Stacey Plaskett

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Stacey Plaskett
Stacey Plaskett 116th Congress.jpg
Delegate to the
U.S. House of Representatives
from the U.S. Virgin Islands' at-large district
Assumed office
January 3, 2015
Preceded byDonna Christian-Christensen
General Counsel of the Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority
In office
GovernorJohn de Jongh Jr.
Personal details
Born (1966-05-13) May 13, 1966 (age 54)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Jonathan Buckney Small
EducationGeorgetown University (BS)
American University (JD)
WebsiteHouse website

Stacey E. Plaskett[1] /ˈplæskɪt/ (born May 13, 1966) is an American politician, attorney and commentator who is currently the 5th Delegate to the United States House of Representatives from the United States Virgin Islands' at-large congressional district. She is a member of the Democratic Party.

Plaskett has practiced law in New York City, Washington, D.C., and the U.S. Virgin Islands. She is known for her understanding[citation needed] of Caribbean economic development and public-private partnerships for growing the economy of developing areas.

Early life[edit]

Plaskett was born on May 13, 1966 in Brooklyn, New York.[2] Her parents are both from Saint Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands, and moved to New York in the 1950s during the large migration of Virgin Islanders seeking economic opportunity. Plaskett grew up in the Bushwick, New York housing projects. Her father was a New York City police officer and her mother a clerk in the court system. Plaskett lived in the John F. Kennedy housing community on St. Croix during her early childhood as her family regularly returned to the Virgin Islands during her childhood. Her parents' home in New York was often home for students and other recent migrants moving to the mainland from the Virgin Islands. Plaskett attended Brooklyn Friends (a Quaker School) and Grace Lutheran for elementary school. She was recruited by A Better Chance, Inc. a non-profit organization recruiting minority students to selective secondary schools. Plaskett was a student at the boarding school, Choate Rosemary Hall, where she was a varsity athlete and served as class president for several years.

Plaskett spent a term abroad during her time in France. She often states that Choate awakened her commitment to public service and a deep sense of responsibility to others through the biblical verse "to whom much is given; much is required". She was one of the few black students while she attended the school and felt an enormous responsibility to speak out for and be a credit to her race while in high school. She graduated with a degree in History and Diplomacy from the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University in 1988 where she was accepted under the early decision program.[3]

Plaskett ran for student government at Georgetown under a progressive student ticket and was very active in the Anti-Apartheid Movement. As a student she spoke on behalf of universities in the DC area at the General Assembly of the United Nations. She received her J.D. degree from American University Washington College of Law. Plaskett attended law school at night while she worked full-time during the day with the lobbying arm of the American Medical Association and then with the law firm, Jones Day. At the time of graduation she had 3 sons who were under the age of 5. Her oldest son was born during her senior year at Georgetown, her second in between law school, and the third son during her second year of law school.


After graduating from law school, Plaskett was an Assistant District Attorney in the Bronx, New York. She prosecuted several hundred cases and was eventually in the Narcotics Bureau. She then worked as a consultant and legal counsel focused on internal corporate investigations and strategy for the Mitchell Madison Group, a spin-off from McKinsey & Company. Plaskett moved to Washington, DC and worked as counsel on the US House of Representatives, Committee on Standards of Official Conduct; the Ethics Committee. Plaskett left the Committee when she was asked by mentor and fellow trustee at Choate, Robert McCallum (later Ambassador to Australia) to work at the Justice Department as a political appointee.

She served as Counsel for the Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division, and also as Acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Torts Branch in the Civil Division. Plaskett then worked on the staff of Deputy Attorney General Larry Thompson, primarily working on the Justice Honors program and an initiative to increase the number of minority and women attorney's at the Justice Department. While in the Justice Civil Division, she also worked on the Terrorism Litigation Task Force and the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund.

During her time at Justice her boss, Larry Thompson, resigned and was replaced by James Comey, who opted to retain Plaskett. Plaskett left government to be a deputy general counsel at United Health Group, where she worked in the Medicaid/Medicare division: Americhoice under the leadership of Anthony Welters. She then relocated full-time to her ancestral home of the US Virgin Islands and worked in the private sector and then with the Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority. There she worked on tax incentive programs and public private partnerships trying to bring economic growth to the development of the territory.

U.S. House of Representatives[edit]



In 2012, Plaskett challenged nine-term delegate Donna Christian-Christensen in the Democratic Party Primary. Plaskett was unsuccessful, receiving 42.49% of the vote to Christian-Christensen's 57.48%.[4]


In 2014, Plaskett ran for the office again, after formally declaring her candidacy in November 2013. In the Democratic Primary held on August 2, she faced Shawn-Micheal Malone, a Virgin Islands Senator, and Senate President, and Emmett Hansen, a former Virgin Islands Senator and Former chair of the Democratic Party of the Virgin Islands. She received 50.4% of the vote to Malone's 41.61% and Hansen's 7.92%.[5] She later faced Republican Vince Danet in the General Election held on November 4. She received over 90% of the vote.[6]


Plaskett was challenged in the Democratic Party Primary by former Virgin Islands Senator Ronald Russell. Plaskett defeated Russell in the primary with 85.48% of the vote to his 14.04%.[7] In the general election, she faced Republican Gordon Ackley, an Air Force veteran and business owner, who ran as a write-in candidate.[8] Plaskett won the election in a landslide, garnering almost 98% of the vote.[9]


Plaskett at the White House Correspondents Dinner, 2019

Plaskett won re-election unopposed in either the Democratic primary or the general election.[10]

Committee assignments[edit]

116th Congress
Past memberships

Caucus memberships[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Plaskett is married to Jonathan Buckney Small, a community activist and former professional tennis player.[14] She has five children.[15] She sits on numerous non-profit boards focused primarily on education, culture and community development.

In July 2017, former staffers of Plaskett, Juan R. McCullum and Dorene Browne-Louis, were charged with offenses relating to illegally publishing nude photographs and videos of Plaskett and her husband.[16][17][18] According to the indictment, McCullum – then Plaskett's legislative counsel – copied the media from Plaskett's iPhone while taking it in for repairs, and then circulated the material using a Facebook account.[19][20]

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Representative Stacey E. Plaskett (1966 - )".
  3. ^ "Stacey Plaskett (F'88) Honored with Samuel A. Halsey Jr. Award". Georgetown University. Retrieved July 15, 2017.
  4. ^ "Stacey Plaskett Running for Delegate". Retrieved January 18, 2015.
  5. ^ "SUMMARY REPORT USVI PRIMARY UNOFFICIAL RESULTS". August 2, 2014. Archived from the original on September 11, 2014. Retrieved December 4, 2015.
  6. ^ Lewin, Aldeth. "Stacey Plaskett Wins Race for Delegate to Congress". Archived from the original on November 8, 2014. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on September 17, 2016. Retrieved August 17, 2016.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ "Virgin Islands 2016 General Election". Retrieved July 15, 2017.
  9. ^
  10. ^ "13 GU Alumni Seek Congressional Seats". The Hoya. November 6, 2018. Retrieved November 16, 2018.
  11. ^ "Members". New Democrat Coalition. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
  12. ^ "Membership". Congressional Black Caucus. Retrieved March 7, 2018.
  13. ^ "90 Current Climate Solutions Caucus Members". Citizen´s Climate Lobby. Retrieved October 20, 2018.
  14. ^ Laverty, Rory; Laporta, James (July 14, 2017). "Congresswoman Stacey Plaskett Opens Up About Being a Revenge Porn Victim". The Daily Beast. Buckney-Small is a popular community activist and former professional tennis player, and Plaskett is the Virgin Islands' lone delegate to the U.S. Congress.
  15. ^ Ferguson, Amber (July 21, 2016). "Hackers Post 'Private' Photos, Video Of Democratic Delegate Online". The Huffington Post. The mother of five children, who won her seat in 2014, is currently running for re-election against St. Thomas businessman Gordon Ackley and lawyer Ronald Russell.
  16. ^ Connolly, Griffon (July 13, 2017). "Former House Staffers Indicted Over Nude Image Distribution". Roll Call. Retrieved July 14, 2017. The bank of images circulated online included a topless "selfie" of Plaskett and a video in which her husband appears naked and wearing makeup.
  17. ^ Theobald, Bill (July 13, 2017). "Former staffers charged with distributing nude photos of House member". USA Today. Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  18. ^ Bresnahan, Josh; Isenstadt, Alex (July 21, 2016). "'Private' video of Virgin Islands Democratic delegate posted online". Politico.
  19. ^ Hsu, Spencer S. (July 13, 2017). "Two former staffers charged in cyberstalking of U.S. House member, husband". The Washington Post. Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  20. ^ USAO - District of Columbia (July 13, 2017). "Two Former Employees of House Member Indicted On Federal Charges in Cyberstalking Case". United States Department of Justice. Archived from the original on July 15, 2017. Retrieved July 14, 2017.

External links[edit]

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Donna Christian-Christensen
Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives
from the Virgin Islands' at-large congressional district

U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Gregorio Sablan
United States Delegates by seniority
Succeeded by
Amata Coleman Radewagen