Martha Mugler is a candidate for Hampton City Council. Her name will appear on the ballot on Nov. 8, 2022.
10 On Your Side reached out to all of the candidates running in this race. If you do not see the candidate listed with a profile, we did not receive one.
See who is on your ballot by viewing the candidate lists on the Virginia Department of Elections website.
Name: Martha Mugler
Race: Hampton City Council
Biography: A native of Hampton, Martha Mugler attended public schools in Hampton and Poquoson before earning a bachelor’s in communications from Radford University in southwest Virginia.
Mugler’s professional experience has included work in higher education, community and public relations, and banking. Mugler served on the Hampton School Board, first elected in 2008. Seeking to provide the best possible education to the children of Hampton, Mugler served on the school board for 12 year and was chair of the board for four years.
During her time on the school board, Mugler was active at both the state and local levels, serving on boards and committees including:
- Virginia School Board Association’s Legislative Positions Committee
- WHRO Hampton Roads Telecommunications Association Educational Advisory Committee
- Council for Urban Education
- National School Board Association
Former Gov. Terry McAuliffe also appointed Mugler to the Virginia 529/AbleNow Board (Virginia College Savings Plan).
Mugler is deeply committed to her community. She has been recognized by the Barrett-Peake Foundation for her contributions to the Peninsula, received the Hampton Arts Foundation Coastal Virginia Renaissance Award for contributions to the local arts community, and has been recognized by the Coalition of Justice for Civil Rights for outstanding service to the community.
Martha has been active in a numerous local organizations including:
- Hampton Arts Foundation Board
- The Woman’s Club of Hampton, Inc.
- Downtown Hampton Child Development Center Board
- Star Achievers Academy Board
- Historical Foundation of Aberdeen Gardens Board
- First Presbyterian Church
- Sunday School Teacher at First Presbyterian Church in Hampton
- No Kid Hungry
- Junior Woman’s Club of Hampton, Inc
- Junior League of Hampton Roads
Mugler was elected to represent the 91st District in the Virginia House of Delegates in 2019. While serving, Mugler carried legislation that resulted in a 5% pay increase for Virginia teachers. She also served as patron to legislation for student driver safety, designated outdoor refreshment area licenses, and the development of the Virginia Division of Offshore Wind. In 2020, Mugler was recognized by the Virginia Education Association as Rookie Legislator of the Year.
During her legislative tenure in the Virginia House of Delegates, Mugler was assigned to the House Education Committee, House Finance Committee, and the House Counties Cities and Towns Committee. Mugler was appointed to and served on the following boards and commissions:
- Fort Monroe Authority
- Go Virginia (Virginia Initiative for Growth & Opportunity)
- The Chesapeake Bay Restoration Advisory Committee
- The Virginia Coal and Energy Commission
- Southern States Energy Board
- Chairman of the Virginia Arts Caucus
- The Commonwealth Caucus
- The SLC Education Committee
She is married to Ross A. Mugler. She is the proud mother of three children, Chandler, Will, and Anne-Logan, and Granmommie to 7-year-old Devon and 4-year-old Will.
Why should residents elect you to City Council?
I am an experienced public servant, banking professional, wife, and mother with a deep love and commitment to Hampton. It has been my life’s work to give back to the community in many ways, from serving as a PTA president at my children’s school, as a brownie and girl scout leader, to serving as a board member and treasurer for Peake Learning Center. It has been my honor to serve as an elected school board member and chair in Hampton and represent the 91st District in the Virginia General Assembly.
These roles have given me municipal and state-level budget skills, legislative, and policy-making experience. As a wife, mother, and grandmother, I understand the issues facing families and am empathetic to the needs of our most vulnerable citizens. My experience and history of collaboration has provided me with knowledge and a unique skill set which has well prepared me for a role on city council. In addition, as a member of the Virginia General Assembly, I know and understand the benefit of a healthy relationship with our state legislature.
Our city offers beautiful natural assets, many amenities for families, world-class public education, and a wealth of services to our citizens; I will work to ensure these assets remain intact and work on the challenges we face with other members of council and appropriate city departments. I hope residents will consider my past public service as a valuable skill that I can share with our community.
What are the top three priorities you would tackle if elected?
- Violent crime reduction
- Coastal resiliency
- Public education
What is the most pressing economic issue facing your community, and how would you address it?
The most pressing economic issue facing Hampton is attracting new businesses to locate or expand in Hampton. The tax revenue from small and larger businesses is critical to supplement our residential tax base and ensure our ability to provide the most basic services to our citizens. In addressing this issue, it will be critical to have shovel-ready sites available for businesses (specifically in the Hampton Roads Center) and even more importantly to have a skilled workforce to fill jobs. It will be important to support a wide variety of workforce development to prepare individuals for the jobs that will come. Businesses are looking for a highly-skilled workforce to support them when choosing a community.
What are your community’s biggest infrastructure needs, and how do you plan to fulfill them?
As a coastal Hampton Roads community, coastal resiliency is our most pressing infrastructure challenge. Ensuring coastal resilience, water quality, and waterways management will require significant focus on mitigating the impact of flooding and storm events. Hampton’s heritage demands that we maintain fishable, swimmable waters important to human health and protection of our ecosystems and aquatic environment. We must work to reduce shoreline erosion and maintain navigable waterways. It will be important, and I pledge to ensure resources and support to the science-based recommendations to address these demands.
In addition, Hampton is the oldest English-speaking settlement in the country, and there are many aging components of basic infrastructure including water, sewer, stormwater, and electricity. In order to maintain public utility services, it will be a priority to update these critical and basic infrastructures in a proactive manner.
How is gun violence impacting your community, and how do you plan to address gun violence?
Gun violence has deeply impacted our community, causing many citizens to fear for their safety and cause some to move to other communities. When I am meeting and speaking with citizens, gun violence is a tremendous concern.
The issue is complex and will require a multi-pronged approach. The plans to address gun violence must include a focus on mental health resources, police, social services, faith-based initiatives, and positive youth engagement. As a member of the Virginia House of Delegates, I was successful in directing $800,000 in funding to the Hampton community to address youth violence. I am committed to a safe community and will work to ensure that all available and appropriate resources will be dedicated to solutions.