Kristin Szakos is a writer and freelance editor and has co-written two books on community organizing. She chairs the Charlottesville Albemarle Metropolitan Planning Organization and serves on the Albemarle-Charlottesville Regional Jail Authority Board and the Steering Committee of the City of Promise, as well as several boards and commissions. She is immediate past chair of the National Council for Children, Education and Families, and chair of Virginia First Cities.
Ms. Szakos has lived in Charlottesville since 1994. She served as president of the Burnley-Moran PTO and was a member of the Charlottesville City Schools Special Education Advisory Committee. She was local Volunteer Coordinator for the 2008 Obama campaign and Virginia statewide coordinator for the 2009 National Day of Service. She previously served on the Board of Directors of the Charlottesville NAACP and worked as a grant writer and administrator for several local nonprofits. She is a member of Trinity Episcopal Church and sings with several local vocal groups.
After graduating from Grinnell College in 1981 and earning a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University, she worked for a short time for the Associated Press, but quickly discovered that her heart lay in local communities. She left the AP to become a reporter at the Appalachian News-Express, a small town newspaper in Pikeville, Kentucky, and later edited a journal of local community organizing, The Appalachian Reader. She moved with her family to Hungary in 1993 and to Charlottesville the following year. She spent a year writing in Lyon, France, in 2004-05, and in 2011 was accepted into the Harvard Kennedy School of Government's "Women and Power" program.
Her husband, Joe Szakos, is Executive Director of Virginia Organizing. They have two daughters, Anna, 24, and Maria, 22, and have had four foster children.
To contact a Council member, you can send an e-mail to the Clerk of Council, or mail a letter to P.O. Box 911, City Hall, Charlottesville, VA, 22902, or call (434) 970-3113 .