It’s been six months after the largest national protest in United States history. The Women’s March made big promises. Now, in Virginia, it turns out lots of women are keeping those promises and running for office. During the primary, 51 women—a record number—ran for seats in Virginia’s House of Delegates. Two years ago, 26 women ran.
“Right after, I felt I needed to do more,” said Hala Ayala, a single mother of two and cyber security specialist running for a delegate seat representing an area including Prince William’s County. “At the march you could stare into one another’s eyes and see where they’ve been. It was almost intolerable,” said Ayala, who’s been a volunteer and community organizer but never run for office. Like Ayala, a number of the women running for the first time are minorities.
Hala Ayala, candidate for the 51st District of the House of Delegates, has earned the endorsements of women’s advocacy groups throughout Virginia and beyond, as well as a number of state and local elected officials, including state Sen. Jennifer Wexton and former state Sen. Emilie Miller. “I am honored to have the support of so many champions of Virginia women and working families,” said Hala Ayala. “These elected officials and groups have been instrumental in the effort to fight for positive change and gender equality. I look forward to continuing our work together in Richmond.”
Today, EMILY’s List endorsed Hala Ayala for the 51st District in Virginia’s House of Delegates. Ayala founded and was president of the Prince William County chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW). She served as vice president of Virginia NOW and is a member of Governor Terry McAuliffe’s Council on Women.
Congressman Gerry Connolly endorsed Hala Ayala today in her bid for the 51st District seat in the Virginia House of Delegates, citing her long history of work for Democratic causes in the Commonwealth. Ayala is the former president and founder of the Prince William County chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW), vice president of Virginia NOW and serves on Governor Terry McAuliffe’s Council on Women.
Lake Ridge resident Hala Ayala has been active in the local political scene for a while. She volunteered for the Obama campaign in 2012 and re-launched Prince William County’s dormant NOW chapter, becoming its president in 2014. Now, Ayala says she’s ready to take it to the next level. The 43-year-old mother of two launched a campaign last week for the 51st District state delegate’s seat, currently held by Del. Rich Anderson, a Republican serving in his fourth term.