Sunday, February 17th, 2019

Roland Davis Story


Team player for Chesapeake City Council with vision of technology for city’s future

by Kymberly Bach

From left: John Langlois, Stephanie Danner, Adrienne Danner,  <BR>Scott Danner,  Teresa Davis,  and Kathy Danner

From left: John Langlois, Stephanie Danner, Adrienne Danner,
Scott Danner, Teresa Davis, and Kathy Danner

Roland Davis’ extensive background in developing businesses, jobs, and opportunities for growth has been on loan to the City of Chesapeake’s City Council for the last four years. His business acumen in finance, technology and marketing has been instrumental in helping bring positive change to Chesapeake. And yet, challenges in his personal life have kept him grounded and aware of what’s important.

Ten years ago, Roland and his wife, Teresa, received news that stopped them in their tracks - she was diagnosed with breast cancer. “Going through a major crisis like that brings one out on the other side realizing what is really valuable. It was an experience that changed me,” Roland says.
“It helped me realize that I was very involved in the financial and business worlds but only somewhat involved in the community. That had a profound effect on what I thought I should do; it brought me back to my Eagle Scout days where I had learned the importance of community involvement. Before Teresa’s diagnosis, using the skills that I brought from my business experiences to help the community hadn’t been a big part of my life. Now, I am enormously involved in the community again, and I thoroughly enjoy it. Teresa is doing great and I’ve come full circle,” Roland smiles.

Roland considers his awards as First Citizen of Chesapeake 2013 and Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce Chesapeake Volunteer of the Year 2014 among his highest honors. “I was very privileged to have received these awards,” he emphasizes.

From left: Teresa and Roland Davis with children Matthew, Christopher and Sarah Davis.

From left: Teresa and Roland Davis with children Matthew, Christopher and Sarah Davis.

And being a volunteer co-chair of the Chesapeake Wine Festival with his nephew, Scott Danner, was one of the highlights of his experiences. He is particularly proud of Scott, whom he feels personifies his generation in community involvement. “The festival has distributed over $1.5 million to charities since 2010, and would not be what it is today without our Chesapeake Rotary Club and the hundreds of volunteers,” Roland remarks.

Chesapeake has seen a growing investment in the community and improved quality of life for its citizens. “Four years ago, I ran for City Council because I wanted to get things done for the schools, the roads, recreation and jobs. I am thrilled to see Mt. Pleasant Road widening, Oscar Smith and Hickory High School additions, Great Bridge and Chittum Elementary being replaced, plus major renovations to our parks. With For Kids Headquarters in South Norfolk, Chesapeake Square Mall renewal and the Dollar Tree Town Center starting, Chesapeake’s future is now,” Roland explains.

One of his current undertakings is the broadband project. Its goal is to maximize the opportunity available to Hampton Roads with the arrival of the transatlantic cables from Brazil, South Africa, Norway, and Egypt. Then, via the construction of a state of the art fiber ring, Hampton Roads will become a digital port to the world that will act as a catalyst for national private broadband companies to invest in the Hampton Roads marketplace of 1.7 million people. This will result in the community having competitive ultra high speed internet at the lowest possible prices.

“I know how to budget, control costs, invest,
and how to get bottom line results.
I will get things done for the city,
pure and simple.”

—Roland Davis

“In synchrony with the fiber ring, we are working with the private sector to provide ‘wireless for all,’ or blanket wireless. With this new technology, wireless would be available to almost anyone, anywhere in Chesapeake. Rural areas where major carriers don’t go will be able to access the internet, and individuals who can’t afford WiFi will no longer be in a ‘digital divide,’” Roland continues. “More technological jobs will be drawn to our area; benefits like tele-medicine, distance learning, and the ability to work remotely are a few of the potential results of this project. It will make Hampton Roads tremendously advanced, and for the first time all 17 municipalities have endorsed this project.”   

At right: Teresa and Roland’s son, Joey, with his wife Brooke, <BR> who were unable to attend the campaign event

At right: Teresa and Roland’s son, Joey, with his wife Brooke,
who were unable to attend the campaign event

Family is very important to Roland. Early in his career, he purchased a division of Landmark Communications that he owned and operated for 12 years. But he really wanted to spend time with his kids, Sarah, Joey, Matthew, and Christopher. At the time, the eldest was getting ready to start high school. Roland felt the time was right to retire from that particular business venture.

“I really wanted to spend the kids’ formative years with them, and we did everything together,” he reflects. “It was a wonderful time in my life.”

After about four years or so, he decided to research a new opportunity and formed Davis Business Appraisers. Still with family at the forefront of his thoughts, the incorporated name of the business was Sajomach, a combination of the first two letters of each of the children’s names.

Davis Business Appraisers specializes in mergers, business valuations, business acquisitions, and ownership consulting. Roland assesses the financial value of assets in transactions such as the gifting of shares, sale of a company privately or to existing shareholders, or even the division of assets in a divorce.

Roland Davis, Chesapeake First Citizen 2013

Roland Davis, Chesapeake First Citizen 2013

Roland is a strong believer in transparency. To assist in making every effort for full disclosure, he sends out an e-newsletter every Friday conveying the same information he receives as a City Council member. If a vote was taken on a particular issue, he explains how and why he voted a particular way to share his perspective with the public. The e-newsletter is free and available to anyone who would like to receive it.

“I enjoy being able to make a difference by pulling people together,” Roland affirms. “Chesapeake is an important player in the region and I believe the city needs more influence in regional representation. I hope my work, especially in the broadband project, illustrates that I’m willing to go across party lines and to engage aggressively with the business community to get things done,” he emphasizes.

“I do this because I want to, not because I have to, and I come with an independent commitment to do the right thing for all citizens,” Roland insists. “My success in business and the civic arena provides the financial understanding with fiscal responsibility and profitable innovation. We will achieve higher revenues, lower costs and lower taxes. I know how to budget, control costs, invest and how to get bottom line results. I will get things done for the city, pure and simple.”

Friends of Roland Davis