Current Position: State Delegate for District 36 since 1978
Ken Plum was first elected Delegate for the 36th District in 1978. The 36th District includes parts of Fairfax County.
Delegate Plum serves as Chair of the Agriculture, Chesapeake, and Natural Resources Committee and is a member of the Communications, Technology and Innovation, Appropriations, and Public Safety committees. Delegate Plum is retired teacher and school administrator and is focuses full-time focus on being a Delegate.
The interview below was conducted by Nader Momtaz in Ken Plum’s Pocahontas Building office in Richmond, VA on Jan. 17, 2020. Original interview recording has not been edited in any way.
– December 23, 2020
Last Sunday evening Confederate General Robert E. Lee lost his position of representing the Commonwealth as part of the Statuary Hall Collection at the United States Capitol. A copy of a statue of General Lee by sculptor Edward Valentine had been standing in the Capitol since 1909 most recently in the Crypt where a statue representing each of the thirteen original states stood. General Lee’s statue was carted off just as statues of him have been taken down across the state including the huge equestrian statue of him that will be taken down from Monument Avenue in Richmond as soon as lawsuits about it are resolved.
The other statue representing Virginia in the Capitol Statuary Collection is a copy of Houdon’s statue that stands in the Rotunda of the State Capitol in Richmond of the Father of Our Country George Washington. It was Washington’s strong leadership and the time-honored precedents he set that helped the new nation to get started. Lee on the other hand had led an insurrection that attempted to break away from the nation and establish the Confederate States as a separate country that allowed slavery of human beings!
Who else could represent Virginia as the second statue allowed by each state in the Statuary Collection? The Governor appointed a commission to answer that question. After their public hearings and deliberations, the commission concluded that the appropriate person should be Barbara Johns. For too long a time many Virginians have not known of the heroic acts that Barbara Johns did to help set the course for recent history in Virginia. Her statue is already on the Virginia Capital grounds in the Virginia Civil Rights Memorial recognizing her leadership in bringing about changes in the unequal ways that white and black schools were funded in Virginia.
– December 10, 2020
The Constitution requires that after the federal census every ten years there is to be a reapportionment of legislative districts based on population growth and shifts reflecting “one-man, one-vote.” Virginia voters made history this year by approving a constitutional amendment establishing a Redistricting Commission. With Virginia having elections in odd-numbered years including in 2021 elections for governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and members of the House of Delegates, Virginia is on a fast track to get the Commission underway.
In the special session that ended in October, the General Assembly passed enabling legislation to establish the Commission by November 15. Already the eight legislators who will be on the Commission have been named as well as the retired judges who will participate. In all instances of appointing members, consideration shall be given “to the racial, ethnic, geographic, and gender diversity of the Commonwealth.” The partisan leadership in the House and Senate who made the appointments were prohibited from appointing themselves.
Applications are being accepted through December 28 from citizens who would like to serve on the Commission. Persons who have been involved in partisan political activity or who are relatives of members in office or those involved in partisan political activity are not eligible to serve on the Commission. For details on who is eligible for membership and details on applying, go to redistricting.dls.virginia.gov.
– August 22, 2019
In 1996 I had the great learning experience of chairing the Northern Virginia Electric Vehicle Launch Committee through the sponsorship of the Electric Transportation Coalition (ETC) and the US Departments of Energy and Transportation. The national goal to clean up the air we breathe was the impetus to the study we did in our region as was being done in nine other suburban regions throughout the country. The one-inch thick report we produced–“The Path to an EV Ready Community”–provided a guide that is still relevant and valuable today.
General Motors came out with its EV-1 vehicle which I had the pleasure to drive for a day; prospects were looking good for electric vehicles until suddenly the bottom dropped out of the market. All big manufacturers dropped their testing and production of electric vehicles. Our report was clearly ahead of its time.
Fast forward a couple of decades and electric vehicles have come into their own. All manufacturers I know of are predicting that over the next couple of decades electric vehicles will be the only cars and trucks they produce. They are environmentally clean, outperform traditional cars, need less maintenance, and are safer.
Virginia Mercury, – November 16, 2020
Gov. Ralph Northam said Monday he plans to propose legislation legalizing marijuana when the General Assembly convenes in January, setting the state on a path to become the first in the South to allow recreational use of the drug.
“We are going to move forward with legalizing marijuana in Virginia,” Northam said. “I support that and am committed to doing it the right way.”
Northam, a physician who says he’s never used the drug, cautioned “it’s not going to happen overnight,” saying he envisions an 18 to 24 month timetable for the state to establish and regulate the new marketplace.
Source: Campaign page
- Distinguished Transportation Leadership Award, Northern Virginia Transportation Alliance 2013
- Tower of Dulles Award from Committee for Dulles 2010
- Dulles Area Transportation Association Founder’s Award for Transportation Leadership, 2007
- Outstanding Contribution by a Public Official for New Services Along the Dulles Corridor, Virginia Transportation Association, 2000
- Conservation Hero, League of Conservation Voters, 2007-2013
- Legislator of the Year, Virginia Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts, 1996
- Eco-Hero Award, Sierra Club, 1996
- Legislator of the Year Award, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, 1993
- Plum Center for Lifelong Learning named in honor of Delegate Ken Plum, 2009
- Virginia Education Association Legislative Achievement Award, 2009
- Infant/Toddler Family Day Care – Achievement Award, 2007
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Cultural Foundation “2005 Outstanding Educator Award” honoring significant contributions in helping Fairfax County students attain their educational goals
- Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Cultural Foundation – Community Service Award for extraordinary commitment and leadership in improving public education for youth and adults in the Reston community and in the Commonwealth of Virginia, both as a professional educator and as a legislator, 2003
- Legislator Appreciation Recognition, Education for Independence Programs in Virginia, 2000
- Establishment of the Kenneth R. Plum Scholarship to the outstanding graduating senior, Fairfax County Public Schools, enrolled in “Project Opportunity.”
- Legislative Leadership Award, Virginia Literacy Council, for leadership in and support of basic education and high school completion programs and private literacy provider organizations, 1996
- Outstanding Service to Young Children Award, Northern Virginia Association for the Education of Young Children, 1995
- Civic and Economic Leadership
- Community Partner Award, Giving Circle of HOPE, 2014
- Greater Reston Chamber of Commerce – Pinnacle Award, 2007
- John Sturdivant Memorial Award for outstanding leadership and service to the state, county, and community from the 11th Congressional District Democratic Committee, 2001
- Internet Leadership Award, U.S. Internet Council, for advancing sound public policies for the Internet, 1999
- Virginia Economic Bridge – Leadership Award for promoting jobs throughout Virginia, 1999
- “Tech Tenure” Award for innovative and positive efforts to strengthen technology businesses, further technology investments and broaden technology education and job training on behalf of the technology industry by the Northern Virginia Technology Council, 1999
- “Tech Ten” Legislator for legislative leadership on behalf of the technology industry by the Northern Virginia Technology Council, three-time recipient, 1996, 1997, and 1998
- U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s President’s Legislative Council, a select group of opinion leaders strengthening the visibility of business issues on the national level, 1998 and 1999
- Chosen by the Speaker of the Virginia House of Delegates to represent the General Assembly at the National Leadership Institute hosted by the National Conference of State Legislatures, Aspen, Colorado, 1997
- Public Citizen of the Year Award, National Association of Social Workers-Virginia Chapter, 1995-96
- Outstanding Service Award, Virginia Network for Victims and Witnesses of Crime, Inc., 1994
- Good Guy Award, National Women’s Political Caucus, 1992
- Coalition for Northern Virginians with Mental Disabilities – Distinguished Leadership Award, 2007
- Virginia Association of Health Plans – Distinguished Public Service Award, 2007
- ENDependence Center of Northern Virginia – Appreciation Award, 2007
- Recognition from the March of Dimes for the Expansion of the Newborn
Screening Program, 2005
- Mental Health Community Contributor Award by the Fairfax-Falls Church Mental Health Advocacy Community at the Mental Health awareness Week Conference, 2005
- Co-Legislator of the Year, Alzheimer’s Association of Virginia, 2000
- Military Order of the Purple Heart Citation for outstanding legislative support to Virginia’s combat-wounded Purple Heart Veterans and their families, 1996
- Legislative Leadership Award, Virginia Center on Aging, for leadership in and support of aging-related issues in the General Assembly, 1996
- Drug Abuse Prevention “Warrior of the Year,” 1990
- Director of Adult and Community Education
Fairfax County Public Schools
2019 to present
Retired teacher and school administrator after nearly 30 years.
Old Dominion University
2019 to present
University of Virginia
2019 to present
- For awards, see campaign web site (2019)
Birth Year: 1941
Place of Birth: Shenandoah, VA
Religion: Ecumenical Christian
Spouse: Jane Meacham
Children: Timothy R., David W., Helen Kilinski, and Augusta Niday
Membership & Affiliation: United Christian Parish of Reston
Virginia Literacy Foundation (charter board member)
Retired Teachers’ Association
Dulles Corridor Rail Association (chairman)
Membership & Affiliation
House Democratic Caucus, Chairman Emeritus
Democratic Party of Virginia – Former State Chair
Dulles Corridor Rail Association – Founder and Chair
Virginia Literacy Foundation – Charter Member of the Board of Directors
Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation – Board of Trustees
American Frontier Culture Museum of Virginia – Board of Trustees
Greater Reston Arts Center – Advisory Board
Reston Chorale – Honorary Board Member
Virginians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty – Board of Advisors
United Christian Parish of Reston – Trustee, former Moderator of Board
- United Christian Parish of Reston
- Virginia Literacy Foundation (charter board member)
- Retired Teachers’ Association
- Dulles Corridor Rail Association (chairman)
Legislative Assistant: Kristy Pullen
Administrative Assistant During Session: Alexandra O’Brien
- Government – DelKPlum@house.virginia.gov
900 E. Main St,
Richmond, Virginia 23219
Phone: (804) 698-1036
2073 Cobblestone Lane
Reston, VA 20191
Phone: (703) 758-9733
Kenneth Ray Plum (born November 3, 1941) is a Democratic member of the Virginia House of Delegates, representing the 36th District since 1982. He earlier served from 1978 through 1980. His district includes a large part of Fairfax County, including the entirety of the town of Reston.
Plum was selected as chair of the House Democratic caucus on January 14, 2009. He was previously a chair of the Democratic Party of Virginia. He currently serves as Caucus Chair Emeritus.
2019 State Delegate
|Kenneth R. “Ken” Plum (D)||19,558||92.94%|
2017 State Delegate
|Ken Plum (D)||24,149||92.9%|
|Write In (Write-in)||1,841||7.1%|
2015 State Delegate
|Ken Plum (D)||10,344||93.9%|
|Write In (Write-in)||671||6.1%|
2013 State Delegate
|Ken Plum (D)||18,426||93.2%|
|Write In (Write-in)||1,341||6.8%|
2011 State Delegate
|Ken Plum (D)||9,522||64.1%|
|Hugh McAteer Cannon (R)||5,327||35.9%|
|Write In (Write-in)||10||0.1%|
2009 State Delegate
|Ken Plum (D)||12,893||59.9%|
|Hugh Mac M. Cannon (R)||8,581||39.9%|
|Write In (Write-in)||33||0.2%|
PLUM, KENNETH R (KEN) has run in 11 races for public office, winning 10 of them. The candidate has raised a total of $1,321,407.
Source: Follow the Money
Autism Advisory Council
Electric Utility Regulation, Commission on
Frontier Culture Museum of Virginia, Board of Trustees
House Agriculture Chesapeake and Natural Resources
House Science & Technology
Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation Board of Trustees
Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission
Technology and Science, Joint Commission on
See: Vote Smart
Kenneth Ray Plum (born November 3, 1941) is a Democratic member of the Virginia House of Delegates, representing the 36th District since 1982. He earlier served from 1978 through 1980. His district includes a large part of Fairfax County, including the entirety of the town of Reston.Plum was selected as chair of the House Democratic caucus on January 14, 2009. He was previously a chair of the Democratic Party of Virginia. He currently serves as Caucus Chair Emeritus.