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A Glimpse at the Life of the KCA Board of Trustees

Board meetings like this one August 23 are often sparsely attended, unless we have a hot-button issue on the agenda.

There have been several recent Kentlands Town Crier articles concerning the upcoming KCA elections.  We have announced the election schedule and the KCA President in his column this month does a good job describing the roles of the KCA Board members.  This November three seats on the Board of Trustees will be up for election.  At this time two current Board members plan not be seek re-election, requiring at least two new members of the KCA Board.

Board turnover occurs regularly. Since I was elected to the Board during the last contested election in 2013, I have served on the Board with ten different Board members. During the past four years, those Board members have overseen:

  • a retaining wall collapse (including taking bank loans to pay for the wall remediation),
  • the rise of pickleball,
  • approval of vinyl windows for condominium use,
  • our use of organic lawn treatments,
  • rewriting a number of our community resolutions,
  • the start of re-development of the Kentlands Downtown,
  • design of a new website and discussions of the future of the Town Crier,
  • purchase of our own movie equipment (and the start of our great movies by the pool),
  • creation of the Capital Projects Working Committee and the Kentlands Downtown Working Group,
  • modified use of the pool lap lanes,
  • snowmageddon,
  • the first Kentlands Campout,
  • community inspections,
  • a new agreement with the Colonnade,
  • City of Gaithersburg candidate forums,
  • a new Clubhouse phone system and a new copier, etc.!

It has been a pleasure working alongside and getting to know a group of people committed to the care of our wonderful community.

In addition to other Board members, I have been blessed to partner with the many wonderful people who compose our many committees, including those on the Board of Code Compliance (BoCC), the Kentlands Historical Trust (KHT), the Budget and Finance Advisory Committee (BFAC), the Activities Committee, the Environmental Management Committee (EMC) and the Kentlands Community Foundation (KCF).  I have worked with two general managers from our management company, Community Management Corporation (CMC), three CMC assistant managers and the one steady office manager.

If you’re considering a run for the Board, are all these issues to deal with and personalities to navigate starting to elicit feelings of panic?  I hope not!  Remember, these issues arose over the past four years, not in the last four months. And all these people have pitched in together to help get things done. I’ve simply attempted to paint a picture of the diversity of subjects and people one encounters during one or more terms on the Board. It can be a rewarding experience, particularly when you look back on significant accomplishments over the years.

Over the past four years, I have heard many comments similar to “I’m so glad you are on the board, I would never have the time for it.” I’m here to say that it can be done!  Most board members spend about 5-15 hours per month working on KCA issues (prepping for meetings, responding to emails, writing Town Crier articles, etc) and then spend another 2-6 hours per month attending KCA committee meetings (as liaisons to the KCF, BOCC, KHT, BFAC) or other meetings with developers, city officials, lawyers, etc.  Lastly, KCA Board members attend 11 board meetings and 1 annual meeting each year.  In 2014, the Board moved the start of most community meetings (Board meetings, Annual Meeting, Town Halls) to 7:30 to help accommodate those with young children and those coming from work to make the meetings.

Being on the Board and having school-aged children or other interests outside the Board are not mutually exclusive. Do you know that…

  • Four of the five Board members have school-aged children at home?
  • One Board member is very active with the Kentlands Kingfish?
  • One Board member travels the country as his daughter participates with USA climbing and is a USAC Regional Coordinator for the Capital Region (Region 701)?
  • All Board members work jobs outside of the KCA? (not required!)
  • Board members have called into meetings when on the road or when medical concerns have precluded them from attending in person
  • Board members sometimes need to miss meetings due to other conflicts

As an example, I have children aged two, five and nine who have had their own interests to which I have chauffeured them during my time on the Board (soccer, baseball, swimming, ballet, etc.).  I coach the Quince Orchard Girls’ Basketball Team which means preseason conditioning all fall and then practices and games all winter until March.  I also run the Montgomery County Women’s Basketball Coaches Association overseeing a 16-team scrimmage jamboree in November and the Metro Stars fall and summer leagues.  I also serve on a board with my condo association and on a board of coaches across the country.

We are all busy.  My hope is that being busy will not keep you from serving your community.  Now’s the time to consider giving back to our great community and running for a seat on the Board or serve on one of our committees. And if you already do serve – THANK YOU!

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