John R. Eley, III


South District 3, Seat B | Term Expires December 31, 2026

Contact Information

Councilman Eley can be contacted by emailing City Council, calling 757-926-8618 or by mailing the address below.

City Council
City of Newport News
2400 Washington Avenue
Newport News, VA 23607
  1. Bio
  2. Associations

As a lifelong native of Southeast Newport News, Councilman John R. Eley, III has witnessed firsthand the rapid growth of our city, as well as the strong spirit of our citizens. A graduate of Menchville High School in Newport News, John is a former member of the Newport News School Board, an active member of the community, a local business owner, and the Director of the What’s Next Foundation. 

 Councilman Eley is a passionate advocate for career, technical, and arts education programs.  His priorities include workforce development, affordable housing, youth programming, economic development, and quality education. 

 As an elected official on the Newport News School Board, Councilman Eley led the integration of Arts into the STEM curriculum across elementary, middle, and high school levels, producing a STEAM focused educational program for the City of Newport News. This pioneered the introduction of new courses, including Music Production, Engineering, and Entrepreneurship into city schools. 

 During his tenure on the Newport News School Board, Councilman Eley was instrumental in implementing policies that directly increased the city’s graduation rate to 93.4% and decreased the dropout rate to 2.2%.  He also advocated that all employees of Newport News Public School System continue to receive consistent increases in annual wages and worked to ensure that all high schools in Newport News meet or exceed the state accreditation standards for Virginia. 

 Councilman Eley is the Director of What’s Next, an initiative that connects residents with workforce training to advance career preparation and financial stability. The program serves young people and adults of all ages in career readiness/entrepreneurship workshop series.   Bi-weekly meetings are held in the Southeast Community to connect citizens with community education providers, including Virginia Peninsula Community College and Hampton Roads Workforce Council. Residents are referred to workforce development programs that are tuition-free for Virginia residents whose income falls below 400% of the federal poverty level. 

 Councilman Eley has initiated anti-gang violence reduction programs throughout the city to make our community safer.  Through the iCount Program, participants receive mentorship, team building, youth development, and career placement supports.   Councilman Eley also developed relationships with local small businesses to bridge the gap between education and workforce development. 

 In addition to his significant public service activities, Councilman Eley enjoys volunteering in the community.  He regularly hosts toy drives and distribution events during the holidays, conducts food drives, leads and participates in stop the violence events, and helps program arts and STEM activities.