It’s election season again! No, I’m not talking about the seemingly endless parade of Congressional and gubernatorial primaries. I’m talking about the RCA elections.
The RCA elections open on Saturday, and I’m once again encouraging
you all to take a few minutes to cast your vote. You can help determine
who will be standing up for Reston’s citizens on issues from the future
of our libraries to the revisions to our Master Plan to ensuring that
the Silver Line is built in a way that doesn’t overburden Toll Road users.
This is a particularly important year to cast your vote. As I’ve noted before, I’m stepping down as president, and longtime Board members Terry Maynard and Dick Rogers
are retiring to focus on planning and transportation issues. RCA will
have a new president and a number of new Board members (including the three new Board members
we added in February). There’s new blood and the possibility of a new
direction for RCA; casting your vote will give you a voice in shaping
that new direction.
For the third year in a row, we’re holding our voting online to make
it as easy as possible to cast your vote. You can vote from the comfort
of your home or office, or at the Starbucks, whenever it’s convenient
for you: on your lunch hour, in the morning before work, or in the
middle of the night.
We’ve made an additional change this year to make it easier for you
to vote. For as long as I’ve been on the Board, the RCA has held its
elections in July. This is because we used to hold the vote at the
Reston Festival. Now that the Festival is defunct and we’ve gone to
online voting, we realize that July is a tough time for people to vote: a
lot of folks are on vacation, and those that aren’t might not be paying
close attention to community issues in the dead of summer. By moving
the elections back to June, before school lets out and before vacations
start, we’re hoping to see a jump in turnout.
As always, the voting process is simplicity itself: Just go to the RCA website,
and there will be a link on the left side of the page labeled “Click
here to VOTE”, When you click it, you’ll be taken to a page containing
information about how to vote, as well as short bios of all the
candidates. On that page, you’ll be able to click a link that takes you
to the ballot. Verify your residency, vote for your preferred
candidates, click “Done” and your vote is recorded!
As always, the elections are a team effort, and as always, I’m
grateful to the Board members who have rolled up their sleeves and made
Our tech master, Gary Walker, is once again handling the
nuts-and-bolts work needed to make the election happen. He designed and
tested the ballot, transferred all of the candidate information into
web pages, and is in the process of getting the election information up
on our website. Gary’s in a very busy time personally and
professionally, but he’s coming through when we need him to put the IT
side of the election together.
Our Election Committee (Gary, Tammi Petrine, John Hanley, Annmarie
Swope, Joe Leighton, and George Kain) also deserve a lot of credit. They
collected election information, recruited candidates, produced and
distributed our call for candidates, and publicized the election. It’s a
thankless job, but our Election Committee is once again proving up to
Now, back to the call to action. By casting your vote, you’re
expressing your support for RCA and its efforts. If you benefit from our
work in some way, voting is a great way to encourage us to keep up the
If you want our Reston 20/20 Committee to
keep fighting to ensure a balanced and sustainable future for Reston,
please cast your vote. If you appreciate the work our Reston Accessibility Committee does
to make Reston a friendlier and more accessible place for people with
disabilities, please cast your vote. If you believe that it’s important
to have an independent citizen voice keeping Restonians informed and
speaking up on key issues, please cast your vote.
In the next year, our community will once again consider a number of
important issues that will shape our future course. The County is now
looking at Phase 2 of our Master Plan
revision, and we need to ensure that the changes allow for reimagining
our village centers will protecting our existing neighborhoods and open
space. The Silver Line will open soon
(we think!), and we’ll soon be seeing the first wave of redevelopment
proposals. We need to make sure that we balance the growth with
protection of our roads, our environment, and our quality of life.
The future of Baron Cameron Park
will be decided soon; will it include a new RCC rec center, a relocated
dog park, more field capacity? RCA will be keeping Reston’s citizens
informed and engaged on all those issues, as well as others that we
can’t foresee yet.
Our new Board will have a powerful combination of dedicated returning
members and new blood with fresh ideas to move RCA forward. RCA will
continue working together with other community organizations, taking on
new challenges, and looking for ways to better serve the citizens of
To my mind, that kind of community leadership is priceless. But
right now, all it costs is a few minutes of your time to vote. Make sure
to act fast: the polls open Saturday and close on June 22nd. Please go
to our website, learn about the candidates, and cast your ballot. And
thanks for your support!
Colin Mills is president of the Reston Citizens Association.