Today City Manager Jim Bourey named Venerria “Ven” Lucas Thomas as Director of Human Services for the City of Newport News. She will begin her new position in September with an annual salary of $145,000. Ms. Thomas will oversee a staff of more than 375 and an annual operating budget of nearly $33 million. She is replacing Glenn Butler who retired in June. Deputy Director Rosanne Walters has been serving as Interim Director since Butler’s retirement.
Ms. Thomas currently serves as Director of Family and Aging Services for Hillsborough County, Florida having previously served as Director of Health and Human Services for St. Johns County, Florida. Additionally, Ms. Thomas has held other leadership positions with the Seattle Human Services Department, Seattle City Council staff, Senior Services, Zion Preparatory Academy, North Shore Senior Center, Group Health Permanente, and The Seattle Monorail Project among others. She holds bachelor’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and an MBA from Willamette University.
“We are delighted to have Ven join the City’s management team as director of human services,” said City Manager Jim Bourey. “Her vast experience and her leadership in the human services field will prove to be an asset to this organization as she leads this vital city department.”
Ms. Thomas said, "I am so impressed by the vision, energy and dedication I witnessed among the City's staff and leadership. This is the beginning of an exciting new chapter and I couldn't be more thrilled about joining the City of Newport News."
Bourey continued, “Rosanne’s excellent leadership and outstanding support have been invaluable during this period of transition and I want to thank her serving as interim director.”
The Newport News Department of Human Services is dedicated to improving the quality of life of residents through education, community partnerships and agency health, safety and employment programs.