RICHMOND, VA -- The Virginia House of Delegates today unanimously elected G. Paul Nardo as Clerk of the House of Delegates and Keeper of the Rolls of the Commonwealth. In keeping with tradition, Mr. Nardo was escorted by a special committee of delegates to the well of the House immediately following his election. There, the Honorable Cynthia D. Kinser, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Virginia, administered the oath of office, beginning immediately Mr. Nardo's service as the 21st Clerk of the House. Mr. Nardo has served as Chief of Staff to Speaker of the House William J. Howell (R-Stafford) since 2002. His experience in government spans more than two decades, including 17 years working on Capitol Square in Richmond. Prior to being tapped as Chief of Staff to the Speaker, Mr. Nardo served as Director of Government Relations and Communications for the State Council of Higher Education (SCHEV), as speechwriter for George F. Allen during his tenure as Governor, and as Legislative Director for the late Congressman Herbert H. Bateman (VA-1).
"Paul has the knowledge, skills, and fair-minded temperament to be an outstanding Clerk of whom we all can be proud," declared House Majority Leader M. Kirkland "Kirk" Cox (R-Colonial Heights) in his speech nominating Mr. Nardo for the post. "Paul understands that the Clerk is responsible for ensuring that all constitutional, statutory, and policy requirements are followed when the House of Delegates conducts the people's business. His organizational skills and attention to detail, combined with his open and outgoing demeanor, are a perfect fit for the Clerk's position."
"Not only is he a hard worker, a good listener and a leader who loves the House of Delegates, but Paul also understands better than most the central role the legislature plays in impacting the lives and livelihoods of all Virginians," noted Delegate Kenneth C. Alexander (D-Norfolk), who seconded Mr. Nardo's nomination as Clerk. "He has demonstrated good management skills, professionalism, organization and a solid knowledge and understanding of administrative, legislative and regulatory affairs. Paul intends to continue the tradition of the Clerk's Office being a non-partisan one. The Clerk's Office is a well-run and successful organization with many accomplished professionals. Paul will keep it that way."
"This is an immense honor for me and a tremendous responsibility, and I will devote my every energy to providing each delegate, and the citizens of the Commonwealth they serve, with the professional, effective and efficient services they expect and deserve," Mr. Nardo said. "The faith that has been placed in me by the delegates with whom I have worked for nearly a decade is truly humbling. As a student and lover of history, being given the opportunity to serve an institution that was the model for representative government in the New World is a privilege for which I am extremely grateful."
"I am looking forward to continuing my work with the highly skilled public servants who work in the Office of the Clerk. We have done so together for many years now, and they have been a valued resource and enormous help to me during my tenure as Chief of Staff to the Speaker. They are a remarkable group of professionals and I know they are ready to continue our teamwork as I undertake this new challenge," Nardo concluded.
As Chief of Staff to the Speaker, Mr. Nardo has been responsible for ensuring the timely implementation of daily administrative, policy and communications decisions by the Speaker as the presiding officer of the House. In that capacity, he worked with his immediate predecessor as Clerk, a highly respected and talented leader, to ensure an efficient, effective operation of the House that promoted innovations and implemented cost-savings. Mr. Nardo also has worked extensively with delegates, senators, the three gubernatorial administrations that spanned his tenure as chief of staff, the Capitol's press corps, lobbyists and the public. At the Capitol, he has earned a reputation for being open and accessible, for his attention to detail, and for working long hours. He also is known for having an intense and devoted love of history.
"It is essential to the success of our citizen legislature that we have an effective, professional staff working in the Clerk's Office," Speaker Howell remarked. "Having worked with him throughout my tenure as Speaker, I know Paul is the ideal choice to lead that important office. We have 100 delegates representing 8 million Virginians. All delegates necessarily rely on the Clerk's Office, both when we are in and out of session. The confidence they have placed in Paul today is testimony to the respect he has earned and the dedication he has shown to this institution."
Responsible for the administration of the Virginia House of Delegates under the direction of the Speaker, the Clerk serves all 100 delegates in a non-partisan manner. Overseeing a staff of 30 permanent employees, this legislative leadership position manages an annual budget of $21 million and is responsible for ensuring that all constitutional, statutory, and policy requirements are followed when the House conducts its business. As Keeper of the Rolls of the Commonwealth, the Clerk also is responsible for the official certification of all Acts of the Assembly. The successor to the House of Burgesses, which first met at historic Jamestown in 1619, the Virginia House of Delegates has been operating for 235 years.
G. Paul Nardo, 45, earned his Bachelor of Arts in Government from the College of William and Mary in 1988. He currently serves on the Governor's Commission on Higher Education Reform, Innovation and Investment, and on the Board of Directors for the Virginia Mentoring Partnership. A member of the Board of Directors for the Rotary Club of Richmond, #69, Mr. Nardo will serve as the Club's 100th President in 2013.
Married to Mary Augusta Barham of Portsmouth for 15 years, Mr. and Mrs. Nardo have a son, Barham Reed Tyler, age 12. The Nardo family worships at St. Alban's Anglican Church, for which Mr. Nardo previously served as organist, senior warden and a member of the Vestry.