The Fairfax County Federation of Citizens' Associations
requests the pleasure of your company at the
Sixty-Sixth Annual Awards Banquet
2015 Fairfax County Citizen of the Year
Citation of Merit Honorees
Special Gratitude Award Honoree
Sunday, the third of April, 2016
Crowne Plaza Tysons Corner
1960 Chain Bridge Road, McLean, Virginia
Cocktails 5:30 p.m.
Program 6:30 p.m.
Olga Hernandez has been involved with the League of Women Voters in Virginia for over 20 years. Olga became a board member of the LWV of the Fairfax Area in 1996 (Fairfax is the largest league in the state) and served as its president from 2000 to 2005. From 2005 to 2007, she served as the Vice President and director of the League of Women Voters of Virginia., and in 2007, she was elected president of the League of Women Voters of Virginia. In addition to the presidency, she moderated the Women's Roundtable meetings during the General Assembly sessions.
She served as LWV of Virginia President for four years, and is currently on the state board. She has organized statewide televised Gubernatorial and US Senate debates.
She served on the Help America Vote Act committee for Virginia, the Virginia State Board of Elections Residency Task Force and state Census Complete Count Committee. She is an officer of the Virginia Coalition for Open Government and the LWV of the National Capital Areas. She served on the Fairfax County Bi-Partisan Election Improvement Commission and has also served on various community committees.
Born in Cuba, but raised in Miami, Florida, Olga Hernandez became a naturalized citizen at 18. She graduated from the University of Florida with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.
Her professional experience includes work in radio, public and commercial television news production, and print media in various locations throughout the U.S.
She has done extensive work with Girl Scouts USA, various PTA organizations, military community groups and other non-profit and volunteer efforts. As a military family, her family resided in various states. In 1995 they moved and settled in Virginia.
For her many and diverse volunteer efforts, including making Fairfax and Virginia residents informed voters, the Fairfax Federation is honored to recognize Olga Hernandez as 2015 Citizen of the Year.
Mr. Douglas Sanderson has tirelessly devoted 25 years of pro-bono legal service to the citizens of Fairfax County as legal counsel to the Arts Council of Fairfax County, Inc. The Arts Council is the non-profit organization that is Fairfax County's designated local arts agency. Doug's professional expertise has had and continues to have a direct and positive impact on the quality of life in Fairfax County.
Doug has provided outstanding legal expertise to the Arts Council on a consistent, steady and ongoing basis, in the arena of lease agreements, artist contracts, and even fending off disgruntled or misguided complainers. He has attended nearly all board meetings, though not a voting member of the board, so that he can keep abreast of the Arts Council's services and engagements. He has become in part a "living history" of the Arts Council, having served under its last three Presidents, from Toni McMahon, through Ann Rodriguez, to Linda Sullivan. He has personally negotiated the legal provisions in the Council's last three leases, as the Council moved from Annandale to the Courthouse area, to Merrifield.
Doug has lent his personal commitment and legal sensitivities to auxiliary roles for the Council that directly benefit the County, such as serving on the Master Arts Plan Task Force to produce a master arts plan for the County, and providing legal guidance to support the Council's public art project, Imagine Arts Here: Tysons Tiles. For over two decades Doug assisted the Arts Council in bringing children from around the world to perform at the International Children's Festival, a youth festival dedicated to the performing, visual, and interactive arts.
Doug's passion for the arts stems from growing up with art historian parents, and he recalls, growing up, having visited perhaps more churches with his Dad, who was doing research in and about them, than most people visit in their lives. But his involvement with the community goes beyond advocating for the arts. In addition, Doug has served many years as a member of the boards of directors of Legal Services of Northern Virginia (serving as President from 1993 through 1996), Temple Rodef Shalom, the Central Fairfax Chamber of Commerce, and the Communities of Faith United for Housing. He served on the Site Selection Committee for Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia. Doug's well-regarded legal practice includes commercial real estate transactions and family law as a principal in the 100+ year old firm of McCandlish Lillard in Fairfax.
For his many and diverse volunteer efforts benefiting Fairfax and Virginia residents in the world of arts and entertainment, the Fairfax Federation is honored to recognize Doug Sanderson with a Citation of Merit.
James R. Hart is an attorney with Hart & Horan, PC in Fairfax. He is an author and frequent lecturer on construction law, and a former Chair of the Construction Law and Public Contracts Section of the Virginia State Bar. He has served for the past 31 years on the Fairfax Public Law Library committee.
Jim has been an at-large member of the Fairfax County Board of Zoning Appeals since 2000. He has served as an at-large member of the Fairfax County Planning Commission since 2004, including 2 terms as Parliamentarian, and its current Secretary, handling countywide zoning ordinance amendments. He has chaired its Environment Committee since 2007, developing the County's green building policy. He also has served on the commission's Policy and Procedures, Land Use Process, Parks, Transportation, Telecommunications and Tysons committees. A former president and land use chair of the West Fairfax County Citizens Association [WFCCA], he also represented the Virginia Run community on Sully District Council, and served on many land use and transportation task forces.
He is a former member of the Fairfax County Board of Equalization of Real Estate Assessments, and a former chair of the Countywide Non-motorized Transportation [Trails] Committee. A past recipient of the Fairfax Bar Association's President's Award, he was recognized as an at-large Lord Fairfax in 2000, and received the James D. McDonnell Award for Outstanding Achievement in Community Service from the WFCCA in 2002. A graduate of the both the School of Architecture and School of Law of the University of Virginia, Jim resides in the Virginia Run community in Centreville.
For his many and diverse volunteer efforts benefiting Fairfax and Virginia residents in the areas of zoning and planning, the Fairfax Federation is honored to recognize Jim Hart with a Citation of Merit
Phil Rosenthal graduated from WVU in 1964 with a business management degree. He has been the President of Nationwide Credit Corporation, a third party debt collection agency, since 1970. Under Phil’s guidance, the company continues to grow and prosper.
The collection industry’s trade association, American Collectors Association International (ACA) elected Phil as an officer in 1996 and Phil became its president in 2000. Phil was awarded a number of ACA honors for his diligent work, knowledge and service to the collection industry.
Phil has also been a member of the Virginia Collection Agency (VCA) since 1972 and served in all positions within the association.
While Phil grew his company and became active within the collection industry, he did not limit all his attention to business. Phil also serves on the Fairfax County Community Action Advisory Board, Fairfax County A. Heath Onthank Memorial Awards Selection Committee and Good Shepherd Housing. He is deeply committed to help our area’s low-income families in their struggles of finding adequate housing, food and caring for their children. The Fairfax County of Fire and Rescue Department has a volunteer division, Firefighters and Friends to the Rescue, which helps underprivileged children. For a number of years Phil has participated in their various drives: school backpack, coats, shoes, haircuts and holiday toys. Recently Phil was awarded the Governor’s 2013 Virginia’s Fire Service Award for Excellence in Virginia’s Fire Service Support – Private Sector.
For his many and diverse volunteer efforts benefiting underprovided Fairfax and Virginia residents, Fairfax Federation is honored to recognize Phil Rosenthal with a Citation of Merit.
Shirley Ginwright is the president of the Fairfax County NAACP and has long been active in Public Safety initiatives and programs. Ms. Ginwright served on the Fairfax County Chief of Police's Diversity Council in 2013 and has worked hard to increase diversity within the Police Department.
After the riots in Ferguson, MO, Ms.Ginwright grew concerned about the safety of Fairfax County citizens and law enforcement officials. She saw a need to increase cooperation and communication between residents and public safety agencies. In early 2015, she met with law enforcement leaders and elected officials to discuss what precautions were in place and what needed to be done to prevent violence from occurring in Fairfax County. Ms. Ginwright recommended the creation of a Committee to improve law enforcement and community relationships and communication. Shortly after this meeting, the Communities of Trust Committee (COTC) was established, bringing together law enforcement agencies and citizens to discuss community outreach and cooperation.
Ms. Ginwright became Chairman of COTC and immediately signed up to attend the Police Department Civilian Academy to get a better understanding of the operations of the police department. She then reached out to a diverse group of community leaders, citizens, religious leaders, and law enforcement officials to serve with her on the Committee.
In 2015, the COTC held multiple meetings and organized a number of outreach events, including "Public Safety Day" and several moderated, community forums. These events allowed citizens and public safety officials to communicate with each other and learn about the challenges facing each group. Ms. Ginwright has also been instrumental increasing COTC membership to include not only Fairfax County public safety agencies, but also the Arlington County Police Department, the Virginia State Police, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Justice Department Outreach Division. In addition to her work with COTC, Ms. Ginwright served on the Ad Hoc Police Practices Review Commission organized by Chairman Bulova in 2015 to review police practices. Ms. Ginwright served as the Chair of the Subcommittee to Review Police Practices for Recruitment, Diversity, and Vetting. The Commission submitted its recommendations near the end of 2015.
Ms. Ginwright's plans for this year include working to establish a 501(c)(3) Public Safety Outreach Foundation to implement programs to keep children safe and make them responsible and successful citizens.
Sally Sibley retired after 42 years as President & CEO of PHILLIPS Programs for Children and Families, a nonprofit serving youth with disabilities. During Sibley's time at PHILLIPS, the organization grew from serving four students in a small schoolhouse to serving over 500 children and families in five programs across the entire Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.
Sibley began her career at PHILLIPS in September 1969 as the first Director of the Early Childhood Unit, after working at the George Washington University Counseling Center. As PHILLIPS began to grow there became the need for overall leadership and Sibley assumed the role of CEO. Sibley's desire to work directly with children brought her to PHILLIPS and this commitment is the reason she continued her work for 42 years. "Sally has given her leadership, time and effort to build and sustain our strong and highly regarded organization on behalf of the children," explains Kevin Boyce, Chairman of the PHILLIPS Board of Trustees.
A constant champion for children, Sibley was instrumental in the establishment of a community network of associations who work together in advocating for the rights of children and their families. This work included the creation of the Virginia Association of Independent Special Education Facilities, Northern Virginia Coalition (NOVACO), and the National Association of Private Special Education Centers (NAPSEC), of which she was the first woman president. "Coordinated voices are more impactful than single voices," says Sibley describing the importance of advocacy. Sibley was also invited to represent NAPSEC on the taskforce in the 1970's that wrote the original I.D.E.A. (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) legislation and associated regulations, which governs how state and public agencies provide special education for children with disabilities. Sibley maintains that given the current economic climate it is critical to keep the needs of these children and families in the forefront and continue to focus on providing the best educational opportunities.
Sibley credits the success of PHILLIPS' mission to the strong values that guides the organization. "We built a foundation with these values which helps us always keep the best interest of the child and family in mind," says Sibley when discussing the strong dedication to values. Sibley hopes the focus on values will continue to be the guiding principle of the PHILLIPS as it continues to grow enhance services. The strength of values created the legacy of the past and built a solid foundation for the future.
The Fairfax County Federation of Citizens Associations, established in 1940, is the countywide voice for homeowner, civic, and community associations. An all-volunteer organization, The Federation works on issues that impact Fairfax County residents, including education, transportation, the environment, human services, land use, the county budget, and state and federal legislative issues.
PRESS CONTACT: Jeff Parnes, COY Chair, FedCOY2016 @ fairfaxfederation.org Phone: 703-424-2956
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Fairfax County Federation of Citizens Associations, P.O. Box 3913, Merrifield, VA 22116-3913,