Thursday, September 12, 2019

City of Richmond designated a Green and Healthy Homes Initiative site

The City of Richmond was recently designated a Green and Healthy Homes Initiative (GHHI) site. 

Starting two years ago, representatives from the Richmond City Health District and the City of Richmond collaborated with numerous local community service providers to align, intertwine, and coordinate their programs with the goal of producing healthier, more energy-efficient housing, higher-quality green jobs, and improved health and social outcomes for families. Local leaders committed to this effort because they recognized it was an effective way to improve how the community addressed the connection between health and housing.

As part of the designation process, the stakeholders signed onto a compact to continue this important work. Signatories include: Director of the Richmond City and Henrico County Health Districts Dr. Danny Avula, Mayor Levar Stoney, KC Bleile of Viridiant, Lee Householder of project:HOMES, Malcolm Jones of Rebuilding Together Richmond, Ruth Ann Norton of Green & Healthy Homes Initiative and Amy Strite of Family Lifeline. These stakeholders intend to pursue several goals:
  • Work collaboratively to advance this initiative on behalf of the families we serve;
  • Coordinate housing intervention efforts and remove barriers to integration among city and state agencies and private partner stakeholders;
  • Conduct comprehensive housing assessments and interventions, integrating the areas of lead hazard reduction, Healthy Homes, weatherization, energy efficiency, and related work;
  • Align programs, braid funds, and coordinate agencies to the greatest extent feasible and allowed by law or regulation;
  • Support the establishment of enhanced national, state and local housing standards that implement a holistic housing approach; and
  • Break down barriers to full employment for low-income residents and promote equity through training and employment efforts.
“I am thrilled Richmond has been designated a GHHI site,” said Mayor Levar Stoney. “Healthy homes are vital to improving outcomes for Richmond’s families. This collaborative approach to raising housing standards lays the foundation for a better quality of life for all of our residents.”
Dr. Danny Avula, Director of the Richmond City and Henrico County Health Department, noted, “The GHHI designation process was an important opportunity to gather local leaders at the intersection of health and housing. We are excited to highlight efforts like this, where the region can accomplish more by acting collectively.”
“We are delighted to welcome Richmond into the GHHI network. Richmond is doing the work and has the vision to work upstream to positively move the Social Determinants of Health for its community through healthier housing.  This Compact signifies this great work and leadership of GHHI-Richmond,” says Ruth Ann Norton, President and CEO of the Green & Healthy Homes Initiative.
The GHHI process has already shown impressive results by strengthening or starting several impactful initiatives:
  • Culture of Health Richmond – The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation awarded the City of Richmond with the 2017 Culture of Health Prize. Partners since founded Culture of Health Richmond “to shed light on key health challenges, celebrate the innovation and courage of leaders who are bringing real change to life, and shift minds and hearts in Richmond toward a shared belief that every person deserves good health, meaningful choices, and respect.”
  • RVA Lead-Based Paint Hazard Control (LBPHC) Program – A HUD-funded 3-year program to control health hazards caused by lead based paint in homes and apartments built before 1978 where children under 6 or pregnant women reside. The City of Richmond administers this program in partnership with the Richmond City Health District’s Lead-Safe and Healthy Home Initiative and local non-profit project:Homes.
  • RVA Childhood Asthma Collaborative – An effort between community-based programs, Richmond City and Henrico Health Districts, Bon Secours Mercy Health, HCA Virginia Health System, and VCU Health System focused on improving lifestyle and healthcare outcomes for local children who have asthma.

For more information on Richmond’s involvement in the Green and Healthy Homes Initiative, please contact:


Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Mayor Stoney announces new Director of Department of Justice Services

Mayor Levar M. Stoney announced today the appointment of Dawn Barber as the Director of the City of Richmond Department of Justice Services.

A former assistant police chief for the City of Newport News, Barber brings more than 31 years of professional experience in justice services and law enforcement to the City of Richmond Department of Justice Services.  Most recently, Barber served as the Director of Juvenile Services for the City of Newport News. In addition to her experience in city government, she serves as a Lieutenant Commander in the United States Navy Reserves.

In her new role, Barber will oversee the city’s services for adults facing potential incarceration and youth who are either at risk of involvement in the juvenile justice system or who have been formally processed by the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court. These services include prevention and diversion efforts, in-home services, monitoring and surveillance, secure confinement, counseling and case management. Barber will report directly to Reginald E. Gordon, DCAO for Human Services.

“The Department of Justice Services has the challenging task of supporting Richmonders at a critical inflection point in their lives,” said Mayor Stoney. “Dawn’s experience in both public safety and justice services programming gives her the right balance of discipline and compassion needed for the job.”

Barber obtained a Bachelor of Science in Governmental Administration and Criminal Justice Administration from Christopher Newport University. She is also a certified PREA Auditor through the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance. 

“I am both humbled and excited to be selected to serve as the Director of Justice Services. I look forward to the opportunity to contribute to and partner with the other city agencies and the community at-large to ensure the department provides the highest level of service to the citizens of Richmond,” said Barber.


Community Input Requested for Richmond 300, the City’s Master Plan Update

The City of Richmond’s Department of Planning and Development Review (PDR) seeks to once again engage the Richmond community in the development of the updated city master plan.

Richmond 300: A Guide for Growth, the city’s new master plan, is entering the next community engagement stage of development. The plan’s aim is to establish a 20-year vision for the city’s growth, factoring in extensive community input. 

Last fall, residents of Richmond shared their vision for the future of the city. Now, Richmonders can see and provide feedback on how their ideas have been incorporated into a vision for the city in 2037, the component goals necessary to create that vision and the draft land uses, transportation connections and strategies needed to achieve those goals.

From September 23 to November 3, community members can provide their thoughts at their convenience via any of the following four methods:

Attend a Richmond 300 Forum: Each forum will include a 30-minute presentation and 60 minutes of questions and answers. The information presented in each forum will be identical and children are welcome to attend. Spanish-language translators will also be available. If participants have a disability and require accommodation in order to fully participate in the forum, please email by September 23 to arrange accommodations. 

Stop by a Richmond 300 Sharing Session: Visit during a two-hour window for informal conversations with planners at community spots like libraries, coffee shops and more. See for a full schedule.
Invite Richmond 300 to give a talk at your meeting: Email to request a talk. We will only need 5 minutes on your agenda. We would like your meeting to have at least 15 attendees and occur sometime between September 23 and November 3.
Provide your thoughts online at any time of day: An online survey and interactive maps will be live from September 23 to November 3 at
For more information about the master plan update, please visit 


Statement by Mayor Levar M. Stoney on passage of Resolution No. 2019-R028, to support the prohibition of conversion therapy practices

“A city that values diversity, equity and inclusivity can’t stay silent about a barbaric and abusive practice that targets LGBTQ+ youth.

“I am proud that members of Richmond’s City Council joined me in opposing the inhumane and regressive practice of conversion therapy and affirming the sexual orientation and identities of all Richmonders.”