A Commonwealth of Virginia Website

Pamela Northam

First Lady of Virginia


Elevating environmental education


Promoting innovation and diversity in STEM education


Preparing Virginia’s children for success from cradle to career

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Pamela Northam

Since January 2018, Pamela Northam has used her experience as a former pediatric occupational therapist and science educator to lead the Northam administration’s work to increase access to quality early childhood care and education. Since the beginning of the administration, over $65 million in new state, federal, and local funds have been invested in Virginia’s early education system, including a $9.9 million innovative federal preschool development grant overseen by the First Lady’s office. Mrs. Northam’s primary goal is to improve school readiness statewide so that Virginia children are ready for success in school and beyond.

Previously, the First Lady served as community outreach coordinator for the environmental nonprofit Lynnhaven River NOW (LRN), where she oversaw advocacy and outreach programs for homeowners, congregations, and businesses to help them to become more sustainable. Prior to joining LRN, Mrs. Northam taught high school biology. Recognizing a need for STEM in elementary education, she became a national award-winning science specialist and worked to develop an inquiry-based, hands-on curriculum for students in grades K through 5.

Mrs. Northam is the chair of both the Virginia Children’s Cabinet and the Virginia STEM Education Commission, and is a board member of the innovative E3 School in Norfolk. After studying at Baylor University and the University of Texas, the First Lady specialized in pediatric occupational therapy, where her work included rehabilitation hospitals, teaching hospitals, and special education. The Northams have two adult children: Wes, a neurosurgery resident; and Aubrey, a web developer.

Pam Northam


Week in Review

Leading Virginia Forward - Week in Review



Sweeping Democratic Victories Make History in Virginia and Flip General Assembly



  • “The ground has shifted in Virginia government,” said Governor Northam. “The voters have spoken, and they have elected landmark Democratic majorities in both the Senate and the House of Delegates. I am proud of my fellow Democrats and inspired by our shared victory. Together, we will build a stronger, more inclusive, and more just Commonwealth.”
  • Read Governor Northam’s full statement on the Democratic victories in Virginia


Governor Northam Holds Cabinet Meeting to Outline Priorities with New Democratic Majority



  • “Since I took office two years ago, we have made historic progress as a Commonwealth—and Virginians made it clear they want us to continue building on that progress,” said Governor Northam. “They want us to defend the rights of women, LGBTQ Virginians, immigrant communities, and communities of color. They want us to increase access to a world-class education for every child, and make sure no one is forced to go bankrupt because they or a family member gets sick. They want us to invest in clean energy and take bold action to combat climate change. And they want us to finally pass commonsense gun safety legislation, so no one has to fear being hurt or killed while at school, at work, or at their place of worship. I look forward to working with our new Democratic majority to make these priorities a reality.”


Governor Northam Pledges to Address Gun Violence Emergency in the Commonwealth with Control of Virginia Legislature



  • “Virginia spoke loudly on Tuesday and said enough is enough,” said Governor Northam. “Dealing with the gun violence in Virginia will be a top priority of our administration. Now certainly with a Democratic Senate and House, I believe we can move forward with common sense gun legislation. We have been talking about these things, but now we have the opportunity to take action. And that is what we intend to do in January.”


Governor Northam Announces Plans to Boost Tech Talent Pipeline in Virginia, Produce 31,000 New Computer Science Graduates Over 20 Years



  • Details of this announcement
  • “This initiative is an investment in Virginians,” said Governor Northam. “Virginia’s tech sector will continue booming only if we can train the workforce those jobs require. With today’s announcement, we are educating a workforce that will fill jobs at hundreds of tech companies around the Commonwealth, including at Amazon, helping boost our economy and quality of life in every corner of Virginia.”


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David Cary

David Cary
Chief of Staff to First Lady Pamela Northam


David most recently served on the Northam for Governor campaign. David previously managed civil rights, healthcare, and environmental issue campaigns in Hawaii, Texas, and New Hampshire. He is a Chesterfield County native and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Natalie Chapman

Natalie Chapman
Executive Assistant


Natalie previously served as Special Assistant to the Chief Workforce Development Advisor and was a 2018 Governor’s Fellow in the Office of the First Lady of Virginia. Natalie is a native of Wise County and graduated from the University of Virginia’s College at Wise with a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics.

Jenna Conway

Jenna Conway
Chief School Readiness Officer


Prior to her appointment, Jenna served as the Assistant Superintendent of Early Childhood at the Louisiana Department of Education, where she led a first-of-its-kind effort to unify and improve the state's child care, Head Start, and pre-kindergarten systems since 2012. Jenna has also previously held roles as Director of Strategic Planning and Enterprise Program Management at the New York City Housing Authority and Director of Project Management at Ashoka’s Changemakers in Washington, DC. Jenna is a native of Charlottesville and holds a degree in American Studies from Yale University and a Master of Business Administration from Stanford University.

Places to Visit

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First Lady's Back to School Tour 2018

Contact the Office of the First Lady

For scheduling requests, please fill out this form or contact Natalie Chapman

Or by mail,
First Lady of Virginia
Patrick Henry Building
1111 East Broad Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219

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