Public Policy Committee Sets Its Plan for 2019
In 2019, Inova Loudoun Hospital’s Stacey Metcalfe took them helm as the Chair of the 2019 Public Policy Committee. This vital Chamber committee is not only responsible for sifting through the hundreds of legislative actions that may affect our business community, but is the tip of the spear leading our members into political action that impacts our community. In Metcalfe’s first meeting as chair, the committee agreed to focus on three strategies to help affect change in our community through policy – Influence, Engagement, and Education. Let’s get to know Stacey:
What was your first job in Loudoun County?
In 1996, I was working for AOL and that was the year they moved us all out to the new campus in Loudoun County. I was the Vice President of International Services, so it was very convenient being so close to Dulles given I spent most of my time traveling around the world. I always say AOL was a Rockstarjob because it literally introduced me to the world (and Loudoun)! I learned firsthand what exceptional leadership was and in-turn I was privileged to work with amazing and very talented teams across the globe. AOL had teamwork down to a tee and using our own technology we were all connected across time zones and continents. I remember thinking how cool it was that the world’s internet traffic was running right under our feet. Little did we know that was just the beginning of Loudoun’s data center industry!
Why did you decide to get involved in the Loudoun Chamber?
I was, actually, “tricked” into joining the Loudoun Chamber. My Inova Loudoun colleague, Rod Williams, was on the board and he started inviting me to Chamber events and introducing me around in the community. I found the Chamber staff, board members, our elected officials, and business leaders/members extremely approachable. About a year later, Rod announced that he had taken a leadership role at another healthcare system and was moving out of the area. The next thing I knew, I was his replacement on Loudoun Chamber Board of Directors and Inova Loudoun’s representative for all Chamber involvement. I am forever grateful to Rod for taking this approach with me. When it was time to step up and take my seat on the board, I was more than prepared (and I had already fallen in love with my Chamber).
At what point did you realize you wanted to get involved in our Public Policy Committee?
I originally joined the Public Policy Committee because my job required it. I had stepped into my current role as Director, Western Region Government and Community Relations right after I joined the board. I thought what better way to learn and meet others who were focused on advocacy, public policy issues, and the many challenges our growing county is facing. Mindy Carlin, who was the chair at the time, took me under her wing and helped get me up to speed. As I started engaging and getting to know our committee members, I became passionate about the work we were doing at the state and local levels in support of Loudoun County and our business community.
As Chair, what are you hoping to accomplish in 2019 through the Public Policy Committee?
Right now, our committee is laser focused on Loudoun 2040 (Loudoun’s Comprehensive Plan that will guide development and transportation improvements for the next 20 years), ensuring that the business community is well represented in the final push to conclusion. It is also a big election year in Virginia, so I am looking forward to our role (representing the business community) in helping to shape our local candidate’s positions through our communications and relationships. I am also excited about the PolicyMaker Series breakfasts we are working on that will expand and leverage our work in these areas.
Of your three strategic goals, which one are you most excited about working on?
I love all three of our goals, but the one I am most excited about is the education piece. Every time I look around the room at our Public Policy Committee members, I see so many subject matter experts who have pertinent information to share. I like that we are committed to having a presentation by one of our local experts on the Loudoun Chamber’s Policy agenda topics at every meeting. It allows for collaboration, great discussion, action and, I think, makes it less intimidating to be part of the committee. We also plan to deliver excellent content through our PolicyMaker Series. I always walk away feeling like I have learned so much after participating in those events and this year will be no different!
What recommendation would you give to a new Chamber member thinking about joining a committee?
My recommendation is to take a look at all of the committees the Chamber has to offer on our website: https://www.loudounchamber.org/initiatives/. Find one (or two or three) that interest you and go to a committee meeting to see if it is a good fit! Why not start with the Public Policy Committee and join us on the first Tuesday of every month at 8 a.m. in the Loudoun Chamber Offices? Our committee members will always welcome you with open arms, you can count on that!