Jennifer McClellan was elected to the Senate of Virginia in 2017. She serves on the Senate Transportation, Local Government, and Agriculture, Conservation and Natural Resources Committees. She Co-chairs the Capital Region Caucus, and is a member of the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, the Women’s Health Care Caucus, and the Fire and EMS Caucus. She also serves on the Legislative Advisory Council of the Southern Regional Education Board. Since 2008, she has served as a guest columnist for the Richmond Times Dispatch during the General Assembly Session.
In 2005 Jennifer McClellan was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates from the 71st District, where she served for 11 years. As a Delegate, Jennifer served on the House Commerce & Labor, Courts of Justice, and Education Committees. As a Delegate, Jennifer served as the Chair of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Commission, and as a member of the Virginia Crime Commission (Executive Committee) and the Virginia Conflicts of Interest and Ethics Advisory Council. She also served as Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus.
Jennifer previously served as Chair of Governor McAuliffe’s Transition Team, and as a member of Governor McDonnell’s Domestic Violence Prevention and Response Advisory Board, Governor Kaine’s Poverty Reduction Task Force and Commission on Sexual Violence, and the Civil Rights Memorial Commission.
Jennifer is an Assistant General Counsel at Verizon Communications, focusing on state regulatory and government affairs for several states. She is a member of the Virginia Bar Association (VBA) Administrative Law Section Council, and a member of the Virginia State Bar, the Metropolitan Women’s Bar Association, the Richmond Bar Association, and the Oliver Hill/Samuel Tucker Bar Association. She previously served on the Virginia State Bar’s Diversity Conference, Young Lawyers Conference (Past President), and Corporate Counsel Section (past Chair), and as Vice Chair of the VBA Pro Bono Task Force.
Jennifer’s community service extends to a wide variety of state and local organizations. She serves as a member of the Boards of the YWCA of Richmond, the Children’s Museum of Richmond, Chippenham/Johnston Willis Hospital, the Virginia League of Planned Parenthood, the Moton Museum, and Virginia Premier Health Plans, as well as the Virginia Center on Aging Advisory Committee. Her past board memberships include the State Board of the Sorensen Institute of Political Leadership (Vice Chair), the Richmond SPCA, the Alliance for Boys and Girls Clubs, the Black History Museum & Cultural Center of Virginia, Boaz & Ruth, Metro Richmond Boys & Girls Club, Flagler Home at St. Joseph’s Villa, the State Fair of Virginia, and the Oliver White Hill Foundation.
Jennifer is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, the Junior League of Richmond, the Fan District Association, the Fan Women’s Club, the League of Women Voters, and the Richmond Crusade for Voters. She is a graduate of the Sorensen Institute of Political Leadership’s 2001 Political Leaders Program and 2005 Candidate Training Program, and member of the 2004 Class of Leadership Metro Richmond.
Jennifer has also been a longtime Democratic Party activist and leader at the local, state, and national level. She serves as a member of the Democratic National Committee and a member of the DNC’s Resolutions Committee. She served as a member of the Association of Democratic Chairs (2002-2010) and as the Democratic Party of Virginia’s 1st Vice Chair, Organization (2007-2010), Vice Chair for Outreach (2002-2007), and Chair of the 3rd Congressional District Democratic Committee (2001-2002). She has been active with local Democratic committees in Richmond, Chesterfield County, and Charlottesville. She served three consecutive terms as president of the Virginia Young Democrats (1994-1997), and is the founding president of the Metro Richmond Area Young Democrats (1997-2004). She served as a page to the 1996 Democratic National Convention and a Delegate to every convention since 2000.
Prior to elected office, Jennifer was appointed by Governor Mark Warner to the Virginia College Building Authority (2002-2005), serving two years as Vice Chair. She also served on the Board of the Richmond Metropolitan Authority from 2004-2008.
Jennifer has received several awards in recognition of her dedicated community and public service. These honors include:
Virginia School Boards Association Legislative Award (2016)
Swanson Courage Award for Civil Rights (2016)
National Association of Social Workers (NASW), Virginia Chapter, Legislator of the Year (2016)
Richmond Bar Association Oliver Hill Award (2016)
YWCA of Richmond Outstanding Women Award for Law & Government (2014)
The Virginia Leadership Institute Trailblazer Award (2014)
Fan Free Clinic Exceptional Dedication & Public Service Award (2014)
The Virginia Conference of the American Association of University Professors Col. Michael S. Harris (Ph.D.) Award (2014)
The Virginia Education Association Legislative Champion (2014 and 2013) and Solid as a Rock Awards (2015 and 2013)
Virginia League for Planned Parenthood Mary Anne Reynolds Award (2012)
Virginia Commonwealth University Student National Medical Association Health Policy Award (2012)
Resolve Infertility Hero Award (2012)
Virginia League of Conservation Voters Legislative Hero (2015, 2012, 2011, 2009, 2008, 2006)
Better Housing Coalition Golden Hammer Special Recognition for Neighborhood Design & Planning (2011)
Virginia PTA Child Advocate of the Year Award (2011)
Democratic Black Caucus of Virginia Leadership Award (2011)
Virginia AARP Older Virginians Champion Award (2011)
Chesterfield Public Education Foundation School Bravo Award (2010)
Upsilon Nu Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Citizen of the Year Award (2010)
Girls for Change It Girl Award (2009)
National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE) Civil Rights Justice by Action Award (2009)
Virginia Housing Coalition Housing Leadership Award (2009)
Sorensen Institute of Political Leadership Expression of Ideals Award (2009)
Politico’s 50 Politicos to Watch (2009)
Virginia Lawyers Weekly Leader in the Law (2008)
Richmond NAACP Freedom Fund Banquet Award (2008)
Virginia Super Lawyers Magazine Top Young Lawyers in Virginia (2007)
Virginia Jaycees Outstanding Young Virginian (2006)
Leadership Metro Richmond Servant Leader Award (2005)
Style Weekly’s Top 40 Under 40 (2005)
Virginia State Bar Young Lawyer’s Conference Edward R. Burnett Young Lawyer of the Year Award (2002)
Jennifer was born in Petersburg and attended public school in Chesterfield County. She received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Richmond in 1994 and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Virginia in 1997. Jennifer is married to David Mills, and lives in the Fan District of Richmond with their son Jackson and daughter Samantha.