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My Endorsement of Bill Starrels

November 6, 2016

Written by Victoria Rixey


Like many Georgetowners, I am a big supporter of Bill Starrels for re-election. This is a tough year for our ANC – three experienced and popular commissioners are retiring at the same time, and out the door goes 30 years’ collective experience. That is just one small reason to vote for Bill, who has served our ANC2E with distinction for 16 years. There are many other reasons.

Bill has a vast list of contacts in DC government and in Georgetown, and is very well regarded. He knows everyone, and they spring into action when he asks. In my various roles on the Citizens Association of Georgetown Board, including as its president, I have seen this time and again. This is really important for Georgetowners who want to see results. I’ll give one example, though there are too many to even list. When I chaired CAG’s Historic Preservation and Zoning Committee, I reached out to Bill because we were very concerned that the proposed development on Prospect Street on the Doggetts parking lot would add to already tough traffic congestion. The developer did not have space for an on-site loading berth, so street side loading would be needed. Not only did Bill agree to meet our committee members and the developer on site to look at the problem, but he also arranged for a team of five people from DDOT to join us. From this meeting, Bill was instrumental in brokering a solution that appeased all, including the folks at DDOT. Not an easy task.This is what Bill does.

Bill Starrels excels at forging consensus. I’ll tell you why this is important, as the workings of the ANC are sometimes confusing to people. Each commissioner works with individual homeowners, CAG, or businesses to solve minor problems, but major projects and issues are reviewed by all ANC2E commissioners in executive session and in public meeting. Issues are voted on and the majority rules. Bill may not always agree with his colleagues, but he is respected, to the extent that he has been endorsed by all three retiring ANC commissioners. Bill likes to find solutions among disparate views while keeping the interests of his constituents at the forefront. This is what Bill does.

Bill is a nice and caring man – he does what is right. Years ago, a Georgetown University student died in a basement fire in a house on Prospect Street. I sat next to Bill in Holy Trinity Church at the memorial service with tears rolling down our eyes, and we thereafter resolved to make rental housing safer. We worked with the University, CAG, and all pertinent DC government agencies to begin licensing houses that are for rent, and requiring a DC code inspection. Ten years later, that process is still effective and helps protect vulnerable students. Bill saw a need and took a leadership role. This is what Bill does. 

Bill is results oriented. The West Heating Plant project has languished due to mixed signals to the developer from the Old Georgetown Board. After redesign and redesign, the developer is again ready to go back to the Old Georgetown Board to begin anew the approvals process. Bill Starrels met with the developer and the architect, David Adjaye, last month, and is fully supportive of the new design. He is calling for this project to proceed with utmost haste – Bill understands what his constituents want, and will not stop until this project is approved. And he can certainly help with that. This is also what Bill does.

I don’t see anything his challenger brings to the table except change for change’s sake. Let’s stick with a winner and elect Bill Starrels in ANC2E05. 

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Dine and Donate for Amatrice at Via Umbria

October 16, 2016

(Photo by: Jeremy Goins)

To support the city of Amatrice which fell victim to a destructive earthquake in August, Georgetown's Via Umbria hosted an earthquake relief fund gala, raising a total of $21,000.


To reach their goal of $25,000 for the Italian American Relief Fund, the Italian market and cafe is offering a Dine and Donate promotion, where guests have the option of making a $20 donation to the Fund in-store in exchange for a plate of Spaghetti All’Amatriciana – the region’s namesake dish.

Johanna Hellrigi, Susy and Bill Menard (Photo by: Jeremy Goins) Johanna Hellrigi, Susy and Bill Menard


The Dine and Donate promotion is available during lunch on Fridays and Saturdays throughout the month of October.


Guests can also make a tax deductible donation directly to the Italian American Relief Fund from home, being sure to identify Via Umbria as their sponsoring organization.


Via Umbria is located at 1525 Wisconsin Avenue NW.


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Hemphill Fine Arts Presents Elizabeth Catlett & Benny Andrews

September 21, 2016

Hemphill Fine Arts presents Elizabeth Catlett & Benny Andrews in celebration of the Grand Opening of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. The NMAAHC is the 19th museum of the Smithsonian Institution and is located at the foot of the Washington Monument on the National Mall in Washington, DC. The museum provides for the collection, study, and establishment of programs and exhibitions related to African American life, history, art, and culture. It is a place where people can learn about the richness and diversity of the African American experience; it is a place of meaning, memory, reflection, laughter, and hope. 


In addition to the works on view by Catlett and Andrews we have gathered other pieces by historically important African American artists, including works by Margaret Burroughs, Herbert Gentry, Sam Gilliam, James Wells, Walter Williams and Alma Thomas. These additional works may be seen upon request.


View exhibition details here.


Special hours: Sunday, September 25, 2016, 12:00 - 5:00 pm 


Exhibition on view until October 29, 2016


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