Charles Co. Gov. News Briefs - Southern Maryland Headline News

Charles Co. Gov. News Briefs

Senior citizen attendees at the Charles County Senior Prom on March 11.
Senior citizen attendees at the Charles County Senior Prom on March 11.

Senior Prom Celebrates 25th Anniversary

On Friday, March 11, Charles County senior citizens and teens from area high schools enjoyed dinner and then danced the night away to big band music at the 25th anniversary of the Charles County Senior Prom. The highlight of the evening was the crowning of the prom king and queen, M., Buck Proctor and Ms. Denise Legree. The event was hosted by the Greater Waldorf Jaycees.

Davis Named One of Top 100 Maryland Women for Third Time

Inducted into the "Circle of Excellence"

Charles County Commissioner Vice President Debra M. Davis, Esq. (District 2) has been named one of the Top 100 Women in the state of Maryland by The Daily Record for the third time. The Daily Record's Top 100 Women spotlights Maryland women who make a difference through leadership, community service, and mentoring.

"I am proud to stand with women leaders driving positive change in their communities and throughout the state," said Davis.

She is recognized as one of fifteen women in the state for the 2016 Top 100 Women's special honor, the Circle of Excellence, for sustained commitment to professional achievement and leadership.

Davis is a local practicing attorney, and currently serving her second term on the Charles County Board of Commissioners. She serves on several statewide, regional, and local boards. She is currently the chair of the Tri-County Council for Southern Maryland and the Local Government Insurance Trust. She is past-president of the Prince George's County Bar Association, an organization of more than 1,200 lawyers and judges who live and/or practice law in Prince George's County. She is past president and a member of the J. Franklyn Bourne Bar Association, and a member of the American Bar Association, Maryland State Bar Association, Prince George's County Bar Association, Salome A. Howard Bar Association, and Zonta International of Charles County.

"I am glad Commissioner Davis' leadership and service to our community has not gone unnoticed, and I congratulate her on this prestigious recognition," said Commissioner President Peter F. Murphy.

Davis spearheaded several initiatives including: the Charles County intern program; the county's civility code; the Western Charles County Business Roundtable; and the Charles County 2020 Vision program, a comprehensive, long-term plan to address poverty in rural areas.

Davis will be honored at an awards reception on Monday, April 18 at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall in Baltimore.

County Administrator Announces Organizational Changes

County Administrator Michael D. Mallinoff today announced organizational changes to improve overall county government operations and services to residents. In the coming weeks, a new county department—the Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism—will be created. Several changes will also occur in the Departments of Public Works, Planning and Growth Management, and Community Services.

"This reorganization brings similar county government functions together by realigning existing divisions and creating a new department. The changes will greatly improve efficiency and interaction, and bring Charles County Government's structure in line with other jurisdictions of similar size and service scope," said Mallinoff. "After touring the county and meeting with the Commissioners, department directors, and staff, and reviewing other county government structures, it was determined that reorganization would be the best way to structure our staff and skills to meet the short- and long-range goals the Commissioners have established for our community. These changes set the foundation for a more effective and efficient county government now and in years to come."

New Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism

The Recreation Division, Parks and Grounds Division, and the Tourism Office will move from their current departments to form a newly created county department—the Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism. Eileen Minnick, currently director of the Department of Community Services, will serve as director of the new department. Sam Drury will continue to head the Recreation Division. Recruiting for a chief of Tourism and chief of Parks and Grounds is currently underway. A new director will be hired to oversee the Department of Community Services, consisting of: Aging and Senior Programs Division, Housing Division, Vision 2020 Program, Local Management Board, and the Child Care Center.

"Charles County has been unique in having Recreation, Parks, and Tourism located within separate departments. The development of the new Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Department will bring together, under one roof, three dynamic divisions. This perfect pairing will formulate great synergies and teamwork. I am extremely honored to lead this new team of exceptional staff forward as we continue to provide increased opportunities for residents and visitors to our county," said Minnick.

Capital Services Moving to Public Works

The Capital Services Division will move from the Department of Planning and Growth Management to the Department of Public Works. Capital Services will be one of three major areas within Public Works, along with Utilities and Public Facilities. John Stevens will remain chief of Capital Services.

"This change will allow more sharing of resources to efficiently meet the growing needs of the county and improve staff's ability to work together as a team in resolving common project issues," said Public Works Director Bill Shreve.

Transportation Moving to Planning and Growth Management

The Transportation and Community Programs Division within the Department of Community Services will be restructured. Transportation, which provides general public transit through VanGO, will move from Community Services to the Department of Planning and Growth Management. This change will allow for better coordination of public transit services alongside long-range transportation projects. Jeffry Barnett will remain chief of Transportation.

"Sound transportation planning benefits from integration of the planning function with the delivery of transportation services. This change will help Charles County better coordinate these roles and deliver services," said Peter Aluotto, director of Planning and Growth Management.

"I am excited about the operational and structural changes we are implementing to better serve Charles County residents. Realigning similar functions into a new structure will enhance collaboration within county government and makes good business sense," said Commissioner President Peter Murphy.

The Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism, and the Department of Community Services will both be located at the county building at 8190 Port Tobacco Road in Port Tobacco. The Transportation Division will move to the County Government Building at 200 Baltimore Street in La Plata. The Capital Services Division will move to the Audie Lane complex located in La Plata off Radio Station Road.

Annual Caregivers' Conference Scheduled for April 22

The 24th Annual Southern Maryland Caregivers' Conference is being held Friday, April 22, 8 a.m. to 2:45 p.m., at the Richard R. Clark Senior Center (1210 Charles St, La Plata). This one-day event is designed for the family caregiver to gain knowledge and skills in caring for older people.

The $30 conference fee includes a continental breakfast, lunch, conference materials, exposure to service providers in the exhibition area, and the opportunity to attend professionally presented educational sessions on the following topics:

• Planning for caregiving

• Understanding Medicare, Medicaid and the costs of long term care

• Community based services

• Activities for persons with dementia

• Stress Management

• End of life decision making

• Hospice

• Palliative Care

• Medication Management

• Oral Health and the older adult

• Safe caregiving at home

• Diabetes Management

• Treating Depression

• Mental health first aid for the older adult

• Keeping fit and caregiving

The conference is sponsored by the Charles County Department of Community Services, Aging and Senior Programs Division, and the Geriatrics and Gerontology Education and Research Program at the University of Maryland, Baltimore.

Pre-registration and payment is required by Friday, April 8. For additional information or to register, contact Cindy Olmsted, Long-Term Care Coordinator at 301-934-0128 or Those citizens with special needs please contact the Maryland Relay Service at 711, or Relay Service TDD: 800-735-2258.

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