Councilwoman Alyia Gaskins
Alyia Gaskins, a tenacious fighter for families, communities, and health equity, was elected to City Council in 2021 and is serving her first three-year term. She is dedicated to building a healthier, more prosperous Alexandria for all.
Alyia represents the Council on several local and regional boards, including: Audit and Finance Committee; Health and Safety Coordinating Committee; Inova Alexandria Hospital Task Force; Landmark Community Development Authority Board of Directors; City Naming Committee; Gang Prevention Community Task Force; Children, Youth and Families Collaborative Commission; Local Emergency Planning Committee; Council of Governments: Public Safety and Human Services Committee; Council of Governments Region Forward Coalition; Council of Governments: Regional Transportation Planning Board; and the Northern Virginia Regional Commission.
As a public health strategist and city planner, Alyia has worked on hunger policy at D.C. Hunger Solutions and health issues at the National League of Cities, as well as managing an affordable housing investment program at the Center for Community Investment. Currently, she is a Senior Program Officer at the Melville Charitable Trust, a national philanthropic organization devoted to ending homelessness, where she leads efforts to advance housing justice through better land use policies. Her consulting business, CitiesRX, focuses on building physical, social, and economic health through community partnerships.
Alyia has long been committed to using her personal experience and extensive professional expertise to advance policies and systems that make communities work for everyone. Prior to her election to City Council, she served on the Virginia Fair Housing Board, the Alexandria Transportation Commission, the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Government Relations Committee, the Hunger Free Alexandria Steering Committee, Agenda Alexandria, Women of Color in Community Development Board of Directors, and the Good Shepherd Housing Leadership Council. She also volunteers with her church, National Community Church.
Alyia understands both how stable jobs, good schools, and affordable housing positively affect health and how to advance policies and programs to ensure all families can access these critical resources. She attended Vanderbilt University, where she majored in medicine, health, and society, and later went to the University of Pittsburgh, where she earned a master’s degree in public health. More recently, she honed her policy chops with a master’s in urban planning at Georgetown and earned a Professional Certificate in Municipal Finance from the University of Chicago.
Alyia lives on the West End with her husband, son, and beagle.