Current Position: Security Expert, retired USAF
Candidate: 2019 State Delegate
Source: Campaign page
Meet Colonel Bill Drennan
Bill Drennan, an Air Force combat veteran and former presidential military aide to President Ronald Reagan, is running for Virginia’s District 87 House of Delegates seat.
Bill and his wife Shiu Ying have lived in South Riding for 12 years. They have two sons, both of whom live in District 87, and one grandson who is a fourth-grader in a “simply outstanding public elementary school,” where Drennan has been a volunteer in the WatchDOGS program for the last five years.
Bill Drennan’s Story
Following graduation from the US Air Force Academy with a commission as a second lieutenant, Bill attended pilot training in Texas and spent five years in Southeast Asia flying combat missions in Vietnam.
Bill flew in support of every major campaign from the South Vietnamese invasion of Laos, through the North Vietnamese Easter Offensive, to the evacuation of Saigon.
In addition, Bill flew into Hanoi to assist in the release of American POWs following the signing of the Paris Peace Accords.
Air Force Senior Official
Bill returned to the United States and served as an instructor and flight commander at the USAF Officer Training School and later as the assistant executive officer in the Air Force Military Training Headquarters in Texas.
In 1979 Bill was transferred to the Pentagon, working in Air Force senior officer personnel matters.
Military Aide to President Reagan
In 1981 Bill was selected as President Reagan’s first Air Force Aide. He worked daily with the President, the White House senior staff, and executive branch departments and agencies, especially the Department of Defense.
As a military aide, Bill was responsible for the Presidential Emergency Satchel (the “Nuclear Football”). Other duties included planning and overseeing all aspects of the extensive military support for the President, serving as a liaison between the White House Military Office, DoD, and the uniformed services, and coordinating emergency “continuity of government” plans with the US Secret Service and other concerned agencies.
Korea Security Expert and War College Professor
After successful tours as a squadron commander and deputy commander for operations in the Air Force Pilot Training Program, Bill attended the National War College and was then posted to Seoul with US Forces Korea. He spent a year as a military fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York City and then returned to the National War College as a faculty member and department chair.
Bill closed out his military career as a senior military fellow at the Institute for National Strategic Studies at the National Defense University, working on security issues on the Korean peninsula and Northeast Asia.
Worked on Security Issues in the Private Sector
After leaving active duty, Bill joined the United States Institute of Peace, where he continued working on Korea security issues for the next six years.
He then worked for two different start-ups in Washington DC that specialized in open-source intelligence information, primarily for US government agencies.
Proud Husband, Father, and Grandfather
Bill met and married his wife, Shiu Ying, while he was stationed in Taiwan. She is a proud naturalized US citizen. They have been married for 45 years and have two sons and one grandson, whom they have helped raise since he was an infant.
Bill is running for the House of Delegates because he wants to create a better world for his grandson and his grandson’s generation.
Source: Campaign page
Maintaining Loudoun and Prince William counties’ strong education systems is Bill’s top priority. We must focus on education, not indoctrination. This past legislative session, the General Assembly provided Virginians a tax return and passed a budget with a 5% wage increase for teachers. The safety of our students and teachers is also essential. Bill will partner with law enforcement and school officials to hire retired police and military veterans as school resource officers. Every public school in Loudoun and Prince William should have dedicated and trained security personnel so that our children can thrive in a safe school environment.
America’s economic success is founded on ingenuity and innovation – the qualities that have powered District 87’s thriving economy. Bill will oppose government regulations that hinder the entrepreneurial spirit. We need to foster and maintain a business climate attractive to enterprises large and small. We must not adopt government-mandated minimum wage and other wasteful “progressive’ experiments to chock our economic future. History has repeatedly shown the negative outcomes of these unrealistic and unsustainable programs.
Taxes and Spending
The state budget continuously grows due to ever-expanding government programs. Bill will work to cut taxes by eliminating wasteful spending. We must promote transparency within all state programs to ensure that taxpayers are getting their money’s worth. A tax environment that fosters innovation will allow District 87 to continue to be a place where residents are proud to live, work, and raise a family.
As an Air Force pilot, combat veteran and former presidential military aide, Bill understands the importance of supporting the nearly 800,000 veterans who call Virginia home. It is our responsibility to ease their return home from battle. On average, 22 U.S. veterans commit suicide a day. This is a national emergency. Increasing veteran access to academic scholarships and vocational training will provide Virginia’s veterans with the skills to succeed in civilian life. It is time for Virginia to honor those who have fought for our freedom. Veterans have kept their end of the bargain — we must keep ours.
Easing traffic congestion is fundamental to the success of District 87 and all of Northern Virginia. Taxpayers funded the construction of area toll roads — they should not be gouged with punishing tolls to use those same roads. $47 for a one-way trip on I-66 just to get to work is — literally — highway robbery. Bill will work with officials at the local and state levels to ease the area’s traffic trauma.
Sanctity of Life
Richmond recently became the focus of nationwide condemnation for proposed legislation that would have eliminated restrictions on third-trimester abortions and legalized infanticide – also known as “post-birth abortions.” Unlike some of our elected leaders, Bill understands that life begins at conception. He will be a strong voice for a society that cherishes and protects the most vulnerable among us.
Bill opposes red-flag laws that are designed to strip citizens of their unalienable rights. The right to keep and bear arms is foundational to the Constitution and to uphold liberty under law. Bill is committed to protecting the 2nd Amendment while also curtailing the unlawful use or purchase of weapons. As your next Delegate, Bill will uphold your constitutional rights and insist that judicial nominees are committed to doing the same.