Association Thanks Volunteers and Welcomes Resident Involvement

What does it take to create a thriving community? In River Hill, we are fortunate to have volunteers who are committed to making the village a great place to live, work, and play! Without the assistance of these volunteers, the association would have a difficult time accomplishing all that it does, and life in the village would be a lot different. We are grateful for these volunteers and their contributions of time, energy, and ideas.

Just like the members of the Board of Directors and River Hill’s Columbia Council Representative, the association’s committee members and other volunteers are residents who help build community. These residents help too with much-loved traditions like the annual Independence Day Parade and Haunted Hallow’s Eve event. They ensure that improvements made to residential properties in the village are aesthetically pleasing and based on the Architectural Guidelines and Covenants. They advocate for improvements to enhance the safety of pedestrians, bicyclists, and vehicles; educate residents on maintaining the health of our creeks and rivers and promote environmental sustainability. Volunteers help work the polls on Election Day, pick up trash, and much more. They are your friends and neighbors who are stepping up in both small and large ways to enhance the quality of life that benefits everyone in the River Hill community. Please make sure to thank them for what they do and let them know that their efforts are appreciated.

The Board of Directors recently identified three groups of volunteers who deserve special recognition and thanks for their efforts in FY2021 (May 2020 – April 2021): the Members of the Architectural Committee (AC), the Members of the Resident Architectural Committee (RAC), and the FY21 Election Committee Chairperson.

Resident Michael Cornell stepped in on short notice in March to Chair the Election Committee and oversee village elections held in April. Thanks to his previous experience as a member and Chairperson of the association’s Board of Directors, as a member and Vice Chair of the Columbia Association’s Board of Directors, and numerous times volunteering during village elections, he was up to the task. Several critical issues unexpectedly arose during the nomination and election process and Mr. Cornell’s knowledge was essential to the association navigating the challenges. Based on the issues that arose during this last election season and lessons learned, in June, the Election Committee provided the Board of Directors with recommendations for improving the election process in the village. The association is expected to consider these recommendations and update the association’s Election Guidelines and Regulations as a result. Stay tuned and watch for opportunities to volunteer to assist!

Also being recognized are the FY21 contributions of the AC and the RAC members. When combined, these committees have well over 30 years of experience conducting site visits, reviewing exterior alteration applications, and recommending and making decisions about changes to residents’ properties. In FY21 the members worked with association staff to modify procedures during COVID 19, adapted to Zoom meetings, and kept the review processes going with only a brief period of “downtime.” The resulting property improvements enabled residents to enjoy their properties during a time when being at home was essential and being outdoors was one of the few diversions available.

One important contributor to the architectural review process over the last 25 years has been Mohammad Saleem, a resident of the Pointers Run neighborhood. The association will miss him when he and his wife relocate this summer. Mr. Saleem began his service to the village first as a member of the RAC and as its Chair, then on the Board of Directors and as its Vice Chair, and in recent years as Chair of the AC. His background as an architect and his thoughtful insights have been of great benefit to the community. His departure provides an opportunity for other residents to volunteer and give back to the village.

Residents interested in becoming more involved with the association and contributing to making the village a better place are encouraged to check out the various committee options, volunteer to assist with an upcoming event, talk to a staff member, and watch for new opportunities coming soon!

If you would like to learn more about how to get involved and what areas are in your realm of interest/expertise, visit the association’s website at www.villageofriverhill.org. Click on the Board tab, and spend some time familiarizing yourself with the variety of active committees that work on behalf of the association and residents to continually improve the quality of life for all who reside in River Hill. If you have any questions, please direct them to Susan Smith, Village Manager, via email to manager@villageofriverhill.org.

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