Mayor Rick West has dedicated his life to Chesapeake Public Schools. For 30 years, Mayor West worked in the classroom as a teacher and served as principal of four schools: Southeastern Elementary, Great Bridge Intermediate and Hickory and Greenbrier middle schools. Rick continues to be grateful that he was given the honor of having the gym at Greenbrier Middle School named in his honor.

Mayor West knows parents move their families to Chesapeake so their children can receive the award-winning education this city is known for. In fact, Chesapeake Public Schools are 100% percent accredited and continue to strive for excellence.

Rick graduated from Chesapeake Public Schools in 1970 from Great Bridge High School. He is proud that he began his educational experience in Chesapeake Public Schools. He is even prouder that he, along with many other Chesapeake educators, helped prepare thousands of students for their futures, whether their desires were to attend college or pursue career development through strong technical education classes. Chesapeake students have an educational system dedicated to strong academic standards.

Mayor West strongly believes that our students have succeeded because of an amazingly strong team of caring individuals who realize the importance of uniting for the benefit of our children. When students experience the guidance, love and concern within their educational environment, statistics show a much greater level of success in their educational experiences. Chesapeake has always benefitted from a strong support system of parents, teachers and student alumni.

Mayor West is as committed as ever to a strong working relationship between Chesapeake City Council, Chesapeake School Board, parents and educators. Together, they continue to build on the exceptional reputation the Chesapeake Public School System has always enjoyed.

Public Safety

Chesapeake is fortunate and unique in having a sheriff’s department, police department, and fire department, who work cooperatively to ensure our citizens enjoy the safety they so deserve. In fact, Chesapeake is considered to be one of the safest cities in America.

In today’s environment, however, no City is immune to the most recent rise in crime involving gangs, mass, shootings, and school violence. This is why our emergency management response team is so vital and has been an important part of our public safety plan.

It is also the reason why Mayor West initiated and established a joint school/city task force in 2018. This task force continues to meet regularly to create actions that make our city and our schools a safe place to live and learn.

During and after COVID-19, our city council approved a public safety pay plan to help retain and attract employees. Public safety remains our top priority.

Economic Development & Responsible Growth

Rick West remains excited about the economic opportunities for our city.

Chesapeake is experiencing prosperity and growth exceeding all expectations. In Greenbrier, residents find Summit Point on the campus of the Fortune 200 Dollar Tree Corporation
Headquarters. This project continues to provide opportunities for good paying jobs, and serves as a
template for other corporations with similar goals. And, Dollar Tree has invested over $300 million in
Chesapeake resulting in additional revenue for the city.

Other Economic Success Stories:

Mitsubishi Corporation has expanded to 60 additional acres in Western Branch.
Sumitomo Machinery, located in the Cavalier Industrial Park, will expand its North American
Headquarters to a 100,000 square foot, state-of the art industrial facility.

Thanks to award winning planners and futurists, the Reimagine and Evolving Greenbrier campaign has
an achievable timetable to help Greenbrier continue to thrive as the region’s largest employment center
showcasing vibrant places to live, eat, shop and play.

The Virginia Natural Gas Southside Operations Center located adjacent to Oakbrook Commerce Park,
will be operating in late 2024.

Our Future Workforce -World of Works- has realized the importance of a trained, skilled and accessible
workforce and will prepare citizens for the growing economy with rewarding job opportunities.

Civility in America

If you follow the news today, you will constantly hear about the polarization of America. Political pundits have differing opinions on when this great divide originated. What is certain is that no one can predict when our country will return to a more civil discourse while debating the issues that divide us.

When Mayor Rick West was elected as Chesapeake’s mayor, this polarization was already in existence. One of Rick’s primary objectives was to be known as a consensus builder. To become a successful consensus builder, one must learn to listen to both sides of an issue. It is important that citizens are given the opportunity to share their concerns and passions regarding the city they have chosen as their home. He has worked hard to diligently listen to opposing views, do his homework and provide a solution that he believes will best serve Chesapeake.

Mayor West often says: “There is one thing we can all agree upon, we will not always agree.” Not everyone will be pleased with the outcome of votes on various issues; however, Mayor West believes if people commit to the process with facts, understanding, patience and respect, Chesapeake will serve as a shining example of civility in America.