Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn, the first woman in the 400-year history of Virginia’s Legislature to hold the position, rose to this role after representing the 41st House District for a decade, making her the fastest person to ascend to the post. The 41st District includes parts of Fairfax, Fairfax Station, and West Springfield.
Speaker Filler-Corn’s passion for service shines through her tireless work to make the Commonwealth of Virginia a better place to live, work and raise a family. Her commitment to improving the lives of her neighbors is what drove her to run for the House of Delegates. She has spent her time in the legislature as a listener and problem solver, delivering results that move her community forward and advocating for everyone equally regardless of background, circumstance, or ideology. She has introduced, championed, and passed legislation that has made Virginia a safer, stronger, and more equal Commonwealth.
Hearing from her constituents that traffic and congestion in Northern Virginia were increasingly becoming a burden on their daily lives, Speaker Filler-Corn made fixing our transportation system a priority when she took office. As a member of the House Transportation Committee from 2011-2018 and a member of the Joint Commission on Transportation Accountability, the Speaker actively fought for years to improve transit in the Commonwealth. This year, the Speaker carried the Omnibus Transportation Modernization Bill. Among many other important provisions, this legislation ensures the Commonwealth’s transportation fund remains solvent and supports vital infrastructure to secure much-needed traffic relief for her constituents. The Speaker has consistently advocated for funding for the two Virginia Railway Express (VRE) stations in House District 41 (Rolling Road and Burke Centre), giving her constituents an additional option when traveling to and from Washington, D.C. After learning of the strain transportation costs were having on Virginia’s disabled veterans, the Speaker is currently leading an effort to pass a constitutional amendment exempting a disabled veteran’s motor vehicle from personal property taxes. This amendment passed a second time during the 2020 Session and will appear on the ballot in November for ratification by voters.
The Speaker was an active PTA board member while her children were students in the Fairfax County Public Schools. She understands the increasing need for additional K-12 funding in Virginia and is committed to improving schools and raising teacher pay in the Commonwealth. She has previously passed legislation making required higher education course materials, such as textbooks, more affordable, giving more Virginians the chance to succeed in post-secondary institutions. The Speaker also led the successful effort requiring the meaning of consent to be included in family life curriculum taught in Virginia’s high schools.
At the core of the Speaker’s commitment to her community is her commitment to keeping them safe. And there is no greater public threat than the gun violence epidemic crippling our country. That is why in 2018, following the horrific mass school shooting in Parkland, Florida, Speaker Filler-Corn co-chaired the Safe Virginia Initiative Task Force. This first-of-its-kind commission spent nearly a year listening to Virginians across the of the Commonwealth about how to combat gun violence. The policy recommendations issued by the Safe Virginia Initiative Task Force in January 2019 played an important role this year as Virginia took long-needed action to combat this public safety crisis. During the 2020 General Assembly session, Speaker Filler-Corn helped shepherd seven of the Governor’s eight gun violence prevention bills to make the Commonwealth a safer place for all Virginians.
Speaker Filler-Corn has made passing legislation that protects the rights of women in her district and around the Commonwealth a major focus of her time in the House. The Speaker sponsored the 2017 Birth Control Access Act, which mandates that pharmacists provide women a full year supply of birth control pills if prescribed and permitted by a doctor. This crucial legislation better empowers women to better plan their lives, careers and families. She has also been a fearless leader in addressing sexual assault on college campuses by passing a requirement that any member of college law enforcement. investigating a sexual assault undergo trauma-informed sensitivity training. The Speaker has been an outspoken advocate in stopping invasive, anti-choice measures such as the transvaginal ultrasound requirement. And, in 2020 Speaker Filler-Corn presided over the House of Delegates when Virginia became the 38th state necessary to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment.
Speaker Filler-Corn recognizes a pillar of a strong community is a strong economy. To keep up with the ever-changing needs of Virginia’s economy, Speaker Filler-Corn has a record of introducing and passing laws that cut down on red tape for small business in the Commonwealth. She has also been a leader on workforce development, currently serving as Chair of Jobs for Virginia’s Graduates. This program assists at-risk and disadvantaged youth graduate from high school and find well-paying jobs.
The Speaker also knows our economy works best when it works for everyone. That is why Speaker Filler-Corn worked with her constituents to introduce and champion the passage of the Virginia Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act. This law made it possible for individuals with disabilities and their families to open tax-free savings accounts, similar to 529 college savings accounts, so they can save for important future living expenses such as education, housing and transportation. This groundbreaking legislation established Virginia as a national leader and the first state to implement the ABLE Act after federal authorizing language was passed.
Accessibility to quality health care, especially for low-income Virginians, is a major concern in the Speaker ’s district and throughout the Commonwealth. For years, the Speaker worked tirelessly to close the Medicaid coverage gap for less fortunate Virginians. And while she and her Democratic colleagues were not successful at first, in 2018, she was proud to help deliver health care coverage for 400,000 Virginians when Governor Northam signed Medicaid Expansion into law.
The Speaker’s career has been devoted to public service. She was an original organizer of the Million Mom March, acting as the Vice President and Chairman of the Northern Virginia chapter in 2001. Prior to her election to the House, she also served in the administrations of Governors Mark Warner and Tim Kaine.
The Speaker and her husband Bob live in Springfield and remain active members of the same community in which they raised their two children, Jeremy and Alana.