Virginia - Valley Votes Project

Project Objective: Focusing on the Shenandoah Valley area the project launched a series of voter engagement efforts including a speaker series, updated and interactive website, and voter registration tabling events on college campuses and in the local community.

Valley Votes Project Website

Visit the project website, Valley Votes Project, here. The website features resources to understand voting, information on how to request an absentee ballot, photos of events this project has hosted, and more. 

Speaker Series

Statue of Liberty

The Valley Votes Securely

Votes securely and learn how elections are secured in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia, and the United States more generally. 

Hands working together

The Valley Votes Confidently

Vote confidently by listening to this discussion with guest speaker Judd Choate, Colorado Director of Elections.

Illustration of people voting

The Valley Votes Enthusiastically

Vote enthusiastically after watching this discussion on the importance of voting with local elected officials. 

Voting box illustration

The Valley Votes Consistently

Vote consistently and learn how we can improve elections/outreach to build trust and improve turn-out. 

Valley Votes Project Logo

The Valley Votes Project

Learn more about the Valley Votes Project and how to prepare for the 2023 elections. 

"Vote Here Today" Lawn Sign

Media Coverage

WMRA: Improving trust in Virginia's elections

The Valley Votes Project has been hard at work this fall reaching out to voters through a variety of voter registration drives, voter educational materials and speaker roundtables. 

Interview w Bobbi Gentry

WHSV: Bridgewater political science professor educating students, community on importance of voting

Professor Bobbi G. Gentry is educating students at Bridgewater College and the community at large about building trust and understanding of the election process. 

People voting

WHSV: Free event to boost trust in elections

The Valley Votes Project is hosting a free event -- the Valley Votes Confidently -- open to the public on how perceptions of elections can impact voters. The event will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 11, at 6 p.m. at Blue Ridge Community College.

Screenshot from WHSV interview

WHSV: Valley Votes Project trust in elections preview

WHSV speaks with Benjamin Blankenship on The Valley Votes Project's mission, upcoming events, and more. 

Voting booths

James Madison University: JMU expert can speak on trust in elections

Ben Blankenship, a psychology professor at James Madison University, is one of the organizers of the series hosted by the Valley Votes Project. Blankenship is available to speak about the series as well as his research that focuses on trust and different components of society, including trust in elections and trust in government. 

Bobbi Gentry headshot

Bridgewater College: BC Professor Awarded Two Grants to Enhance Voter Education and Participation

Dr. Bobbi Gentry, Associate Professor of Political Science at Bridgewater College, is the recipient of two different grants to strengthen voter education and participation. 

Virginia mountains

Chapter Spotlight: Virginia SSN Builds Trust in Elections at Local Level

When the Scholars Strategy Network announced a new grant opportunity  to fund projects meant to increase trust and participation in elections, Virginia SSN chapter leaders Bobbi Gentry and Benjamin Blankenship immediately knew they wanted to apply.

Project Leaders

James Madison University
Benjamin Blankenship

Blankenship is a co-leader of the Virginia SSN chapter. Blankenship's research focuses on the role of identity and stereotypes on the political engagement, belonging, and well-being of marginalized groups, specifically focusing on groups with concealable identities.

Bridgewater College
Bobbi Gentry

Gentry is a co-leader of the Virginia SSN chapter. Gentry is a scholar of teaching and learning who focuses on improving student engagement in the classroom through simulations, policy problem/solution proposals, and research projects. She is also a youth voting scholar and does extensive research in political identity.