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NEA, VEA call for resignation of Gov. Northam after racist photos emerge

WASHINGTON - February 01, 2019 -

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) today acknowledged that he appeared in a yearbook photo showing a man dressed in blackface and another person wearing a Ku Klux Klan robe and hood. The photo was one of several listed on Northam’s medical school yearbook page of Eastern Virginia Medical School from the year he graduated in 1984.

The following statement was issued jointly on behalf of NEA President Lily Eskelsen García and VEA President Jim Livingston:

“There is no place for Gov. Ralph Northam’s racist actions. Both the National Education Association and the Virginia Education Association strongly condemn them. This goes beyond political affiliation. We must set a better example for our students. The public must have trust and confidence that their elected officials will fight for them, and that trust has been irreparably damaged. Ralph Northam should resign.”

Follow on twitter at @NEAmedia and @VEA4Kids

About the National Education Association
The National Education Association is the nation’s largest professional employee organization, representing more than 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers. Learn more at

About the Virginia Education Association
With more than 60,000 educator members across the state, the Virginia Education Association is Virginia’s premier education organization and the commonwealth’s strongest advocate for quality public education for all children. Find out more at

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Staci Maiers, NEA Communications, 202-270-5333 cell,
John O’Neil, VEA Communications, 804-873-8316 cell,