidates, review their records, and finalize recommendations and decisions in favor of candidates who support a progressive and pro-immigrant agenda.

“Now more than ever these coming elections are important for our immigrant community. This year we will fight to elect candidates that will provide social and economic opportunities to help all Virginians,” said Delia Escobar, member of CASA in Action’s Board of Directors representing Prince William County. “The candidates we endorsed have a longstanding history of activism and are fearless champions in the fight for equity and justice.”

Together with candidates previously endorsed because of primary challenges, CASA in Action Endorsements in Virginia:

For Fairfax County

Steve Descano for Fairfax County Commonwealth’s Attorney

Jeffrey McKay for Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Chair

James Walkinshaw for Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Braddock District

John Foust for Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Dranesville District

Walter Alcorn for Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Hunter Mill District

Rodney Lusk for Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Lee District

Penny Gross for Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Mason District

Dalia Palchik for Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Providence District

Linda Sperling for Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Springfield District

Karen Keys Gamarra for Fairfax County Schoolboard

Abrar Omeish for Fairfax County Schoolboard

Rachna Sizemore for Fairfax County Schoolboard

Karl Frisch for Providence District Schoolboard

Laura Jane Cohen for Springfield District Schoolboard

Melanie Meren for Hunter Mill District Schoolboard

Ricardy Anderson for Mason District Schoolboard

For Prince William County

Amy Ashworth for Prince William County & City of Manassas Commonwealth’s Attorney

Josh King for Prince William County Sheriff

Ann Wheeler for Prince William County Board of Supervisors, Chair

Maggie Hansford for Prince William County Board of Supervisors, Brentsville District

Raheel Sheikh for Prince William County Board of Supervisors, Coles District

Danny Dudenfrank for Prince William County Board of Supervisors, Gainesville District

Victor Angry for Prince William County Board of Supervisors, Neabsco District

Kenny Boddye for Prince William County Board of Supervisors, Occoquan District

Andrea Bailey for Prince William County Board of Supervisors, Potomac District

Margaret Franklin for Prince William County Board of Supervisors, Woodbridge District

Lisa Zargarpur for Prince William County Schoolboard

For Loudoun County

Buta Biberaj for Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney

Justin Hannah for Loudoun County Sheriff

Phyllis Randall for Loudoun County Board of Supervisors, Chair

Juli Briskman for Loudoun County Board of Supervisors, Algonkian District

Koran Saines for Loudoun County Board of Supervisors, Sterling District

For Arlington & Falls Church

Parisa Dehghani-Tafti for Arlington & Falls Church Commonwealth’s Attorney

House of Delegates and State Senate

Ghazala Hashmi for Senate Delegate District 10

John Bell for Senate Delegate District 13

Qasim Rashid for Senate Delegate District 28

Jennifer Foy Carroll for House Delegate District 2

Danica Roem for House Delegate District 13

Josh Cole for House Delegate District 28

Elizabeth Guzman for House Delegate District 31

Dan Helmer for House Delegate District 40

Kathy Tran for House Delegate District 42

Lee Carter for House Delegate District 50

Hala Ayala for House Delegate District 51

Luke Torian for House Delegate District 52

Neri Canahui for House Delegate District 54

Karrie Delaney for House Delegate District 67

Suhas Subramanyam for House Delegate District 87

Jess Foster for House Delegate District 88


With more than 100,000+ lifetime members, CASA in Action is the largest electoral organization fighting for immigrant rights in the Mid-Atlantic region. For more information, please visit Follow us @CASAinAction