Volunteers Essential to Association’s Mission

Much of James Rouse’s vision for the new city of Columbia was based on themes of building community and growing people. Although the River Hill Community Association (RHCA) has a small paid staff, it relies heavily on volunteers to govern the Association and assist in fulfilling the organization’s mission to enhance and promote the health, safety, common good, and social welfare of residents. These volunteers are essential to the process of building community, and they nurture growth in others as they in turn grow as individuals. In a series of articles in The Villager, over the next two months we will acknowledge the positive contributions made by members of our community.

The members of the Association’s Board of Directors (RHBOD) are volunteers who contribute their energy, time, and expertise to help make the Village of
River Hill the great community that it is. DengFeng Liu and Jenny Chu recently completed their terms on the RHBOD. Over the last two years, they brought
new perspectives and insight to the group. Their positions have been filled by Esti Schabelman, who ran for a position during village elections, and Choith Atlani, who was appointed by the current RHBOD in May 2014. Michael Cornell has served as the village’s Columbia Council Representative for almost 8 years and is an ex officio member of the RHBOD. In this capacity, he provides a much valued link between our community, the Columbia Association, and Columbia as a whole.

It isn’t just adults who volunteer to make River Hill a great place to live. We are fortunate to have youth who have grown up taking advantage of the programs and events offered by the Association and want to give back to the community. Tiffany Kan and Pradyun Dixit are two teens who have made a difference. Ms. Kan has served on the Teen Advisory Committee (TAC) and recently completed two years as a Student Member of the RHBOD. Mr. Dixit served as member of the TAC for several years. Both youth just graduated from River Hill High School, and as they move on to college, they will take with them valuable leadership
skills, a variety of personal connections, and a real understanding of what it takes to build and contribute to one’s community. We also congratulate Ms. Kan,
who in recognition of her community service, is one of six recipients of this year’s Maggie J. Brown Spirit of Columbia Scholarships.

Fortunately, others are stepping up to maintain a high level of youth involvement in our community. Michael Dai, a rising senior at Atholton High School and prior member of the TAC, has been appointed as the Student Member of the RHBOD for the 2014 – 2015 school year. In this role he will attend the RHBOD meetings and will chair the TAC. We welcome Nathalie Eegholm and Victoria Kogan who will join Arienne Guiv, Ali Hovet, Karen Ni, Madison Sage, Nicole
Young, Stacy Young, and Jennifer Zhang on the TAC. These youth are already busy this summer preparing a float for the Independence Day Parade and holding Teen Tech Help sessions for seniors.

Watch for next month’s installment in our series on the contributions that volunteers make on behalf of the Village of River Hill.

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