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Thirteen District Residents Have Qualified to Run for Seats on McLean Community Center’s Governing Board
Three Adult, Two Teen Positions Available

McLean Community Center (MCC) has certified 13 Dranesville Small District 1A residents, five adults and eight teens, to run for seats on the McLean Community Center Governing Board. The board sets policy and provides general oversight for all facilities and programs of the Center, including the Robert Ames Alden Theatre and the Old Firehouse Teen Center. The center is located at 1234 Ingleside Ave.

Open Voting
Open Voting begins on Wednesday, March 17. Residents may vote in-person or by mail. To request a ballot for your household, you may fill out an online form, phone 703-744-9348 or send an email to elections@mcleancenter.org.

Three adult positions and two youth positions are open this year. The adult candidates who receive the three-highest vote counts will serve three-year (3) terms. Youth candidates, one from the McLean High School boundary area and one from the Langley High School boundary area, will serve one-year (1) terms. Youth candidates do not have to attend these schools to serve on the board.



Adult Candidates' Personal Statements

 

 Sepehr Harandi


Sepehr Harandi
sepehr.harandi@gmail.com

I am a McLean boy, growing I attended Churchill Road Elementary School, Cooper Middle School and Langley High School. Following graduating from Langley, I attended Longwood University where I played Division 1 soccer and later on obtained my master’s degree from Oklahoma University. Growing up in McLean was vital in my maturity and development into a man and ultimately I have ended up back in my hometown. I have been involved in the community in a variety of different ways through my years of coaching McLean youth football and basketball to sponsoring the McLean 5k and even playing sports for McLean Youth Sports. I choose to run for the MCC board because it gives me the ability to be a vital part of the community and stay connected to my roots while helping in any way that I possibly can.

Lisa Mariam

Lisa Mariam

lisamariammcc@gmail.com


McLean Community Center was a big factor in my decision to move to McLean in 2002. Attending classes, performances and events, I appreciate MCC’s welcoming atmosphere and outstanding programs that connect me to the community. I am interested in serving on the Board to help guide MCC through this exciting period of transition to reopening with a new director. I offer extensive professional and volunteer experience with organizations including ArtsFairfax, the National Gallery of Art, Girl Scouts and school PTAs. I look forward to supporting strong McLean traditions and exploring new opportunities to engage residents of all ages, abilities and backgrounds.

With over 20 years of experience in nonprofit programs and administration, I have a proven background in fiscal management and governance to use as a Board member. Combined with my strong network of connections in the public and private sectors, I will bring a broad community perspective to represent the residents of our special tax district.

As a longtime resident of McLean, I know the community well and over the years, MCC has provided my family with meaningful opportunities to learn new skills, engage in the arts, make new friends and celebrate our community. I would be honored to represent you on the Board to set policies and plan strategically for the next decade and beyond.

If elected these are the goals and values that I will prioritize:

  1. Increase awareness of MCC and programs:
    • Explore and build partnerships to increase the visibility of MCC
    2. Programs that respond to community needs and interests:
    • Interim outdoor activities as we recover from COVID-19
    • Programs and events for all ages and abilities
    3. Programs that address critical issues in our community:
    • Bring people together through programs and events that increase understanding of different perspectives
    • Programs that reflect the diversity of our community

Please visit me on:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lisamariammccboard2021
Instagram: lisamariam.mcc
Twitter: @mariam_lisa
to learn more about me and my vision for MCC. You can also reach me through email lisamariammcc@gmail.com to share your priorities for the future of McLean Community Center.

 Rasheq Rahman


Rasheq Rahman
rasheq.mcc@gmail.com

My name is Rasheq Rahman. I am running for the board of MCC and I request your vote. As a McLean resident for nearly 25 years, a scratch fusion cook and calligraphy collector whose small business proudly calls downtown McLean home, my young family and I have been enriched by the McLean Community Center (MCC)’s unique experiences. From music lessons and summer camps to date nights at the Alden, three generations of our family have taken part in MCC events. If elected, I would follow my mother, Yasmin, a past board member of the Friends of MCC, in serving the MCC community.

I seek an MCC Board seat because I want to bring my diverse background, professional experience and perspective to this cultural jewel that has been such an important part of my life at a unique time of challenge and opportunity.

While I have been fortunate to lead many different private and public sector organizations including Wall Street (Goldman Sachs), the IT sector (IBM) and the academic community (Yale University, Virginia Tech), serving on the MCC Board would be a special opportunity to serve a cherished institution. For this role, I will draw upon my leadership experiences on the national board of Asian Americans in Energy, the Environment and Commerce, an organization that organizes events bringing leaders together to act on international issues. I will also draw upon lessons learned in my present role as Chief Operating Officer at BEM Controls, where I steward resources that empower technologists to develop solutions addressing common energy problems.

Specifically, if elected I aspire to:
- Steward MCC’s resources as it emerges from the pandemic
- Increase the use of data and technology to improve the MCC experience
- Listen to community needs by focusing on a diversity of perspectives across opinion, age and background

Thank you for taking the time to learn more about me. If you’d like to be in touch, you can connect with me directly at rasheq.mcc@gmail.com or follow me on social media at the links below.

Rasheq

Twitter: @rasheqmcc
Instagram: @rasheqmcc
FB page: @rasheqmcc

 Saboo Shivani 258x285


Shivani Saboo

shivsaboo1@gmail.com

My name is Shivani Saboo and I am running for MCC Governing Board. I have lived in McLean all my life and wear my hometown with a badge of pride! I graduated from McLean High School in 2016 and recently graduated from the University of Virginia in 2020. As our town welcomes increasingly more young professionals, I hope to represent those voices and help MCC integrate more with the young adult community. Additionally, as an Asian-American, I hope to represent immigrant communities and push for increased celebration of the diverse cultures represented in McLean.

 Stratton Allison 258x285
Allison Stratton

allison.c.stratton@gmail.com

I am excited to run for the Board of the McLean Community Center because I believe in the difference that a robust and well-functioning community can make in the lives of its residents. As a former military spouse of eight years, I volunteered for leadership positions in service organizations in each of the locations we lived, and I’ve seen firsthand how beneficial these groups can be. My background in higher education coupled with a passion for lifelong learning gives me a unique perspective on the types of activities that might be most attractive for our stakeholders. Now that our growing family has settled down in McLean permanently, I am thrilled to have a chance to contribute to our community’s well-being by creating value for residents of all ages.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/allison.c.stratton
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/allisonstratton1 
Youth Candidates'
Personal Statements

Langley High School boundary area
 
 Ivy Chen


Ivy Chen

ivychen2004@gmail.com

I want to run for the Governing Board because I am profoundly interested in setting policies for the community. I am very interested in matters that will affect our lives and I love to be able to give back to my society. Beyond my academic life, I enjoy participating in a multitude of extracurricular activities, ranging from politics to student government. I want to be involved in leading, making and creating change within our community to ensure that we all create the most positive and helpful environment possible for all.

Instagram: @ivychen4mcc
Twitter: @ivychen68

Rowan Johns


Rowan Johns

rowanjohns887@gmail.com


I’m Rowan Johns, a 15-year-old sophomore at Langley High. I will ensure youth in my community are informed, heard and encouraged, with particular focus on community engagement during COVID-19 restrictions. My interests include music, ranging from school band to playing drums in a rock band. I love sports and have played soccer for 10 years. I learned responsibility early taking care of Jake, my beagle. Academically, I love history and civics. I am enthusiastic, caring and always willing to help others. I believe the combination of my interests and personality make me a good candidate for this role.

 Charlotte Loving


Charlotte Loving
charlotterloving@gmail.com

I have been a “customer” of the McLean Community Center my entire life. Whether watching a play, taking classes or enjoying the park, MCC has always been there for me! I know McLean well and have friends in both the McLean and Langley districts through softball, church and other extracurricular activities. I am the social media manager and president-elect of the Langley Nice Cream Club, which has taught me how to communicate, lead, plan and achieve goals. Since the Community Center has been such an important part of my past, I would like to be part of its future.

Instagram: charlotterloving
Twitter: charlotterlovi1

Youth Candidates'
Personal Statements


McLean High School boundary area
 
 Max Blacksten


Max Blacksten
max4mcc@gmail.com

Hello, my name is Max Blacksten. I am honored to have the opportunity to be in candidacy to serve the community that has given me so much over the past 16 years. I am passionate about helping McLean be the best that it can be, by using my position to improve the lives of teens in McLean through engaging teen activities and advocating for increased teen involvement in the MCC decision-making process. I have significant leadership experience and an understanding of politics through my involvement and leadership in Boy Scouts, Venturing, DECA, Model United Nations and other clubs and organizations!

Instagram: max4mcc 

 Tyler Jensen


Tyler Jensen
tylair16@gmail.com


I am running for the McLean Community Center Governing Board because I believe I can best represent the interests of my community and will offer potential to the board. I am qualified for this position because I serve on the Youth Advisory Council, I was elected by my peers to serve on the Committee on Raising Student Voices at McLean High School, and I am the current McLean Community Center Youth Board Member for McLean High School. I am deeply invested in leadership roles and I strive to give back to the community in any way I might. Thank you for your consideration.

 Cate Kanapathy


Cate Kanapathy
catekanapathy2283@gmail.com

I want to serve my community to the fullest extent, so I’m running for the Governing Board. I believe everyone can have positive impacts on not just the community, but the world, a world I strive to make a difference in. Therefore, I volunteer with various advocacy groups including the Uyghur Human Rights Project and Youth Climate Action Team. I’ve been accepted into the Youth Advisory Committee and several school clubs, giving me experience in responsibility, dedication and collaboration. I will improve McLean Community Center, but above all, I will improve your lives so I hope to represent you all!


 Noor Lecanu
Noor Lecanu

noornlecanu@gmail.com

I have grown up here and now that I’m 16 I see myself as not just benefiting from the community—I want to play a role in shaping the McLean Community Center’s future just like it has shaped my youth. Board members should have an appreciation of what McLean and the Community Center have to offer and ensure the continuity of that spirit. I have participated in many events in our community, and I especially have a keen interest in the arts, which was not only sparked by nurtured throughout my youth by the McLean Community Center. These have all been positive experiences and I want to play a role in ensuring it continues to provide these opportunities especially for its youth.

Instagram: noorlecanu
 Emma Saunders
Emma Saunders
emmasaundersformclean@gmail.com

As a native of McLean, I've earned the trust and respect of my peers and am dedicated to representing their diverse viewpoints.  I've demonstrated commitment and integrity through my leadership roles such as captain of the McLean travel soccer team, Safety Patrol captain, and as a member of several national honor societies. Passionate about giving back and supporting my community, I am involved with Girls Leadership Club, Cancer Kids First and taking active volunteer roles in many community events. I am a creative thinker and find unique approaches to problem-solving.   Thank you for this opportunity to represent your valued perspectives.

Instagram: EmmaSaundersForMcLean

Website: https://emma-saunders-for-mclean.constantcontactsites.com


Write-in Candidates are allowed.
Write-in candidates must receive at least 10 votes from 10 residents of the Center’s tax district in order to have their votes counted. For youth write-in candidates, the 10 votes must come from teens who live within the same high school boundary area as the candidate.


Open Voting:
Open Voting begins on Wednesday, March 17. Residents may vote in-person or by mail. To request a ballot for your household, you may fill out an online form, phone 703-744-9348 or send an email to elections@mcleancenter.org.

Please indicate how many adult or youth ballots are needed for your household. The requested ballots will be mailed to your home. The package will include a pre-addressed return envelope for each ballot. A signed affidavit must accompany each completed ballot. Please mail or drop off your ballot to McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Avenue, McLean, Va. 22101.

Open voting will end on Saturday, May 15, at 5 p.m. All ballots must be received at MCC by 5 p.m. to be counted.

 

In-Person Voting Opportunities:
Vote between the hours of 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. at McLean Day 2021 — A Drive-through Celebration, on Saturday, May 15, at McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Ave.

You may also vote in person during the Center’s Earth Day McLean—Act Locally event on Saturday, April 17, 9 a.m.–noon.

For more information, call the Center at 703-744-9348, TTY: 711, or email elections@mcleancenter.org.


Return to the 2021 Candidates' Page