Election 2015 Candidate Statements: George Foresman (Candidate for Circuit Court Clerk)


George Foresman

Candidate for Clerk of the Circuit Court

George Foresman
George Foresman

I respectfully ask for your vote to elect me Clerk of Albemarle’s Circuit Court.

Albemarle County is our home. I truly care about its future. I was born and raised in Lexington and graduated from Virginia Military Institute. For the past thirty years, I have excelled in leadership positions as a hands-on executive administrator in government and business. This experience gives me unrivaled credentials to be Albemarle’s next circuit court Clerk.

I believe a government should deliver the finest quality service to taxpayers, live within its means and it should reward public trust with ethical behavior. It’s our civic obligation to seek something better if it doesn’t.

Other candidates may tell you that working in the clerk’s office or being a lawyer make them more qualified for this job. Consider these facts about Virginia’s 117 clerks.

They were elected from diverse backgrounds in business, government, banking, real estate, law and occasionally from within the office. More than half were elected as independent candidates, reflecting Virginians’ values of wanting political partisanship out of the courthouse.

Fewer than a quarter are lawyers because the role of the clerk is not practicing law.

Successful clerks demonstrate the leadership skills and understanding to operate a complex government records, court service and financial operation with the highest level of integrity, not by being a lawyer or staffer in the office.

Albemarle’s taxpayers confront an eight-year record of financial mismanagement, waste and criminal scandals under Ms. Shipp. The office has plummeted from top tier status when she was elected, to being the most seriously problematic in the Commonwealth. If anything her long service impedes improvement.

I offer a clear 4-point plan to Modernize the Office, Restore Fiscal Integrity, Improve Customer Service and Ensure Accountability to Taxpayers.

It is a plan backed by my record of distinction as a successful leader in more than nine different organizations, ranging in size from a few employees to many thousands, with complex financial and customer service operations. I think my transition from an entry level government leader to unanimous approval by the U.S. Senate as a top administrator and Under Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security two decades later speaks to my integrity and ability to get the job done.

Eight years ago, Ms. Shipp won the election as a Democrat asserting that she was qualified to be Clerk because she had worked in the office. Yet under her mismanagement, the office’s performance has been among the worst in the Commonwealth. Financial penalties have even been levied against her by the state for not doing her job. She claims everything has improved, but another dismal audit and embezzlement scandal last year show it has not. The Albemarle Democratic Party abandoned her. Just four months ago, the Board of Elections cited her for financial errors in her own re-election records. Her recent “project announcements” looks like a desperate taxpayer funded effort to distract voters from her eight-year record of wretched performance. Voters have given her ample opportunity to prove herself capable, and she has not.

You can learn more about my plan and my experience at www.foresmanforclerk.com. With your vote on November 3rd we can restore Trust, Leadership and Value to Albemarle’s Clerk’s office.







  1. I watched Mr. Foresman at the Crozet Forum and was appalled at his behavior.

    Regardless if another candidate has supporters in the audience, no candidate for office should EVER direct their aggression at members of the audience, nor point them out and make them apologize for asking questions. There is no way I will never advocate someone such as George Foresman to run an operation where the customers/taxpayers come in and may expect at any point to be berated.

    Foresman is a bad choice for Albemarle in any capacity.

    • Mr. Lester:

      To be clear I did not suggest anyone apologize for asking a question.

      I do not know where you were sitting. A number of audience members were obviously being distracted by the constant conversation of the supporters you mentioned, while our General Assembly and School Board candidate’s spoke about their platforms. These audience members were seated in the area behind these supporters. It was apparent that their constant conversations while other candidate’s were speaking was making it difficult for some audience members to hear, even with the sound system. I did note in my response that their conversations were possibly disruptive and observed an apology might be in order.

      No less than three audience members and two candidate’s sought me out after the program to thank me, because they quieted. No one goes to a movie or concert and wants a constant conversation while you are attempting to listen to the show.

      If you were offended, I am sorry. Good customer service is about knowing how to keep a few from spoiling it for the many.

      • Way to go Mr. Lyster. I was also there and agree with you completely. I don’t think anyone was more disrespectful than Mr Foresman. The fact that he called someone out for talking where others couldn’t hear is appalling because there was lots of talking. I think he was offended by the question and that was his way to try and make him look better by putting the blame on someone else. The truth of the matter is he owed everyone an apology by sitting up there talking to the two he sat in between the whole night when the other candidates were talking.


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