Virginia B. Valentine
Virginia Bax Valentine graduated in 1980 from the University of Idaho with a Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering and earned a Masters of Public Administration from the University of Nevada Las Vegas, Phi Alpha Alpha (The National Honor Society for Public Affairs and Administration) in 2000.
During the summer of her junior year at Idaho, Valentine did an internship for the City of Salem, in Salem, Ore. She worked as a construction inspector for offsite improvements and became certified to conduct nuclear density tests.
After graduation, Valentine started her first job at JUB Engineers in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho as a design engineer. She designed rural water and wastewater treatment systems including several pump stations.
She served as resident engineer for the construction of a river intake system, water treatment plan, reservoirs, and the water distribution system for the Three Mile Water District in Bonner’s Ferry, Idaho.
In August of 1981, Valentine moved to Las Vegas, Nevada where she went to work as a design engineer for VTN Nevada, Las Vegas, Nevada. She worked on the design of land development projects including grading and drainage plans, prepared flood studies, and designed infrastructure for land development projects including waste water collection systems, roadways, waterlines, and drainage systems.
Two years later, Valentine joined URS Consulting Engineers in Las Vegas as a project engineer for wastewater treatment and pumping systems. She worked on resident engineering on the Henderson, Nevada Wastewater Treatment Plan.
In 1984, Valentine moved to Black and Veatch Consulting Engineers in Las Vegas as a project engineer for environmental projects including feasibility, planning, design, and construction management. She managed the first comprehensive study of the Tropicana and Flamingo Hotel washes in Clark County.
Valentine became the first chief engineer and general manager of the Clark County Regional Flood Control District in Las Vegas in 1986. As general manager of a newly created agency, she developed all the District’s programs including master planning, capital improvement, flood plain management regulations, flood warning system, and the District’s first National Pollutant Discharge Elimination storm water discharge permit. She was successful in gaining authorization and appropriations for a $250 million federal project with the USACE.
In 1993, Valentine became a senior vice president of Post, Buckley, Schuh and Jernigan, (PBSJ) a national consulting engineering firm. At PBSJ, Valentine was responsible for overseeing the Public Works and Environmental Divisions in the Western Region. Her job included environmental services such as flood control and water resources projects from planning through construction. She was responsible for budgeting and management for environmental services in the region and managed multimillion dollar design and construction projects for flood control, transportation, and utilities. She was the principal in charge for the program management services provided to the City of North Las Vegas, instituted the GIS division within the environmental services in the western region and was the project manager for the first fully GIS Flood Control Master Plan for the Las Vegas Valley.
Valentine became the city manager for the City of Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Nevada in 1998. The City of Las Vegas has 16 departments, 2,800 employees, and in FY 2002 a combined budget of $740 million. At that time the City of Las Vegas was one of the fastest-growing cities in the country and had over 600,000 residents. The city has a council/manager form of government and Valentine reported to the mayor and city council.
Four years later, Valentine became the senior vice president of the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce, Las Vegas, Nevada. She was responsible for the Government Affairs Department including state and local government lobbying on business issues and represented the chamber at the 2003 special session of the legislature.
Valentine was appointed as assistant county manager for Clark County in November of 2002. In that capacity she oversaw numerous county departments including air quality and environmental management, assessor, comprehensive planning, development services, fire, public works, redevelopment, real property management, recorder and water reclamation. During her tenure at the county, she was previously assigned to oversee the Departments of Information Technology, Family Services, Public Guardian, Social Service, Parks & Community Services and Elections and University Medical Center. From 2002 to 2011, Valentine was the chief executive officer for Clark County, Nevada.
The county provides extensive regional and municipal-type services to over 2 million residents. In her position as the county’s chief executive officer, she was charged with carrying out the policies established by the seven member Board of County Commissioners. She provided administrative oversight for 38 diverse and geographically dispersed departments and agencies (including McCarran International Airport, University Medical Center of Southern Nevada, and the Clark County Water Reclamation District), and more than 12,100 full-time and 4,000 part-time employees. Approximately 900,000 residents live in the unincorporated area which includes the urban area including the Las Vegas Strip and several rural towns.
Valentine is currently the president of the Nevada Resort Association (NRA). The NRA is an industry trade association representing Nevada’s resort/casino industry. The NRA is involved in state and local regulations, lawmaking, and policies effecting gaming.
Valentine has received the following honors and awards:
- Woman of Distinction Award (WODA) in Government, 2010
- Honored by HELP of Southern Nevada, Women in Non-Traditional Roles, 2009
- ASCE Civil Government Award 2008, national award for professional achievement, 2008
- One of the 50 Most Influential People in Southern Nevada, In Business Las Vegas magazine, 2008
- Listed as an extraordinary woman engineer in Changing Our World: True Stories of Women Engineers, 2006
- The book was launched at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 21, 2006
- One of the 20 Most Influential Women in Nevada (In Business Las Vegas Magazine), 2000
- “Woman and Youth Award” (Las Vegas Boys and Girls Club), 1996
- “Woman of Achievement” in Science (Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce), 1993
- ASCE Engineer of the Year in Government (Southern Nevada Branch), 1990
- ASCE “Edmund Friedman Young Engineer” National Award for Professional Achievement, 1988
- Finalist for Woman of the Year in Government (Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce), 1987
- NSPE Young Engineer of the Year (Nevada), 1984
- NSPE Young Engineer of the Year (Southern Nevada), 1983