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Votes

RCA Announces Board Candidates

Online elections June 26 to July 10.

The Reston Citizens Association (RCA) released the slate of candidates for its 2013 Board of Directors election. Founded in 1967, the Reston Citizens Association (RCA) represents the citizens of Reston on political and social issues, including planning, development, transportation, education, environment, accessibility and more. RCA is committed to preserving Bob Simon's founding principles and New Town vision as Reston moves forward as an established community.

The following seats are up for election: president, North Point director, Lake Anne/Tall Oaks/Town Center director, South Lakes director, Hunters Woods director, and two At-Large directors. Each seat carries a two-year term, except for president, which has a one-year term.

Running for president are incumbent Colin Mills and board member Gary Lee Thomas.

Mills, 34, is a lifelong Restonian who is completing his second year as RCA president. He had previously served on the RCA Board from 2005 to 2010, and as vice chair of the Reston Community Center (RCC) Board of Governors. He is Bob Simon’s alternate on the Reston Master Plan Task Force. Mills hopes to have RCA facilitate a community-wide discussion on Reston’s future. He also hopes to strengthen RCA’s ties to other community organizations, and improve RCA’s two-way communication with Reston citizens.

Thomas is currently serving as an At-Large RCA Board member; he has been in office for one year and serves on RCA’s Education Committee. He also served two previous terms on the RCA Board. He is the president-elect of the Sunrise Valley Elementary PTA, and is a former chapter president of the Reston Jaycees. If elected, Thomas would focus on fundraising and community events. He hopes to start events such as a Reston Mini-Maker Faire, RCA Reston Spelling Bee, and RCA Reston Dirt Bike Race.

Gary Walker is seeking re-election as Lake Anne/Tall Oaks/Town Center director. Walker has lived in Reston for over 20 years, and he has served on the RCA Board since 2011. He is the chair of RCA’s Technology Committee, and spearheaded the recent re-launch of RCA’s website and newsletter. He hopes to help RCA craft action steps to meet its strategic goals, and to ensure that RCA speaks for the community. He calls for the citizens of Reston to have a voice in the community’s future.

Joe Leighton is standing for election as South Lakes director. Leighton, a 32-year Reston resident, is currently secretary of the Reston Association (RA) Board, and he served as an RA Board member for 12 years. He also serves as the treasurer of the Association of Reston Clusters and Homeowners (ARCH), and is a former president of the Wethersfield Cluster Association. He seeks to preserve neighborhoods in South Reston, maintain open space, strengthen public transportation, and improve the lighting and sidewalks in Reston.

Two candidates are seeking election to the two open Hunters Woods Director seats.

John Hanley, RCA’s sitting vice president, is seeking re-election. Hanley has served on the RCA Board since 2009, and he is a former co-chair of the Reston 20/20 Committee and former chair of the Elections Committee. He intends to expand the work of RCA and Reston 20/20 to improve Reston’s quality of life and plan for new development in the community. He calls for protection of Reston’s classic values and for the community to grow in an ordered fashion.

Connie Hartke, a first-time RCA candidate, is seeking the other Hunters Woods seat. Hartke is a board member of Rescue Reston and a volunteer with the Reston Triathlon, Reston Marathon, and Herndon-Reston FISH. She has also been an activist for palliative and hospice care. She hopes to help Restonians understand the important issues facing the community, using RCA as a platform to distribute information in an easy-to-understand format.

Tammi Petrine is running for re-election to an At-Large director seat. Petrine has lived in Reston for 37 years, and she has served on the RCA Board since 2007. She is the co-chair of the Reston 20/20 Committee and also serves as vice president of the Fairway Cluster Association. She was a founder of the Reston Institute for the Arts and founder of the Soapstone/Myrtle Neighborhood Watch. Petrine hopes to continue RCA’s advocacy on behalf of Reston’s citizens. She believes RCA can promote Reston's best interests as the community copes with massive development along the Dulles corridor.

The RCA Board election will take place from June 26 to July 10. Continuing the practice established last year, this year’s election will be held entirely online. Anyone who (a) is 18 years or older and (b) lives anywhere in Reston (defined as Reston Small Tax District #5) is eligible to vote. Voters can go to www.restoncitizensassocation.org and click on the “VOTE” button to learn more about the candidates and cast their ballots.