Delegate Mark Keam honors former Delegate Dick Fisher in the Virginia House of Delegates
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
Contact: Julia Kim
RICHMOND, VA — Delegate Mark Keam today led a chamber-wide ceremony on the floor of the Virginia House of Delegates to honor the memory of Richard Leland "Dick" Fisher who passed away in August 2012.
Fisher was a Republican member of the House of Delegates who served nearly four terms, from 1990-97, representing the same 35th District seat currently held by Keam.
In January, the House of Delegates and the State Senate unanimously adopted House Joint Resolution 735 to celebrate Fisher's life. Today, in a special "Center Aisle" presentation, Keam presented a framed copy of this resolution to Fisher's widow, Mrs. Christine (Tina) Fisher.
In his floor speech, Keam stated: "Dick Fisher was a true Virginia Gentleman who was genuine and humble. He was always willing to help others and he gave generously of his time and energy. He also had an outsized personality and a great sense of humor."
Keam continued, "Above all, Dick loved everything about the House of Delegates. He revered and respected this institution. He knew that his job was to represent those people who sent him down here, not to seek the limelight for himself."
Fisher was an effective legislator who made a real difference on matters that he was passionate about, such as providing resources at school for children with special needs.
"Even though he served as the Whip of the then-minority Republican caucus, Dick always looked for opportunities to reach across the aisle to his Democratic colleagues and to resolve differences and seek meaningful compromises with civility," said Keam.
Participating in the ceremony on the House floor were Fisher's former Legislative Aide Mike Polychrones, his former political consultant Mike Belefski, his former House colleagues Virginia Supreme Court Justice Bill Mims, Senator Frank Wagner and Senator Chap Petersen.
For more details on the life of Richard Leland Fisher, please refer to the obituary copied below, and the text of House Joint Resolution 735.
Delegate Mark Keam (www.DelegateKeam.org, @MarkKeam) represents Virginia's 35th District, located in Fairfax County. The House District includes Tysons, the Town of Vienna, Dunn Loring and portions of McLean, Oakton and Fairfax. Currently serving in his second term, Delegate Keam is a member of the House Education, Finance and Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources committees and the Joint Subcommittee to Evaluate Tax Preferences.
Richard (Dick) Leland Fisher a former executive for the Washington Gas Light Company and four-term representative to the Virginia House of Delegates for Virginia's 35th District passed away on Monday, August 27 at the age of 64. Dick was born September 16, 1947, in Olney, MD to Joseph Edward and Elizabeth Smith Fisher. He was a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University, receiving a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Management in 1971.
Dick (Fish) joined the Army Reserves in 1969. He spent his service as a landing craft boat skipper (LCM-8 coxswain) in the 464th Medium Boat Company, 97th Arcom, First Army and was stationed in Alexandria, Virginia for most of his service. He achieved the rank of specialist 7. Throughout his life, he remained close to many of the members of his old unit.
Dick served for 29 years with Washington Gas Light Company starting in 1971, and retiring in 2000. He enjoyed progressive promotions over his career, rising to the executive ranks, first as Vice President of Delivery Services and then as Vice President of General Services. In addition to day-to-day management of operations and services, he was responsible for oversight of the company's transmission and distribution lines throughout the Washington Metropolitan area. He had overall responsibility for implementing Federal Regulations governing the operation. Prior to entering federal government service, Dick served as a consultant on safety and reliability to the U.S. energy industry.
In July 2006, Dick was appointed Chief of Staff in the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services (OSERS) under then-Assistant Secretary John Hager's Chief of Staff. He was responsible for the overall administrative operations of the office and oversight of disability grants and research. In July 2007 he was appointed as Acting Director of the Department's National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR).
Dick served three terms, from 1985 to 1989, on the Town Council of Vienna, Virginia. He was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates in 1989 and was re-elected in 1991, 1993 and 1995. He represented constituents in the 35th House District, which included Tyson's Corner, Vienna, Oakton, and part of Fairfax City. As a member of the General Assembly, Dick served as the Minority Whip and on the following committees: General Laws; Health, Welfare, and Institutions; Labor and Commerce; and the Chesapeake Bay and Tributaries.
As a Delegate, Dick was most proud of his efforts on behalf of children with special needs. Dick was the sole recipient of the Governor and First Lady's Award for Community Service and Volunteerism in 1997. He was active in the Volunteer Emergency Families for Children (VEFC), an organization that provides emergency temporary foster care for children in need. In 1998, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and Celebrate Fairfax, Inc. named Dick ‘Lord Fairfax of the Hunter Mill District' in recognition of his extensive community service.
Dick loved people and enjoyed being with his friends and family. He loved to laugh; was the first to volunteer to help a friend and gave generously of his time and energy. He trusted without hesitation and expressed a genuine concern for the needs of others, often before his own. He was a jack of all trades and enjoyed working with his hands and could (and did) fix anything. Growing up Dick was active in the 4-H Beef Club; he was a rower and baseball player in college and he loved his annual ski trips with his lifelong "SKI-DOG" buddies.
Dick is survived by his wife Tina Linden Fisher of Culpeper, VA
Brother Tom Fisher and his wife Julie Fisher of Salisbury, MD
His children Nichole Latiolais (Mark), Christina Magee (Shawn), Dylan Evers (Sonia), Jake Fisher and Joseph Fisher
His nephew Matthew Fisher and his wife Katy and their daughter Molly and son Wyatt of Winston-Salem, NC
Grandchildren: Ethan, Jordan, Amelia, Kieran
A remembrance of Dick's Life was held Friday, August 31st at 12:00 at the Culpeper United Methodist Church, 1233 Oak Lawn Dr. in Culpeper, VA 22701.