Dick Saslaw’s distinguished public service has brought about real results for families in Northern Virginia. Throughout his tenure in the Legislature, Dick has fought to improve public education, maintain a business-friendly climate, and find solutions for our transportation problems. Recognized by his colleagues for his effective leadership, Senator Saslaw currently serves as the Senate Democratic Leader. In Richmond, he has distinguished himself for his ability to work across the aisle to get results.

Senator Saslaw plays a key role in shaping Virginia’s fiscal policy and balancing the state budget. In the Senate he has spearheaded the effort to increase funding for public education and to expand the Commonwealth’s transportation infrastructure. He is committed to working with Governor McAuliffe to build a new Virginia economy that will generate long-term economic growth. He has supported initiatives in the Senate to foster a strong business climate, expand the middle class, and give Virginia workers the opportunity to get ahead.  

Independent groups across Virginia have recognized Senator Saslaw’s efforts to make Virginia a great place to live, work, and raise a family. He was recently named “Legislator of the Year” by the Virginia Education Association, and the non-partisan organization Virginia FREE has previously ranked him as Virginia’s most effective senator. A wide-ranging number of organizations have highlighted Senator Saslaw’s commitment to common sense public policy, including the Virginia Chamber of Commerce, the Hispanic Alliance, the Korean American Association, the League of Conservation Voters, the Virginia Autism Project, and Autism Speaks.

Dick grew up in Washington, D.C. He served in the U.S. Army from 1958 to 1960, prior to earning a B.S. in economics from the University of Maryland in 1965. In college he was a member of the track team, and is still an active runner. He is a successful local businessman in the gasoline and auto service industry.

Dick and his wife, Eleanor, are proud grandparents and have lived in Northern Virginia since 1968. Their daughter Jennifer is a graduate of Thomas Jefferson High School, the University of Virginia, and the Stanford School of Law. Eleanor retired from her position in the Fairfax County Public Schools as the director of guidance at West Springfield High School.  First appointed by then-Governor Mark Warner, Eleanor served as the president of the State Board of Education. She has been appointed by Governor McAuliffe to serve on the Virginia Community College Board.

Committee Assignments:

1. Commerce and Labor, Chairman

    a. Subcommittee on Utilities


2. Courts of Justice

3. Education and Health

    a. Subcommittee on Higher Education

4. Finance

    a. Subcommittee on Claims

    b. Subcommittee on Education

    c. Subcommittee on Transportation, Chairman

5. Rules

Joint Legislative Studies

    1. Joint Subcommittee on Elementary and Secondary Education Funding (Chapter 781, 2009)

    2. Joint Subcommittee to Study Tax Preferences

    3. Joint Rules

Legislative Commissions

    1. Advisory Council on Revenue Estimates

    2. Commission on Electric Utility Regulation

    3. Committee on District Courts

    4. Council on Virginia’s Future

    5. Virginia Commission on Intergovernmental Cooperation

Other Commissions, Boards, Etc.

    1. NCSL Budgets and Revenue Committee (2014)

    2. NCSL Education Committee (2014)

    3. NCSL Labor and Economic Development Committee (2014)

    4. NCSL Legislative Effectiveness Committee (2014)

    5. SLC Education Committee (2014-2016)Community Recognition in 2013

  • Named Legislator of the Year by the Virginia Education Association

  • Leadership in Energy Award given by the Virginia Chamber of Commerce


Community Recognition in 2012

  • Virginia Professional Fire Fighters: Legislator Of The Year Award


Community Recognition in 2011

  • The Hispanic Alliance: Leader Of The Year Award

  • Virginia FREE: Virginia’s most effective Senator

  • Korean American Association: Certificate of Appreciation

  • League of Conservation Voters: Legislative Hero

  • VA Autism Project & Autism Speaks: Autism Champion


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