The Library of Virginia is pleased to announce the release of an additional 44,534 emails from the administration of Governor Timothy M. Kaine (2006-2010). This second batch comprises emails from individuals in Kaine’s Policy and Communication/Press Offices. Since January 2014, the Library has made 110,956 of the approximately 1.3 million emails from the Kaine administration freely available to the public online.
The Kaine administration online collection is arranged alphabetically by administration staff member and is full-text searchable. The email messages reveal the real-time reactions of the governor’s policy and communication staff members to the issues facing the commonwealth. Whether tracking legislation, coordinating projects funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, implementing the governor’s education initiatives, or weighing in on drafts of the governor’s speeches to the Joint Money Committees of the General Assembly, the emails reveal the behind-the-scenes strategizing and communication among the governor and his staff.
Included in the Policy Office release (23,004 emails) are the email files of Steven Gould, Suzette Denslow, Felix Sarfo-Kantanka, Gena Boyle, Jennie Moline, Maribel Ramos, Megan Root, and Barbara Reese. The Communication/Press Office release (21,530 emails) includes the email files of Lynda Tran, Jeff Kraus, Gordon Hickey, Michael Kelly, and Amanda Howe.
This release of electronic materials and the availability of the paper records of the Kaine administration in the Library of Virginia’s reading room broaden the Library’s historic access to the records of the commonwealth’s chief executive, going back to our first governor, Patrick Henry (1776–1779). As with the records of every modern governor, the Kaine materials were reviewed according to guidance set forth in § 2.2-126 of the Code of Virginia and the Office of the Governor Records Retention and Disposition Schedule.
On the advice of the Office of the Attorney General, messages pertaining to the aftermath of the Virginia Tech shooting will not be opened until the final resolution of all litigation relating to the tragedy. Some of these records may be kept confidential longer as a result of terms of settlement agreements. More information on these processes is available on the Kaine Email Project website.
The Library expects to release e-mail from the Kaine administration in several phases by office or secretariat as soon as the Library’s archival staff has finished processing the material per Code of Virginia § 2.2-126 and § 42.1-78. Some records may remain closed based on other provisions of the Code, such as the Virginia Government Data Collection and Dissemination Practices Act and the Virginia Health Records Privacy Act. The next release of approximately 20,000 e-mails from the offices of the Secretary of the Commonwealth and the Secretary of Technology is planned for summer 2014.
-Roger Christman, LVA Senior State Records Archivist