ALEXANDRIA, VA – The Campagna Center is pleased to announce that Earl Cook, Alexandria’s Chief of Police, will serve as the Grand Marshal for the 39th Annual Scottish Christmas Walk Parade. The Parade—presented by The Campagna Center, the St. Andrew’s Society, and the City of Alexandria—will be held on Saturday, December 5, 2009 in Old Town Alexandria.
“I am excited to launch the holiday season in Alexandria by participating in the Scottish Christmas Walk,” said Chief Cook. “I am truly honored to serve as Grand Marshal, and look forward to celebrating with members of the Alexandria community.”
As Grand Marshal, Cook will lead more than 120 Scottish Clans, pipe and drum bands, Scottish dancers, re-enactment groups, canine marchers, local dignitaries and, of course, Santa Claus, through the streets of Old Town. The Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend launches Alexandria’s holiday season with events to celebrate and honor Alexandria’s Scottish founders.
“The Campagna Center is honored and excited to welcome Chief Cook as the Grand Marshal of our 39th Annual Scottish Christmas Walk Parade,” said Campagna Center President and CEO Karen Hughes. “As a native Alexandrian and former ACPS student, we are thrilled that Earl will help us celebrate our community’s rich heritage and kick off the holiday season. His local roots make him a perfect Grand Marshal!”
A 30-year veteran of the Alexandria Police Department, Chief Cook assumed the position of Police Chief in August 2009. He was the first African-American police captain and is now the first African-American Chief of Police in the City’s 260-year history.
Born and raised in Alexandria, Chief Cook grew up on Princess Street and attended Lyles-Crouch Elementary School, Parker-Gray Middle School, and George Washington High School through tenth grade. He then transferred to T.C. Williams High School, where he was a member of the historic Titans football team later depicted in the movie “Remember the Titans.” Cook graduated from Duke University with a bachelor’s degree in history and education. He currently resides in Alexandria and has three children and two grandchildren.
About the Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend
Consistently ranked by the Southeast Tourism Society as one of the Top 20 Events in the South, each year the Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend draws as many as 30,000 participants and families to the City of Alexandria. Over the years, the Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend has grown from a small, informal parade to an entire weekend filled with events and festivities. Today, in addition to the Scottish Walk Parade, weekend events include a children’s tea, a marketplace, the Holiday Designer Tour of Homes, and a scotch tasting—the Taste of Scotland. The Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend is The Campagna Center’s largest fundraising activity. For more information, visit www.ScottishChristmasWalk.com