Two Democrats are vying for their party’s nomination on June 11 in state Senate District 11, with the winner set to challenge first-term Republican incumbent Amanda Chase on Nov. 5.
Chase defeated incumbent Stephen Martin and challenger Barry Moore in the Grand Old Party’s primary in 2015 and defeated Democrat Wayne Powell in the 2015 general election, 63 to 36 percent.
Now, Powell is running again but is being challenged by Amanda Pohl, who is the data systems and evaluation coordinator for the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance, 1118 W. Main St. in Richmond.
Powell – who lost to Republican U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor, 58 to 41 percent, in 2012 – is an immigration, personal injury and workers compensation attorney at Powell Law Group in Midlothian.
Powell, who did not respond to email and phone messages for this story, served 30 years in the U.S. Army as an intelligence officer, according to his website.
“My mission in life is to make it all better,” Powell said in a website video. He is a husband, father of two and grandfather of four.
Among a number of issues listed on his website are: environment, gun violence protection and campaign finance reform.
He would like to reduce dependence on fossil fuels.
In addition, “Wayne doesn’t believe hard working Virginians should be taxed or be forced to watch their utility rates soar to pay for Dominion’s irresponsible storage of coal ash that has resulted in arsenic and other harmful chemicals seeping into our groundwater,” his website states.
He favors universal background checks for gun purchases and “restrictions on weapons built for the battlefield” and supports “full transparency of all campaign contributions” and said he will not accept donations from corporate political action committees.
Pohl was born in Amelia County, which, along with Colonial Heights and most of Chesterfield County, is in SD 11.
She is married and has two children.
“I have been an advocate for others most of my life,” Pohl said in an email.
“I want to use that experience to bring representation to this district that better reflects the values of our citizens and help to create real, positive change in areas like healthcare, education, and infrastructure where we need it most.”
Her top three issues are: affordable healthcare, fully-funded public schools and green energy.
“Affordable access to healthcare and needed prescriptions is an issue that every Virginian faces,” she said. “We have to do better to ensure reliable, quality access for everyone.”
“We also need practical solutions to our energy and climate crisis,” Pohl said. “We can’t keep dealing with only the symptoms like repeated flooding without addressing the underlying problem. Green energy investment is one that will help decrease our reliance on oil and bring good-paying jobs…”
Pohl said she has a “strong and growing grassroots network … that will make my campaign a force to be reckoned with come November.”
The candidates are scheduled to speak at a forum from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, May 16, at the Al Madina School of Richmond, a private Islamic school at 10700 Academy Drive in Midlothian.