When Greg Habeeb announced his campaign in November to replace Morgan Griffith in the Virginia House of Delegates, not many people were surprised. Habeeb has been a long time political activist and is a well-known local lawyer. But it has been his work within the community that has attracted the attention of his many supporters.
“People encouraged me to run and I think people expected and wanted me to run because I have a record of service,” said Habeeb. He teaches Sunday School at the Church of the Holy Spirit in Roanoke County and he is on the Board of Directors for Big Brothers, Big Sisters. He also works with youth through Young Life.
Habeeb also volunteers at the Military Family Support Center, an organization that supports the families of active duty members serving overseas and with veterans, where he offers his legal services at no charge.
“Helping other people is an important part of who I am. It’s how I grew up,” says Habeeb. “I was taught to always live by the Golden Rule.”
Habeeb grew up in SW Virginia. While attending Christiansburg High School, he became interested in Virginia politics. He served as Governor at the YMCA Model Mock General Assembly conference and has been active in politics ever since. He attended Wake Forest for both his undergraduate and law degree. After graduation, he returned to the Roanoke Valley to raise his family and practice law.
“Family is the most important thing to me. I have three beautiful children and a wife that supports me,” says Habeeb. “I could not be more blessed.” He and his family live in Salem, where is oldest son is in kindergarten, his younger son is in pre-school and his daughter will be two years old soon.
Habeeb’s wife, Christy, is a former school teacher. Christy says that she and Greg are concerned about the future for their children, both in terms of education and the economy. “We both just want the best for our children. The best schools and the best future. I think that is a big part of why Greg is running,” she says.
Habeeb says his experience as a business attorney will help him accomplish his goals. “I’ve worked with small business owners across the valley, and they all tell me the same thing. Turning around our economy and helping businesses hire new workers is the first step toward a better future.”
He is a partner at Gentry Locke Rakes & Moore and has been named one of the “Top 20 Business Leaders Under 40” by The Blue Ridge Business Journal. The Virginia Business Magazine named him to their list of “Legal Elite” Attorneys. He boasts endorsements from over 40 valley business leaders, part of a coalition called “Business Leaders for Habeeb.” He has also received the endorsements of Governor Bob McDonnell, Morgan Griffith, Bob Goodlatte and Ralph Smith, to name just a few local political leaders.
Habeeb says he is “proud to have the support of small business owners – they know I will fight to keep taxes and regulation low and work to encourage investment.”
The NRA released an endorsement of Habeeb, giving an “AQ” – the highest rating possible for a first time candidate. A spokesman for the NRA said they are endorsing Habeeb because he is “a pro Second Amendment, pro hunting candidate who supports the rights of gun owners and sportsmen in Virginia.”
Habeeb says he is a conservative Republican, but also says he understands the need for bipartisanship. He wants to work for “more accountability and transparency and will protect the Second Amendment.”
“Ultimately, it’s not about Republican or Democrat, it is about working for the people of Salem and Roanoke County,” says Habeeb.
This is Habeeb’s first campaign for public office and he says things have gotten off to a fast start. “We have a ton of momentum. People have been unbelievably supportive and I am really grateful for all the work people are doing,” he says.