“My time is out, and the citizens have spoken, and so for one last time, after 16 years of serving as your chair, I say: there is no more business. The meeting is adjourned.”
Twenty-four-year public servant Scott K. York (R-At Large) brought the gavel down, people stood up to applaud, and an era came to an end.
The final business meeting of the board of supervisors, which will next year have five fresh faces among its nine members, ran long as supervisors forgot their differences, said their goodbyes, and then adjourned to a conference room for a farewell dinner on Wednesday.
Vice Chairman Ralph M. Buona (R-Ashburn) surprised the chairman with a seal of Loudoun County crowded with signatures and well-wishes from county staff members.
“Chairman York, as you go throughout the county, and you’re driving around the county, all you have to do is look around,” Buona said. “Look at that road—you got that done. Look at that school—you got that done.”
Outgoing supervisors shared parting words, thanking their constituents and the county staff.
“Thank you, board members, for a wonderful four years, and thank you to the people of Sterling for allowing me to be your supervisor for 16 years,” Eugene A. Delgaudio (R-Sterling) said.
“I love this community, and I really did appreciate the opportunity, and just because I’m leaving this board doesn’t mean it’ll be the last you’ll see of me,” said Janet S. Clarke (R-Blue Ridge.) “I’ll just be on the other side of the dais.”
Kenneth D. Reid (R-Leesburg)—who, like Clarke, did not seek re-election after one term— recalled the retirement of record-setting Cleveland Browns fullback Jim Brown at the peak of his career.
“He was asked, why did you do it? And he said, well, too many players stay too long,” Reid said. “They rely on the game, and I retired because it was time to do other things.”
“It’s been a very quick 100 days,” said James Bonfils (R-Broad Run) who was appointed to fill a vacant seat. “I do remember that first day with Chairman York and all of [county administrator] Mr. [Tim] Hemstreet’s staff, starting at 9 a.m. and concluding somewhere around 6:30 trying to give me all of this information in one day.” Like many supervisors, he promised to be back at the podium.
York exhorted returning board members to “continue supporting excellent libraries, excellent education, please make sure you continue to fund all those transportation projects that need to be done.”
“Understand: Scott York was just a part of it,” York said. “It took a board, it took staff, it took a community to make what Loudoun County is today. I think of everything that we were back in 1996 when I joined the board. I think of everything that we were back in 1996 when I joined the board, to where we are today, the prosperity that we have.”
Delegate Randy Minchew (R-10) also offered his compliments to outgoing board members. He called Bonfils a “steady hand on the tiller,” commended Reid’s service and Clarke’s ethics, and said Delgaudio “taught us all how to be a better constituent-service elected officials.”
He also reminded the board of the unanimously-adopted resolution in the General Assembly commending York on his years of service.
“As we go forward as a community, there is much to be proud of,” York said, “but there is much to still accomplish.”