In November 2020, the Cities of Manassas and Manassas Park will each hold separate local elections for the Mayor and three City Council members in each city. Below are brief descriptions of the Democratic candidates we’ve nominated and the independent candidates we’ve endorsed for those eight local seats. To view the candidate’s campaign website or Facebook page, click on the headline for that candidate.
Candidates for Election in Manassas Park:
Jeanette Rishell has been a resident of Manassas Park since 1994 and was elected Mayor in 2016, after serving as a Councilmember for 4 years. Jeanette serves as the City’s representative to the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority (NVTA), as Vice Chair of the NVTA Finance Committee, as the City’s representative to the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission (PRTC) and the Transportation Planning Board (TPB) at the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments. Jeanette also serves on the Upper Occoquan Service Authority (UOSA) Board of Directors.
Although much progress has been made, Jeanette understands that the financial condition of the City still requires financially careful decision-making and lean budgets until the high yearly debt service begins to decrease and the incoming revenue from new economic development begins. A strong and successful City also depends upon wisely allocating limited resources to the many unmet needs across the City. The City did not get into this financial situation overnight, and it will take time to overcome these challenges.
Yesy Amaya was born in El Salvador and has lived in Virginia since 1985. She grew up in Falls Church, graduating from Falls Church High School in 1995. In 2001 she bought her first home in Manassas Park and has been a member of the community since. Her three children have all attended Manassas Park City Schools with the oldest graduating in 2019.
In 2004, she established her first business in Prince William. As the economy went into recession, she closed her retail bakery and moved it home to Manassas Park. After having her at-home business for 5 years she moved it once again to Prince William. Currently, she and her sister own an event venue in Maplewood Shopping Center.
Yesy Amaya understands the struggles of small business ownership and the obstacles one faces trying to get ahead in the current environment. She is persistent and always willing to lend a hand when she can. She strives for fair treatment and equal opportunities for all.
Darryl Moore is a life-long Democrat. Prior to moving to Manassas Park, he served 12 years on the Berkeley (CA) City Council. During his tenure on the Berkeley City Council, he doubled the funding for youth jobs through the summer youth employment program, led efforts to rebuild the four branch libraries as Chair of the Library Board, won federal stimulus funds to repave a major street in the City, secured a neighborhood-serving grocery store for the City, and put together $2 million in funding to rejuvenate the largest and oldest park in the City.
Darryl has a Bachelors of Arts Degree in Sociology from the University of California, Santa Cruz and a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago.
If elected to the Manassas Park City Council, Darryl will be accessible and transparent. He will hit the ground running, working for all of the residents of Manassas Park. His priorities are:
- Lower our high property taxes by enhancing and encouraging proper and appropriate economic development.
- Increase funding to our Public Schools. More funding needs to be directed into the classroom.
- Enhance and maintain our infrastructure. Ensuring that our beautiful parks, pathways, streets, and sidewalks are maintained.
Donald grew up in Manassas Park and still owns the house on Manassas Drive where he grew up. While serving on City Council, he has made raising employee pay, lowering the property tax rate, and expanding the business base as priorities. He has been a champion for mass transit and Route 28, to reduce traffic congestion, and has served on committees that manage VRE and bus service. Serving on the Library Board of Trustees, Donald has ensured that all citizens have access to reading materials and Wi-Fi, while saving City taxpayers $280,000/year by creating our own library in the City. He voted to refinance the City’s debt in 2019, to save $2.2 million in interest payments for the taxpayers of Manassas Park.
Candidates for Election in Manassas City:
A life-long resident of Manassas. Michelle knows that Manassas is a special place to live, work, and raise a family. She has the experience, problem-solving skills, and vision to effectively serve our city as Mayor.
Michelle holds a Bachelors in Human Resources and an MBA. As a volunteer and business owner in our community, Michelle brought people together to find solutions and get things done. On city council, she has advocated for our entire city, demanding transparency and results.
As a human resources professional and small business owner, Michelle understands what it takes to help people become gainfully employed, helping to create jobs and grow our economy. She will continue to bring ideas for creative economic development, lead efforts for continuous and sustainable employment for everyone who wants to work, and attract investments to make Downtown an even greater destination.
Over the last two years, both as a candidate and as one of your Councilwomen, Michelle has put her hands to plow to ensure that Manassas works for all who call our wonderful city home. Through late night work sessions, council meetings, community events, and various other local government matters, Michelle has had one focus the entire time–positioning Manassas City to be the gold standard for what is possible when we come together as a community to tackle the issues and challenges that face our city.
Michelle is running to help return the power in City Hall back to the citizens of Manassas City. As a city, we have big challenges ahead but also immense opportunity to position Manassas to be the magnet that attracts new business investment, growing our tax base while not increasing taxes. We also must help our schools, in a community effort, to transform into world-class environments that continue to deliver the next generation of innovators and entrepreneurs. Join her in building that bridge into our future!
Tom Osina is a 20 year resident of Manassas. He and his husband live in the Georgetown South community. He is a member of the Citizens’ Advisory Committee on Solid Waste, Treasurer of the Georgetown South Community Council, and Board Member & Co-Founder of Equality Prince William. Tom is a graduate of the City of Manassas Leadership Academy and owns and operates a small business that provides headquarters and project management to non-profits.
Pam Sebesky has lived in the greater Manassas area most of her life. She and her husband both graduated from Stonewall Jackson High School (Unity Reed) in 1983 and married in 1990. Pam graduated from the Prince William County School of Practical Nursing in 1984 with an LPN and VCU/MCV in 1988 with a BSN. She has worked in cardiology most of her career, first at the hospital and for over 20 years for Kaiser Permanente as a Cardiology nurse.
The Sebeskys made their home in the City of Manassas in 1992 and had 2 children, who both graduated from Osbourn High School. Emily went on to graduate from Christopher Newport University and works in HR. Joseph graduated from University of Mary Washington and works in security. They are very proud of their adult children, who work hard and give back by volunteering.
Pam was elected to the Manassas City School Board and served from 2010-2016, when she was elected to the Manassas City Council. While on the school board, the schools became fully accredited, and Pam instituted a student school board liaison program that still goes on today. Since joining the City Council on January 1, 2017, Pam has consistently worked with all Manassas citizens, as transparency and inclusion are the reasons she serves.
During her time on Council, Pam has led efforts for, or been an integral part of, policy change and improved transparency, recognizing Gay Pride Month, initiating the Equity and Inclusion Task Force, and implementing a policy and procedure for term limits on all city Boards, Committees, & Commissions.
Pam has served as Chair of the Council Appointments Committee, served on the Council Finance Committee, and currently serves on the Council Land Use Committee. In August 2019, Pam was elected by Council to serve as the Vice Mayor, a position she continues to hold.
Pam has represented Manassas on the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority’s Planning Coordination & Advisory Committee and on the Virginia Railway Express Operations Board.
She currently serves as the Vice-Chair of the Potomac and Rappahannock Transportation Commission, which operates the Omniride bus service, and as Vice-Chair, Virginia of the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board (at the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments), of which she will become the Chair in 2022 if reelected to Council.
Pam is proud of her accomplishments during her first term on Council. She has tried to represent everyone, by leading with honesty and integrity, but there is still much to do. She would really appreciate your support to continue her work as a Manassas City Councilwoman.
Councilman Mark Wolfe has lived in the City of Manassas since 1990. Mark has significant executive leadership experience in the corporate and non-profit sectors and is currently the Chief Operating Officer of MovieComm. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Iowa. Amy, his wife of 39 years, is the Artistic Director and CEO of Manassas Ballet Theatre. They have two children, both of who graduated from Osbourn High School. Cece also graduated from George Mason University, and Colin was killed in action in Iraq in 2006.