Richard Joseph Davis

Richard Joseph Davis
34th Lieutenant Governor of Virginia
In office
January 16, 1982  January 18, 1986
Governor Charles S. Robb
Preceded by Charles S. Robb
Succeeded by L. Douglas Wilder
Mayor of Portsmouth, Virginia
In office
Preceded by Jack P. Barnes
Succeeded by Julian E. Johansen
Personal details
Born Richard Joseph Davis Jr.
(1921-08-07)August 7, 1921
Portsmouth, Virginia, U.S.
Died March 4, 1999(1999-03-04) (aged 77)
Portsmouth, Virginia, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Martha
Alma mater College of William & Mary
University of Virginia
Religion Roman Catholic
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch United States Marine Corps
Years of service 1942–1946
Rank Major
Battles/wars World War II
Korean War

Richard Joseph "Dick" Davis Jr. (August 7, 1921 March 4, 1999)[1] was the 34th Lieutenant Governor of Virginia from 1982 to 1986 serving under Governor Chuck Robb.[2] A former mayor of Portsmouth, Virginia, Davis' 1981 election as Lieutenant Governor saw him win 8 of the 10 Congressional Districts composing Virginia in 1981; his statewide margin of victory over Republican state senator Nathan H. Miller was 150,000 votes.[3] In 1982, Davis ran for the United States Senate, but lost to Republican candidate Paul S. Trible Jr.[4]

Davis had the distinction of being the first Catholic elected to a statewide office in Virginia history.[2] Davis would remain the only statewide Catholic elected in Virginia history until the 2001 Virginia General Elections, when Tim Kaine was elected Lieutenant Governor, the same office Davis once held. Four years later, in the 2005 Virginia General elections, history was made again when Kaine won the governor's race and Bob McDonnell won the attorney general's race.[5] The elections of Kaine and McDonnell created a new record in Virginia history at that time: two Catholics elected to statewide offices.[2]

While Lieutenant Governor, Davis served in the executive branch with two fellow Democrats: Attorney General Gerald Baliles, who would be elected Governor in 1985; and Governor Chuck Robb, who had preceded Davis as Lieutenant Governor.


  1. "House Joint Resolution No. 130". Virginia Legislature. January 28 – February 3, 2000. Retrieved 5 April 2013.
  2. 1 2 3 Natasha Altamirano (11 January 2006). "Religion also guides Bolling and McDonnell". The Free Lance Star. Retrieved 5 April 2013.
  3. Larry Sabato. "The 1981 Gubernatorial Election In Virginia" (PDF). Cooper Center. Retrieved 30 October 2013.
  4. "VA US Senate Race". Our Campaigns. Retrieved 5 April 2013.
  5. "Commonwealth of Virginia November 8th 2005 General Election". Retrieved 5 April 2013.
Political offices
Preceded by
Chuck Robb
Lieutenant Governor of Virginia
Succeeded by
Douglas Wilder

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