The Valentine Begins 10th Year of Community Conversations

September 28, 2022

Meredith Mason, APR
Director of Public Relations & Marketing

The Valentine Begins 10th Year of Community Conversations

RICHMOND – The Valentine is launching its 10th year of community conversations known as “Controversy/History.” In the 2022-2023 series, the Valentine will revisit the most controversial, heavy-hitting topics that are still relevant today, including health, transportation, housing, education and public spaces.

“Richmond keeps growing and evolving, but many of the core problems facing our community persist throughout our history,” Director Bill Martin said. “We’re excited to bring people together again to talk through some of these issues and how we can improve life in Richmond.”

Martin will co-host the series with Richmond entrepreneur and consultant Kelli Lemon. Controversy/History will run on the first Tuesday of the month from October-February, with each event featuring a panel of experts, advocates and government representatives. Many popular speakers from past Controversy/History events will return to give updates.

The first Controversy/History on “Disease and Disparity” will take place Tuesday, October 4 from 5:30 – 7:00 p.m. at the Valentine. Speakers for the kickoff event are:

  • Margo Webb, Director of Community Programs, Richmond City and Henrico County Health Districts
  • Gonzalo Bearman, Chair, VCU Division of Infectious Diseases
  • Karen Legato, Executive Director, Health Brigade

The full 2022-2023 schedule is below. As the Valentine will be under construction starting in mid-October, all other Controversy/History events will be held throughout the Richmond region. Locations will be announced in the coming weeks.

Disease & Disparity
Tuesday, October 4, 2022 | 5:30 – 7:00 p.m.
The Valentine

Where Are We Going? Changes in Transportation
Tuesday, November 1, 2022 | 5:30-7:00 p.m.
Location TBD

The Crisis at our Doorstep: Housing in RVA
Tuesday, December 6, 2022 | 5:30-7:00 p.m.
Location TBD

Coming Up Short: Richmond Needs Schooling
Tuesday, January 3, 2023 | 5:30-7:00 p.m.
Location TBD

Public Spaces: Environmental Reckoning in Richmond
Tuesday, February 7, 2023 | 5:30-7:00 p.m.
Location TBD

Controversy/History is sponsored by Wells Fargo. More information and online registration for the kickoff event is available at General information about the series is available at



The Valentine has been collecting, preserving and interpreting Richmond’s 400-year history for over a century. Located in the heart of historic downtown, the Valentine is a place for residents and tourists to discover the diverse stories that tell the broader history of this important region.