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Votes

Great Falls this Week

<sh>149-Count Indictment

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Attorney Sergei Danilov was indicted by a federal grand jury, which charged him with conspiracy to commit immigration fraud, according to a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement press release.

The 149-count indictment charges that Danilov, 44, of McLean, and three other defendants profited by preparing and filing fraudulent labor certification applications with the Department of Labor and fraudulent petitions for work visas, according to the release.

The indictment claims that the defendants "used fraudulent practices to thwart immigration laws," and obtained work visas for clients "who were charged legal fees as high as $22,000," according to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Attorney Irwin Jay Fredman, 72, of Bethesda, Md., and two legal assistants, Elnur Veliev, 21 of Silver Spring, Md., and Alp Canseven, 20, of Washington, D.C., were also charged in the indictment, which was unsealed last week.

The defendants face up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count of the indictment. Sergei Danilov, identified as a Russian national who is a permanent resident in the United States, could face deportation if convicted of the allegations, according to the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement release.

The indictment also charged Danilov's law firm, Segei Danilov and Associates, and Fredman's law firm, Law Offices of I. Jay Fredman, according to the release.

<sh>Organ Transplant Fund for Great Falls Girl

<bt>Members of the Great Falls community and beyond are banding together help 15-year-old Courtney Payen, who requires a liver transplant to save her life. Courtney is the daughter of Lydie Payen, the owner/operator of Nails By Lydie in Great Falls. Courtney has been diagnosed with biliary atresia, the congenital absence or closure of the ducts that drain bile from the liver. Doctors at Georgetown University Hospital have recommended a life-saving liver transplant, and Courtney currently is on the waiting list for the procedure. Meanwhile, her family, friends and community volunteers are working through the Children’s Organ Transplant Association (COTA) to raise the estimated $50,000 needed to pay for transplant expenses. COTA is a national charity dedicated to assuring that no child is denied a transplant or excluded from a transplant list due to lack of funds. Donations to “COTA for Courntey P.’s Fund” are eligible for a tax deduction, and 100 percent of all funds are used for transplant-related expenses.

Courtney’s supporters are organizing a silent auction fund-raiser from 2-4 p.m. on Saturday May 21, at the Great Falls Public Library, 9830 Georgetown Pike, Great Falls. Donations of items and services to be auctioned will be gratefully accepted until May 15. To contribute an item, contact Joanne Horton at 703-759-3819. Community members who cannot attend the silent auction have several other options for making tax-deductible contributions to help Courtney’s family pay for transplant-related expenses and post-transplant care:

Make in-person donations at any Wachovia branch location using account number 3000025418234.

Mail checks or money orders payable to “COTA for Courtney P.” to Children’s Organ Transplant Association, 2501 COTA Drive, Bloomington, IN 47403.

Send a check or contact the local trustee for COTA for Courtney P’s Fund, Karen Meengs, at 703-757-7960 to insure the funds are properly deposited in this specific campaign.

<sh>Potomac River Sojourn

<bt>Paddlers from across the region will join local communities and elected officials in the fourth annual Potomac River Sojourn — a week-long paddling expedition designed to elevate local awareness about the need to restore and protect the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay.

The trip begins July 8 with kick-off festivities and dinner at the National Conservation Training Center in Shepherdstown, W.Va. and continues downstream to Riverbend Park in Great Falls through July 16. Throughout the week, paddlers will take part in educational programs, riverside camping and meetings with elected officials. The Sojourn is coordinated by the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay and the Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin.

Registration is open until June 11. Paddlers should contact Jamie Alberti at 202-466-5633 or visit www.AllianceChesBay.org. The daily registration fee is $45 for adults and $25 for youth. Registration is limited. Sojourners can take part for a day or two of the trip or spend the entire week on the river.

<sh>Fresh Air Fund Seeks Host Families

<bt>Each summer the Fresh Air Fund gives summer vacations in rural and suburban communities to inner-city children. The Fund is seeking households to host a child from a low-income neighborhood in New York City for two weeks or more. To learn more, call Cynthia Kronlage at 703-426-1616, call the Fresh Air Fund at 800-367-0003 or visit www.freshair.org.

<sh>Governor's Screenwriting Competition

<bt>The Virginia Film Office will be sponsoring the 15th Governor's Screenwriting Competition. Only Virginia residents may submit screenplays. Each script must contain either Virginia locations or locations that could reasonably be expected to be found in Virginia. Scripts must be approximately 100-130 pages long, typed and submitted in a standard screenplay format. Screenplays are first read by Virginia judges, and finalists are selected and submitted to a second panel of judges who are currently working professionally in the entertainment industry. Three winning screenplays are then selected and each writer awarded a prize of $1,000 at the Virginia Film Festival in October.

Submissions will be accepted at the Virginia Film Office, 901 E. Byrd St., Richmond, VA 23219-4048. Screenplays must either be hand-delivered to the office by 5 p.m. on June 10 or postmarked on that day. Notification of results will be made on or around October 14. For more information call 800-854-6233 or visit www.film.virginia.org.

<sh>Cell Phone Drive

<bt>In order to fight domestic violence and combat community crime, the Virginia Crime Prevention Association and the Allstate Foundation, along with the Wireless Foundation and local law enforcement agencies, have launched a statewide public-private partnership drive to collect used cell phones. Known as the Call to Protect program, the new initiative urges Virginia cell phone users to donate old cell phones and batteries in specially marked boxes at participating Allstate agencies. All Call to Protect phones are pre-programmed to dial 911 and usually one or two non-emergency numbers like a domestic violence shelter. Members of the Cellular Telecommunications & Internet Association donate free emergency airtime. All cell phone donations are tax-deductible. To print a tax receipt visit www.wirelessfoundation.com. There is one participating Allstate location in McLean: 6845 Elm St., Suite 103. For more information call 804-231-3800 or e-mail vaprevent@aol.com.

<sh>Nominations Sought for Elly Doyle Service Awards

<bt>Nominations will open on May 20 for the Elly Doyle Park Service Awards. The annual award, sponsored by the Fairfax County Park Authority and established in 1988, recognizes outstanding volunteer service by groups and individuals in support of Fairfax County parks and park programs. Nominations close on July 8. The award honors the past service of Ellamae Doyle, a former member of the Park Authority Board and well-known activist.

Anyone may offer a nomination. Current members of the Board of Supervisors, Park Authority Board and paid park staff are ineligible to receive the award. Recipients will be honored at a reception and volunteer recognition celebration on November 18. For more information or to receive an application form, contact the Public Information Office at 703-324-8662 or visit www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/2005doylenom.htm.

<sh>Riverbend Park Seeks New Volunteers, Leaders

<bt>Adult volunteers are needed to work in several different volunteer positions at Riverbend Park, located along the Potomac River in Great Falls.

Volunteers-on-duty are needed to work at the front desk greeting visitors and orienting them to the park, responding to questions, registering people for programs and answering the phone. Weekday and weekend opportunities are available. Program leaders are needed weekday mornings to help with children’s programs by leading activities, guiding trail walks and assisting with planning.

No experience is necessary, and all training is provided. For more details or to apply, visit www.fairfaxcounty.gov/parks or call Jim Dewing at 703-759-9018.

<sh>McLean Day Run Changes Location

<bt>The Old Firehouse Teen Center’s annual 8K Run will be held on McLean Day, Saturday, May 21. This year, the race will start one hour earlier, at 8 a.m., and will be held at the Lewinsville Senior Center, 1609 Great Falls St. The race is still a part of the McLean Community Center’s McLean Day festival. The course will be the same as it has been in previous years, except it will start and finish at the senior center instead of at Lewinsville Park. Same-day registration will begin at 7 a.m.; the race starts at 8 a.m. Awards will be presented to males and females in the following age groups: 14 and under, 15–19, 20–29, 30–39, 40–49, 50–59 and 60 and over. Participants can pre-register at the Old Firehouse Teen Center until Thursday, May 19. The pre-registration fee is $18; on May 20, the registration fee will be $20. For more information call 703-448-8336 or visit www.mcleancenter.org.

<sh>Memorial Day Service

<bt>On Memorial Day, Monday, May 30 at 1 p.m. on the Great Falls Freedom Plaza grounds, 9830 Georgetown Pike, the Friends of the Great Falls Freedom Memorial will host a service in remembrance for those who have died in the nation's service. Captain Joshua Root, U.S. Marine Corps, a combat veteran of Iraq, will be the keynote speaker to honor those who have given the ultimate sacrifice.

<sh>Policing Intersections

<bt>Officers from the McLean District Station have begun a traffic initiative to keep intersections clear, encouraging drivers not to "block the box." An electronic message board has been posted for several weeks at designated areas to educate the public about their legal obligation to keep intersections clear of vehicles. Officers are targeting their enforcement efforts at intersections with the most prevalent violations of traffic laws, ticketing offenders at the intersections of Leesburg Pike and Idylwood Road, Leesburg Pike and Pimmit Drive, Dolley Madison Boulevard and Old Dominion Drive, and Chain Bridge Road and Old Courthouse Road. Beginning on May 12, enforcement has been conducted primarily during the evening rush hour and continues for two weeks.

<sh>Grants Available for Nonprofits

<bt>Temple Rodef Shalom announces the creation of the TRS Fund for the Community. The fund's primary mission is to promote the concept of Tikkun Olam (activities that promote social action and social justice) by helping to strengthen the capacity of nonprofit organizations throughout the community to address social problems and needs. The fund will make small, competitive grants to 501c3 nonprofit organizations in Northern Virginia to help them build capacity, leadership skills and experience.

All grants will be made in response to written guidelines that can be found at www.templerodefshalom.org/trsfund and will be reviewed competitively by the Fund Advisory Committee. For each grant, the fund will also appoint a liaison from the Temple to work with the grantee organization on a volunteer basis. Awards will be in the range of $1,000-$5,000 over a period of no more than 12 months.

The deadline for receiving proposals in the first round of grantmaking is June 15.

<sh>McLean Day 2005

<bt>The McLean Community Center’s (MCC) McLean Day 2005: Celebrating Our Hometown festival will be held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 21, at Lewinsville Park. The park is located at 1659 Chain Bridge Road. Admission and parking are free. Dranesville tax district residents can cast their votes to elect new members to the McLean Community Center’s Governing Board. Elections are at the park from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

This year marks the 90th year of the community festival. The first festival was held in 1915 at the “Civic League Lot,” a field adjacent to Franklin Sherman School. It was sponsored by the McLean School and Civic League Inc., and the day-long events’ proceeds were used to fund school and community projects. Over the years, various community organizations have kept the event going, with varying levels of success. In the mid-1970s, MCC began to sponsor the event on its grounds. In 1989, due to the increase in participants, the center relocated the festival to its current home, Lewinsville Park.

Due to limited parking options in and around Lewinsville Park on McLean Day, a free shuttle service will be available during festival hours running to the park from Redeemer Lutheran Church, 1545 Chain Bridge Road, and the McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Ave. The festival will be held rain or shine. For more information call MCC at 703-790-0123/TTY: 703-827-8255 or visit www.mcleancenter.org. The Center’s telephone will be answered from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the day of the festival.

<sh>Falls Church Woman Missing

<bt>Police need help to locate a missing woman. Essie Abrams, 69, has been missing since Thursday, May 12, at approximately 5 p.m. She was last seen at her home in the Falls Church area. Police and her family are concerned for her safety because she suffers from dementia.

She is described as a black woman, approximately 5 feet 3 inches tall, weighing about 135 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. She was wearing jeans and a red jacket with a leopard print purse.

Anyone with information on Ms. Abrams' whereabouts is asked to call police at 703-691-2131. Callers may remain anonymous.