In April, the Columbia villages held their annual elections to elect representatives to their respective village community association boards, as well as to the Columbia Association (CA) Board of Directors.
This year there were four villages with contested CA Board races: Oakland Mills, River Hill, Wilde Lake and Long Reach. Incumbents Alex Hekimian (Oakland Mills) and Michael Cornell (River Hill) were reelected, while incumbent Regina Clay (Wilde Lake) was defeated by newcomer Nancy McCord and Ed Coleman (Long Reach) was defeated by former CA board member Russell Swatek.
In the non-contested elections, Kings Contrivance Village Board member Brian Dunn will replace Shari Zaret on the CA Board (Zaret will now serve on the Kings Contrivance Village Board), and current members Tom Coale (Dorsey’s Search), Gregg Schwind (Hickory Ridge), Suzanne Waller (Town Center) and Andrew Stack (Owen Brown) will begin new terms. Cynthia Coyle will also continue the second half of her two-year term (2013-2014) as the Harper’s Choice representative; there was no race for her seat this year.
For those of you wondering what this means, here’s some background information on the Columbia elections. Each of the 10 villages in Columbia has a village community association board that regulates the village’s covenants, organizes activities for residents and determines the architectural guidelines for the village neighborhoods. In addition, each village also elects one Columbia Council representative to serve as a member of the CA Board of Directors.
Columbia Council, a.k.a.CA Board of Directors
The Columbia Council serves as the CA Board of Directors. The CA Board reviews policies and budget matters, develops strategic initiatives for the association, addresses community issues and appoints the CA president. Since the CA Board is the governing body of CA, it’s essential that residents have a say in who sits on the board.
The village community associations around Columbia each play an important role in the community. The village boards direct the business affairs of the village community association.
This year, there were two contested village board elections, in Town Center and Hickory Ridge. Joel Broida, Lynn Foehrkolb and Lee Richardson will serve on the Town Center Board. Hickory Ridge did not reach its quorum for the April 20 election, and so a second election is being held on Saturday, May 11, from 9am-noon at The Hawthorn Center. Hickory Ridge residents can also vote by absentee ballot; ballots are available at The Hawthorn Center.