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New Offices: A Fifth Term Launch Pad

Last week was significant for both Mount Vernon District Supervisor Gerald W. Hyland and his constituents. He moved into a new office suite and announced he would like to occupy that space for another four years.

On April 30, after nearly two years in offices on the second floor of the Fairfax County Regional Library on Sherwood Hall Lane, Hyland and the majority of his staff moved to their new location at 2511 Parkers Lane. Rose Lambert, Hyland's chief of staff, has been working from the new space since earlier this year.

Hyland's re-election announcement occurred at the Mount Vernon Council of Citizens Associations gala in an almost spontaneous manner. "I will ask the voters of the Mount Vernon District to allow me to continue to represent them," he declared in a brief statement.

It occurred as he recognized Col. Marion L. "Barney" Barnwell as Mount Vernon District Citizen of the Year, the prime reason for the event, and presented James Cossey with a surprise certificate of recognition for his efforts as chairman of the organization's transportation committee. Hyland honored Cossey for his volunteerism and ability to "forge consensus" from situations that often appear irreconcilable.

Hyland has served as Mount Vernon District's supervisor for the past 16 years. In making his declaration he noted that tenure has been one of the most gratifying times of his life. "It has been a real pleasure," he said.

A NATIVE New Englander, Hyland brought an old tradition of that region to the local political scene with the introduction of his annual "Town Meeting." An all day forum to bring government to the people and people to the government. It has since been copied by many of his colleagues on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.

Hyland had delayed moving his offices into the new Mount Vernon District Government Center so the Fairfax County Police Department's Mount Vernon Station, which is also an occupant, could utilize his space while the finishing touches were being put on the building renovations.

"The completed police space was really inadequate for their needs and we don't need the additional space at the present time as much as they do," Hyland had stated at the time the Mount Vernon District Police Station was only partially completed. "I thought they ought to use as much of the space in the Supervisor's area as they need. We aren't pressed."

ORGINALLY, completion of the entire building was scheduled for June 2003. However, the supervisor's new office suite received its finishing touches within the past month.

Earlier this year, the Virginia Association of Counties honored Hyland's year as their president by planting a magnolia tree and placing a plaque outside his new office suite. In acknowledging the gift, he said, "This tree represents all that is wonderful about Mount Vernon."

Only the address has changed. The main telephone number, 703-780-7518, TTY, 703-780-3642, fax number, 703-780-1491, and e-mail address, mtvernon@fairfaxcounty.gov., all remain the same. Office hours, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, are as they have been.

A RETIRED U.S. Navy Rear Admiral, Cossey spearheaded the Stakeholder Participation Panel that recently resolved the dispute over increased parking at Mount Vernon Estate. His committee has dealt with such diversified issues as the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Replacement Project, pedestrian safety along Richmond Highway, and aircraft noise abatement.

Hyland had a resolution passed by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors citing Cossey as typifying "volunteerism at its best." He and his wife are leaving the Mount Vernon area to reside in their vacation home in Maine.