Current Position: Virginia House of Delegate from 2010 - House District 48
From Campaign Website
Richard “Rip” Sullivan and his wife, Beth, were both raised in Northern Virginia. Before being elected to the House of Delegates in 2014, Rip served our region on numerous boards and commissions, and has extensive experience in a number of key policy areas that have directly translated to his work for his district. Last year, Rip was appointed the Democratic Caucus Campaign Chair, meaning he is leading the Democratic Party’s effort to gain seats and win back the majority in the House.
As a Delegate, Rip has fought to remove politics and partisanship from the redistricting process, encourage the growth of Virginia’s clean energy and energy efficiency sector, and make voting more accessible for all. This year he has been endorsed by the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter, NARAL Pro-Choice Virginia, Equality Virginia, the Virginia Professional Firefighters, the Virginia Farm Bureau Federations AgPAC, the LGBT+ Democrats of Virginia, Virginia AFL-CIO, Planned Parenthood, Every Voice, Northern Virginia Technology Council (NVTC) TechPAC, Humane Dominion, NOVABIZPAC, Virginia REALTORS PAC, and the Sun Gazette. Additionally, he received the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter’s “2017 Legislative Leader” award, the Virginia League of Conservation Voters’ “Legislative Hero” Award for 2017, and the Virginia Education Association’s “Solid As A Rock” Award for his 2016-2017 voting record.
Outside if his work in the General Assembly, Rip has been widely recognized as a leader in our community, as reflected in his appointments to numerous Northern Virginia boards and commissions. His appointments include the Fairfax Consumer Protection Commission, Transportation Advisory Commission, the Housing and Redevelopment Authority, and the Park Authority. Additionally, Rip served as president of the Legal Services of Northern Virginia, a non-profit institution providing legal services to low-income residents. Rip is also a former member of the Board of Governors for the Virginia Bar Association.
Rip and Beth, his high school sweetheart, have four children, all of whom attend or graduated from our public schools. They recently welcomed their first granddaughter, Alex, into the world.
Rip graduated magna cum laude from Amherst College, and received his law degree from the University of Virginia.
Birth Year: 1959
Place of Birth: New York, New York
Spouse: Elizabeth C.
Children: Corey, Ryan, Jack, and Joe
Membership & Affiliation:
District of Columbia Bar
U.S. Supreme Court Bar
U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit Bar
VSB/VBA Joint Committee on Alternative Dispute Resolution (former chair and member)
Virginia State Bar, Council (two terms), Access to Justice Committee (former member), Funding Alternatives and Awards subcommittees (former chairman), Task Force on Emergency Legal Services (former chairman), Special Committee on the Resolution of Fee Disputes (former chairman), Professionalism Course (former faculty member)
Virginia Bar Association (former member, Board of Governors), Committee on Federal Judgeships-Eastern District
Virginia Law Foundation (fellow)
Fairfax County, Park Authority (former board member), Redevelopment and Housing Authority (former vice chairman), Transportation Advisory Commission (former member), Consumer Protection Commission (former member)
Virginia Civics Commission (former member)
Budget Task Force, Dranesville (former chairman)
Fairfax Law Foundation (former member, board of directors)
Alexandria Bar Foundation (former board member)
Legal Services of Northern Virginia (former president and member)
Potomac Legal Aid Society (former member)
Homestretch, Inc. (former vice chairman, board of directors)
McLean Community Foundation (former president, board of trustees)
United States Institute of Peace, Chairman’s International Advisory Council
Sorenson Institute for Political Leadership (former member, board of directors)
George Mason University School of Law (former adjunct professor)
Education: Amherst College, MA (B.A., Magna Cum Laude, 1981)
University of Virginia School of Law (J.D., 1987)
House Leadership: Minority Caucus Campaign Chairman (2016-)
Awards: AV Rated, Virginia Super Lawyer (2006, 2014, 2016)
Virginia Business Magazine, Legal Elite (2007, 2008, 2010, 2012)
Washington D.C. Super Lawyer (2007, 2014)
Business Litigation, Super Lawyer (2008)
American Lawyers Media, Virginia’s Top Rated Lawyers (2012)
Virginia Lawyers Media, Virginia’s Leaders in the Law (2012)
Rip Sullivan and his wife Beth graduated from Langley High School in 1977. After graduating magna cum laude from Amherst College in 1981, he went on to receive his law degree from the University of Virginia in 1987. Rip and Beth have four children, all of whom attended public schools in Northern Virginia. His youngest son plays baseball for the Virginia Tech Hokies.
Sullivan has practiced law in Northern Virginia for nearly 30 years, most notably with the global law firm Reed Smith LLP, where he has represented hundreds of clients in the state and federal courts. Following his election, Sullivan left Reed Smith and joined the Arlington-based firm of Bean Kinney & Korman.
Prior to becoming a lawyer, Sullivan was a principal force in creating the United States Institute of Peace. The Institute was recently in the news as the facilitating organization for the Iraq Study Group, which made recommendations to President George W. Bush for a new strategy in Iraq. Sullivan helped ensure passage by Congress of legislation to create the Institute, which President Ronald Reagan signed into law in 1986. Sullivan currently serves on the Chairman’s Advisory Board of the Institute.
Sullivan has also served on numerous local, regional, and statewide boards and commissions. Most recently he served on the Fairfax Park Authority Board. He has also served on the Northern Virginia Transportation Advisory Commission, the Fairfax Housing and Redevelopment Authority, the Fairfax Consumer Protection Commission, the Dranesville Budget Taskforce, and on the Virginia Commission for Civics Education. Sullivan is also the former president of Northern Virginia Legal Services, an organization that provides free counsel to low-income residents. Sullivan also serves on the Advisory Board of the University of Virginia’s Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership.
Agriculture Chesapeake and Natural Resources
Agriculture Chesapeake and Natural Resources – Subcommittee #2
Finance – Subcommittee #2
I support raising the minimum and tipped wages, and support legislation to increase them here in Virginia. We also must acknowledge the thousands of Virginians who are currently seeking employment. I oppose efforts to roll back the social safety net that is so important to unemployed Virginians searching for work.
We can grow our economy by expanding workforce training programs, increasing access to capital for small businesses, and creating incentives for small business development.
Great teachers are the key to our children’s success, which is why we must ensure that our teachers are paid competitive salaries that reflect our deep appreciation to these outstanding public servants. Too often our teachers are forced to “teach to the test,” which is why I strongly support the SOL reforms that were passed in the House of Delegates last year (HB930).
I oppose offshore drilling, and instead believe we should be increasing our investments in renewable energies. For example, Virginia has an incredible amount of untapped wind energy waiting to be harnessed. I support efforts to increase our renewable portfolio standard and incentives for meeting these goals, as well as mandatory energy efficiency standards for investor-owned electric utilities. Additionally, I support tax credits for individuals and businesses that install solar panels or small wind systems.
As a parent with children who attended our public schools and a son at Virginia Tech, this is an issue particularly important to me. I support a ban on assault weapons, magazine restrictions, and the reinstatement of “one-gun-a-month” in Virginia.
These gun control measures have the potential to save lives. Just as importantly, our mental health system must be re-evaluated to prevent future tragedies from occurring.
I strongly support Medicaid Expansion in Virginia to cover more than 400,000 uninsured Virginians. I was disappointed to see Speaker Howell rule the Governor’s veto of the Stanley Amendment out of order. It’s clear that this fight is not yet over – I am confident that Virginia can achieve Medicaid Expansion, and willl be steadfast in my support for this important program.
I strongly support the rights of loving couples all across our great Commonwealth. I joined thousands of Virginians in celebrating back in February when a federal judge struck down Virginia’s constitutional amendment on marriage. In addition to marriage equality, I support efforts to prevent workplace discrimination for LGBTQ and transgender Virginians.
I have served on the Fairfax Transportation Advisory Commission, and am very familiar with our transit issues here in Northern Virginia. I believe paving more roads is not the long-term solution to our transportation problems. I was excited to see Metro’s Silver Line open recently, and will seek out ways in the General Assembly to incentivize use of public transportation and expand mass-transit opportunities.
It’s simple. A woman’s decisions regarding her reproductive health should be left between her and her doctor, and government has no business interfering in such a private matter. I oppose all measures that would limit reproductive freedom, and will work to expand health care access and coverage to thousands of women by expanding Medicaid in Virginia.