A junior at Stanford, Valerie McKinnon is quietly one of the brightest stars of the school's economics program. She also quietly helps run the Lesbian/Bisexual/Questioning group on campus; a position which allows her to devote certain of her energies to the Edge of the Labrys as well. Vala's own orientation is uncertain, as no one has ever seen her involved with a woman or a man. An extraordinarily private person, she is a model of creative efficiency.
Tall and gangly in her mortal seeming, Vala has long, blonde hair and a wardrobe straight out of a Laura Ashley catalog. Always proper, she carries a briefcase and wears thick-framed black glasses. Impeccably organized, she has been dubbed the "Font of Pencils" by all who know her, as she always seems to have three or four extra in her briefcase. In her fae mien, her hair seems to shadow all of her face except her eyes, and her awkwardness melts into an oddly insect-like dexterity.
Vala listens until whomever she's with has run themselves down, then turns loose her sarcasm. A maximum of two sentences is usually enough to get her point across. She is well aware of the value of information, far more so, she suspects, than most of the people with whom she is dealing. This is, of course, an advantage she will use to the fullest for the sake of the Labrys, as well as her own, personal goals. Fortunately, the two tend to coincide.