James Vell Rives IV

Key Facts

Party N/A; nonpartisan election
Status Challenger


James Vell Rives IV obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Alabama, majoring in music and earned his medical degree from the University of Alabama, Birmingham. Rives is currently the co-chair of the Arlington County Public Schools School Health Advisory Board. Rives has practiced psychiatry in Northern Virginia for over 15 years, and he has served as a clinical instructor in psychiatry for Johns Hopkins University’s and Georgetown University’s Schools of Medicine [3].

Key Issues


Rives believes his perspective as a physician and his experience as a mental health professional are necessary in order to best recover from the COVID-19 pandemic [1].


Rives wants to keep schools open in order for students to catch up on skills, and wants to ensure the school system retains its teachers [2]. He plans to return to rigorous instruction, including graded homework and emphasis on reading, math, and core subjects [4].

Mental Health

Rives supports redirecting resources to address anxiety and other mental health issues [4].


Rives hopes to implement aggressive early intervention to change the trajectory for students using drugs [4].


Rives is in favor of a systemwide “Away for the Day” policy for students’ personal devices. He is also against student removal and/or prosecution and prefers in-school suspension and county juvenile diversion programs [4].

School Safety

Rives wants to revise the agreement with ACPD immediately to allow officers to be assigned to schools [4].


No endorsements could be found.


1 Patch
2 ARLnow
3 Shugarman Psychiatric 
4 Rives for Arlington School Board
5 The Washington Post