Gloucester orth reelection

Robert J. “JJ” Orth, Independent
Candidate for Gloucester Board of Supervisors, Abingdon District

JJ is a retired professor from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science, College of William and Mary. JJ moved to Gloucester in 1973. He is married to his wife, Nancy, who taught in Gloucester Public schools for 27 years. They are parents of two daughters, Jennifer and Leanna, both of whom graduated from Gloucester High School. Jennifer, who obtained her Ph.D. from Emory University, now heads the first year International Program for Georgia Tech in Metz, France. Leanna, who obtained her Nursing degree from UVA, and Nurse Practitioner degree from ODU, is a nurse practitioner in general surgery for TPMG in Newport News, VA. JJ and Nancy are grandparents of three boys and one girl. JJ is seeking re-election to the Board of Supervisors for the Abingdon District.


  • B. S. 1969, Rutgers University
  • M.S. 1971, University of Virginia
  • Ph.D. 1975, University of Maryland.

  • 1973 – 2021 Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS).
  • Professor Emeritus – 2021-present
  • Professor - Dept. of Biological Science (retired)
  • Assistant Director Biological and Fisheries Sciences – 1986-1992
  • Department Chair -Biological Sciences – 1992-1997, and 20104-2016.

Honors and Awards
  • Coastal Estuarine Research Federation’s prestigious Odum award for Lifetime
  • Achievement - Co winner with colleague Dr. Ken Heck, Dauphin Island Marine Lab. - 2021
  • Richmond Science Museum’s Outstanding Scientist in Virginia award - 2018
  • William and Mary Plumeri Award for Faculty Excellence - 2013
  • VIMS Outstanding Faculty Research Award -2012
  • Conservation of the Year award, Tidewater Chapter of the American Fisheries Society - 2007
  • Distinguished Service Award, Estuarine Research Federation - 1993

Professional Service
  • Coastal Estuarine Research Federation:
  • Member: 1977 to present
  • Treasurer: l985-l988
  • President: l989-l99l
  • Past President: l99l-l993
  • Involved in various subcommittees during my tenure as a member.

Community Work
  • Gloucester County Board of Supervisors, Abingdon District, 2011-2023 (involved in numerous committees, e.g., Utilities, Library, Economic Development.
  • Abingdon Volunteer Rescue Squad - Treasurer, President, Board of Directors, and Fund Drive Chair.
  • Gloucester Parks and Recreation - volunteered in t-ball, softball, and basketball.
  • Gloucester High School Athletic Boosters Club – president; inducted into the Gloucester High School Sports Hall of Fame in 2012 for being instrumental in the building of the High School Sports Complex.
  • Middle Peninsula chapter of the Virginia Master Naturalist Program - member.
  • Bethany United Methodist Church at Gloucester Point, member since 1977.

Goals if reelected
  • Continue to support, and work to attract small businesses in the county.
  • Continue to advocate for a balance between smart growth and maintaining the rural atmosphere of the county, an environment many of our current and future residents see as an important part of “Land of Life Worth Living”.
  • Advocate for a balanced budget and a tax rate that supports essential services to run the county effectively and efficiently and serve the citizens of Gloucester in a fair and equitable manner.
  • Advocate for schools, as good schools are what attract both businesses and newcomers with children to come to Gloucester.
  • Continue to support Gloucester’s volunteer fire and rescue squads, as well as Gloucester’s sheriff dept.
  • Continue to support recreational activities for both our youth and adults through our Parks and Recreation Department.
  • Support programs and policies to protect the environment, especially Chesapeake Bay and our local waters.