Minutes of the Special Meeting of September 22, 2020

Call to Order

The meeting was called to order by chairperson Sharon Eaton at 6:37pm. Ms. Eaton turned the proceedings over to Robert Barclay.


Purpose of Meeting

Robert Barclay explained the endorsement process and clarified the difference between an endorsement and a nomination. He noted that the mayoral race is a non-partisan race, but an organization can still make endorsements in such races.

Mr. Barclay explained that the meeting was called to order to address allegations that the committee’s endorsed candidate for mayor of Suffolk had, previously endorsed the Republican candidate for Virginia House of Delegates district 76 at a Saratoga Civic League meeting. Mr. Barclay said this information, if true and had been known at the time of the decision to endorse, would likely have affected that decision.


Robert Barclay explained that Vanessa Harris had been invited to speak at the beginning of the meeting, but Ms. Harris asked that questions be asked first. Mr. Barclay asked Ms. Harris if she supported Chris Jones against the Democratic nominee in the last elections.

Vanessa Harris replied, "Absolutely Not".

Mr. Barclay also asked if any statements were made in support of either candidate, and Ms. Harris explained that both candidates were invited to speak.

Beverly Outlaw asked if the allegation was made by one or more people, and if anyone who made the allegation was present

Clinton Jenkins answered that he was informed by Greg McLemore that a friend of Vanessa Harris said that she agreed to support Chris Jones in exchange for a personal favor. But Mr. Jenkins said that Mr. McLemore no longer wanted to get involved, and that Mr. McLemore changed his story.

Sharon Eaton said that since the person making the allegation is not coming forward, we let the current endorsement stand. Ms. Eaton apologized to Ms. Harris.


Clinton Jenkins motioned to adjourn the meeting. The meeting was adjourned at 6:49