Gavel is passed to new president of middle school's PTSA [Rodgers Forge]

Congratulations to the 2013-2014 PTSA executive officers at Dumbarton Middle School. These wonderful parents are Amy Kline, president; Ellen Sheridan, 1st vice-president; Jessica Gregg, 2nd vice-president; Heidi Bunes, treasurer; and Sally Mogilnicki, secretary.

Before handing the gavel to her successor, Cheri Bond Pegues thanked her fellow officers — Ann Shenasky, Robin Evans, Heidi Bunes and Chris Hartstein — for their "partnership and faithful service." Cheri went on to thank her committee chairs — Lisa Darwin, Rosa Flickinger, Lisa Marx, Mary Lord, Nancy Anastasiades, Maria Hipple, Kristen Zoll, Joy Lewandowski, Sue Parts and Holly Taylor — "who have done an outstanding job and deserve thanks and recognition." Special thanks went to Peggy Thorne, who for many yeas has done a super job of organizing the Teacher Appreciation Luncheon. Cheri also thanked the student representatives (first year on board), Jake Schindler and Tata Katins and faculty representative Cari Hammond.

Gratitude also was heaped on parents at St. Pius X School. Mary Beth Smith and Kathleen Durkin did a bang up job of coordinating the field day, Tiffany Jackson coordinated the Rita's fundraiser, and school cheerleaders who lent support.

As of early May, there were 837 paid members of the Rodgers Forge Community Association. Dave Crockett, membership chair, was greatly heartened and hoped that the trend would continue. A mere $25 payment of your annual dues enables the RFCA to protect residents via Community on Patrol, to keep the neighborhood looking spiffy by maintaining the public areas and providing Dumpster Day and to provide holiday celebrations, including the annual picnic .This money also allows the board to seek legal advice and representation in matters regarding covenants and other communitywide issues.

Speaking of covenants, why do we have them?

"The answer to that has as much to do with maintaining a positive image of the community overall, as it does with protecting our collective investments in our homes. At the same time, it also has to do with preserving the quality of life for individuals and minimizing the potential for negative impacts to adjacent neighbors" answered RFCA President Stu Sirota. He went on to explain that there was, and is, a longstanding tradition in the Forge for maintaining the architectural excellence and integrity of the original character of homes and "streetscapes" in the community. This policy was codified through the original restrictive covenants that were established by the Keelty Company when Rodgers Forge was first developed and subsequently transferred to the Rodgers Forge Community Association in 1960.

The Rodgers Forge architectural guidelines are separate from the Baltimore County zoning laws. They provide an additional set of legal standards designed to provide important protections where zoning laws cannot. This sets Rodgers Forge (as well as neighboring Gaywood) apart from most older row house neighborhoods in our region.

Over the years, Stu pointed out, "Our guidelines have played an important role in giving Rodgers Forge a reputation as one of Baltimore County's preeminent communities. Baltimore Magazine recently included Rodgers Forge in its Top 50 Baltimore Neighborhoods". Stu concluded by saying that "While the guidelines may not be a panacea and may even seem a bit draconian to some, it's been my experience that most residents value and appreciate the protections they provide, while recognizing that they strive to protect and enhance the common good." Well said.

Till we meet again —

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