David Baldacci honored as Virginian of the Year

The Virginia Press Association recently honored Virginia Commonwealth University alumnus and Board of Visitors member David Baldacci as Virginian of the Year.

David Baldacci

Photo courtesy of Rene Durand, Bergisch Gladbach
David Baldacci Photo courtesy of Rene Durand, Bergisch Gladbach

Baldacci received the award at the annual Associated Press Dinner/Virginian of the Year Banquet in Norfolk for his contributions to the state of Virginia as well as his philanthropy throughout the country with organizations such as the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the National Childhood Cancer Foundation and the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy.

He has published eight novels. One of them, "Absolute Power," was made into a major motion picture starring Clint Eastwood and Gene Hackman. Baldacci's other novels include "Total Control," "The Winner," "The Simple Truth," "Saving Faith," "Wish You Well," "Last Man Standing" and the "Christmas Train." More than 25 million copies of his books are in print worldwide and have been national and international best sellers.

A Richmond-area native, Baldacci received his Bachelor of Science degree in political science from VCU and his law degree from the University of Virginia. He practiced law in Washington D.C. for nine years as both a trial lawyer and corporate lawyer.

The Virginia Press Association has been honoring individuals as Virginian of the Year since 1967. Past honorees include Arthur Ashe, Patricia Cornwell, Sen. Harry Byrd, Gov. Mills Godwin, and Katherine Graham (posthumous).