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This Week in Potomac 1-17-07

Armed Home Invasion Robbery in Potomac

Detectives are investigating an armed home invasion robbery that occurred in Potomac on Jan. 5.

On Jan. 5, at approximately 11:26 p.m., 1st District officers responded to the 12600 block of Maidens Bower Drive in Potomac for the report of an armed home invasion robbery.

According to police, the victim, a 36-year-old man from Potomac, and his girlfriend, a 36-year-old woman from Potomac, arrived home and parked in their driveway. As the couple got out of their vehicle, a masked suspect approached the male victim and pointed a gun at him. According to police, the suspect struck the male victim as two other masked suspects entered the home. The victims’ five children, ranging from 8 to 18 years old, were inside the home when the suspects entered. Property was taken from the home along with a handgun. None of the victims were injured during the incident. Police described all three suspects are described as black males wearing all-black clothing.

Anyone who has information about this incident and/or the suspects is asked to from the Montgomery County Police Major Crimes Division, Robbery Section, at 240-773-5100. Those who wish to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers of Montgomery County, toll-free, at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477). Crime Solvers will pay a cash reward of up to $1,000 for information provided to them that leads to an arrest and/or indictment of the suspects in this crime.

Human Rights Commission to Discuss Diversity Issues with Public School System

Diversity issues will be the featured topic of discussion between the Montgomery County Human Rights Commission and representatives of Montgomery County Public Schools at the Jan. 22 commission meeting in Rockville. The meeting will be held at the Executive Office Building, 101 Monroe St., in the Lobby Level Conference Room, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Parking is available in the lower level of the Council Office Building garage (enter off of Monroe or Jefferson streets) or in the public lot across from the Regal Cinemas (enter off of Middle Lane). For more information, call 240-777-8450.

Credit Union Abandons Conversion Plans

The Lafayette Federal Credit Union has abandoned plans to convert to a for-profit bank. Opponents to the plan, proposed in November, claimed the move would benefit the board of directors at the expense of regular customers.

Lafayette had announced that members had voted in favor of the conversion, then announced the withdrawal of plans because “the integrity of the balloting process has been irredeemably compromised” due to errors by the company hired to oversee the vote, according to a statement on Lafayette’s Web site, www.lfcu.org.

"We will continue to operate as a Federal credit union and to anticipate no immediate changes in our operations," said Michael Hearne, President and Chief Operating Officer.

The door for change down the road was left open.

"As always, the long-term viability of the organization and the financial needs of our membership are our primary concerns," said Hearne, who had expressed support for the conversion in September.

Leggett Seeks Applicants for Recreation Advisory Boards

Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett is seeking applicants to fill vacancies on the following Recreation Advisory Boards: Countywide (one regular position); East County (one regular position; two alternate positions); Mid-County (five regular vacancies; two alternate positions); Silver Spring (two regular positions; two alternate positions); Upcounty (one alternate position); Western Area (two alternate positions). The countywide and regional recreation boards advise the County Executive, County Council, the director of the Department of Recreation and the Planning Board on regional recreation needs, encourage the development of desirable parks and recreational opportunities, and advise and make recommendations to appropriate officials on matters concerning budgets, recreation programs, services, and facilities.

Membership on the regional boards includes nine regular members and two alternates. Members must reside in one of the five regions of Montgomery County. Residents who live within the city limits of Rockville, Gaithersburg or Washington Grove are not eligible for appointment. Members serve three-year terms without compensation. Meetings are usually held once a month in the evening in the respective geographic areas. To determine the region where you reside or for more specific information on the evening that the regional boards meet, please call 240-777-2528.

Applicants should write letter of interest by Feb. 2 to County Executive Isiah Leggett at the Executive Office Building, l0l Monroe Street, Rockville, MD 20850 or send an e-mail to CountyExecutive.Boards@montgomerycountymd.gov. A brief resume, with work and home phone numbers and e-mail address, should be included. Members of County boards, committees and commissions may not serve on more than one such group at a time.

Leggett's appointments are subject to confirmation by the County Council. Applications of those selected for appointment are made public as part of the confirmation process.

Nan Aron to Speak at NCJW Meeting

National Council of Jewish Women invites all interested people to the first meeting of the new year at the Rockville Jewish Community Center on Tuesday, Jan. 23. The speaker will be Nan Aron, president of the Alliance for Justice, who will present and take questions about the documentary "Quiet Revolution." The group meets at 11:30 a.m., followed by lunch; speaker begins at 1 p.m. Luncheon reservations ($8/dessert and beverage only $2) must be made by calling Gerri Scholar at 301-598-2694 before Jan. 20. For further information call NCJW President Shelley Stahl at 301-598-2967.

Montgomery Democrats to Elect New Member of the Central Committee

On February 13, 2007, the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee, at its regular meeting, will elect a member from Legislative District 16. The new member will replace Paul Mandell who has resigned. District 16 encompasses all or parts of Bethesda, Cabin John, Chevy Chase, North Bethesda, Potomac and Rockville.

All residing in District 16, who would like to fill the position should submit a letter of application with a resume by 5:00PM, Monday, February 12, 2007, to the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee by mail to 3720 Farragut Avenue, Kensington, MD 20895, FAX to 301-946-1002 or email to MontgomeryDems@msn.com. Applicants are requested to attend the February 13, 2007, meeting at 7:30PM and will be interviewed by the Committee members on their capability to fill this position.

For further information, contact Elliot Chabot, Committee Secretary at 301-871-1113.

Georgetown Prep Names New Head …

Georgetown Preparatory School President Rev. William L. George, S.J., has appointed Jeffrey Lynn Jones, Georgetown Prep’s Assistant Headmaster and Dean of Students, as Headmaster. The Board of Trustees unanimously approved the appointment, which was announced to faculty, families and alumni on Friday, Jan. 5.

Jones replaces Edward M. Kowalchick, who served as headmaster since July 2004.

Jones has served as an administrator in various capacities at Georgetown Prep for the past 10 years. In his role as Dean of Students, he has chaired both the Student Assistance Committee and the Discipline Committee.

After graduating from Chaminade University of Honolulu, Jones’s first job was as a history teacher at Maryknoll High School in Honolulu, a Catholic, coeducational school of 600 students. From teaching, he moved into the administration at Maryknoll, first as Dean of Students and eventually Vice Principal. During his seven years at Maryknoll, he completed graduate coursework in Education Administration at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He then took a break from the academic world to help manage a corporate law firm in Honolulu. When he moved to the East Coast, he continued similar work as Director of Marketing, Information Services, and Financial Reporting at the legal research arm of the Commerce Clearing House.

Jones lives in Bethesda with his wife, Jenny. His son, Jeffrey, is a sophomore at The College of William and Mary.

… As Does Holton-Arms School

The Holton-Arms School Board of Trustees announced on Tuesday its unanimous selection of Susanna A. Jones to serve as the seventh Head of School. She will take the pose effective July 1, 2007.

Jones is the current Head of The Ethel Walker School, a college preparatory girls' day and boarding school for grades 6 through 12, in Simsbury, Connecticut. During her eight-year tenure, she built a $10 million endowment and advanced the country's premier secondary school equestrian program.

A graduate of Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, and Princeton University, with Honors, Jones began her career at The Spence School in New York City as an Upper School History teacher. While there, she earned two Master's degrees in history from Columbia University. She then moved on to Peggy Powell Dean & Company, an organizational and financial development consulting firm in New York, where she co-authored The Complete Guide to Capital Campaigns for Historic Churches and Synagogues.

She spent several years in development at Union Theological Seminary, and St. Hilda's and St. Hugh's School, both in New York, before shifting her focus to girls' school administration. She served for six years as the Director of Upper School at Marlborough School in Los Angeles, California. In 1999, she returned east to assume her current role as Head of The Ethel Walker School.

Jones will replace Holton's current Head of School, Diana Coulton Beebe, who has served in this capacity for 15 years. Ms. Beebe will be retiring at the close of the 2006-2007 school year.

Navy Extends Scoping Period for Public Comments on BRAC-Related Expansion

U.S. Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Maryland Delegate William A. Bronrott (D-16) and Montgomery County Councilman Roger Berliner (D-1) announced on Jan. 10 the Department of the Navy's decision to extend the public comment period for the proposed expansion of the National Naval Medical Center (NNMC) for 30 days, until Feb. 3.

The public comment period, which is required by the National Environmental Policy Act, will give the public an additional opportunity to share its concerns over the proposed relocation of the Walter Reed Army Medical Center (WRAMC) services onto the NNMC campus.

At the request of the elected officials who represent the neighborhoods surrounding NNMC, the Navy also agreed to use the additional time to host well-publicized public forums to give interested individuals and neighborhood associations greater opportunities to learn about the full scope of this BRAC project and to express their views during this scoping period. Those who would like to provide public comment can do so via e-mail at nnmceis@bethesda.med.navy.mil or by phone at 301-295-2722.

National Naval Medical Center will also hold two additional public information meetings. The meetings are scheduled for Jan. 30 and Feb. 1 from 7-9 p.m. at the Pooks Hill Marriott in Bethesda.

The public will have another opportunity to formally comment in the summer of 2007 once the draft Environmental Impact Statement is published.

Critical Blood Shortage

The National Institute of Health Blood Bank has announced an urgent need for type O blood donors. Both local and regional inventories of this blood type are dangerously low. If you are a donor with blood type O, please donate today by visiting the NIH Blood Bank located on the first floor of the Clinical Center on the NIH campus in Bethesda. Hours of operation are from 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. Please call for an appointment or directions at 301-496-1048. Convenient, free parking is available for blood donors.

If you have not donated blood before and are not sure if you are eligible, please visit www.cc.nih.gov/dtm/html/donrinfo.htm to learn more about being a donor at NIH.

Public Libraries Add New Music Online Collection

Thanks to a new online service offered by Montgomery County Public Libraries (MCPL), customers with MCPL cards can now access a variety of music — including African American, classical and folk — from their own homes.

Entitled Music Online, the database is part of the Montgomery Online Resources (MOR) collection and may be accessed from the MCPL home page, www.montgomerycountymd.gov/library. Music Online requires Macromedia Flash Player version 7 and higher or Microsoft Windows Media Player version 10 and higher.

County’s Class of ’06 Sets Records in AP Participation

The Class of 2006 at Montgomery County’s public schools broke Advanced Placement (AP) participation and performance records established by the Class of 2005 and capped a five-year trend of consistently higher performance for graduates from all student groups, according to a press release from county schools last month. According to the press release, 56 percent (5,282 students) took at least one AP exam and 45 percent (4,234 students) earned at least one AP score of 3 or higher.

The historic high levels of achievement for the Class of 2006 stretch across all student demographic groups, the press release said. The complete Advanced Placement Exam Participation and Performance Report for the MCPS Classes of 2002 to 2006 is on the MCPS web site at www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org.