Last updated August 2020
Historic Chevy Chase DC is an all-volunteer historical society 501(c)(3) dedicated to preserving, celebrating, and sharing the unique history of our circa-1907 community. The organization was founded in 1990 and has an active nine-member board of directors.
Among the most treasured of our contributions is a steadily increasing collection of more than 32 oral histories of current and previous residents of Chevy Chase DC. These interviews have been conducted by board members, transcribed, and are posted on the HCCDC website for all to read and use for historical research.
The board also hosts at least two special speaking events annually; it sponsors a popular Historic Walking Tour of Chevy Chase DC each September; and is regularly engaged in efforts to preserve the stories and places that are core to our community. We also maintain this website (https://www.historicchevychasedc.org).
Our most recent grassroots activist project is to bring to light a mostly forgotten piece of our community’s history — the racially motivated displacement in 1928 of a small group of African American families who once owned six acres of the land where Lafayette Park is. See our Projects Page (Lafayette-Pointer Park) for the full story on this activity. You will also find a thorough history of our effort to create a Historic District in 2008 under “Projects.” In the near future, watch for HCCDC President Carl Lankowski’s comprehensive overview of our work over the past 30 years.
HCCDC is supported solely by membership dues. Its average annual operating budget is about $2,500, which pays for website hosting, membership outreach, operating insurance, a mail box rental fee, occasional equipment purchase, twice-annual Community Center space rental for author-talk events, and for refreshments served as these events. This year we have budgeted an additional $2,000 for professional website development to re-launch on the more dynamic platform of WordPress.
HCCDC memberships are offered at three levels: a $30 annual member, a $100 annual patron, and a $300 lifetime member. Board members each contribute a $100 fee annually in addition to their time and talents. The nine-member board meets monthly.
HCCDC Board of Directors:
Carl Lankowski, president
Carl Lankowski serves as president of Historic Chevy Chase DC. He has enjoyed a three-phase career as a member of university faculties, a think-tank research director, and as coordinator for European area studies at the State Department’s Foreign Service Institute. Pro bono service managing sister-city relationships sensitized him to local-global connections. During the Clinton administration, he was active in advancing the Transatlantic Environment Dialogue. He has been a resident of Chevy Chase DC since 2010 and northwest DC since 1990. Carl has also lived and worked in Aarhus, Denmark, Bonn and Konstanz, West Germany, and Brussels, Belgium. Read about his McKinley Street NW house on our House Histories page. You can reach Carl at email@example.com
Richard W. Teare, treasurer
Dick Teare is the long-time treasurer of Historic Chevy Chase DC and was also acting president for a brief period. His father was an architect with strong interests in historic preservation; Dick says he inherited the interest but not the architectural talent. He was a Foreign Service Officer for just shy of 40 years, with overseas service primarily in Southeast Asia (Philippines, Vietnam, Laos) and the Southwest Pacific (New Zealand, Australia, Papua New Guinea) and related assignments in Washington. In retirement, he directed the Center for Australian and New Zealand Studies in the Georgetown School of Foreign Service for several years. He has worked as an election official in every cycle starting in 2004 and is now captain at Precinct 51, Lafayette School, where each of his three children studied for at least a couple of years, long ago. He now has four grandchildren as well. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Charles Cadwell, board member and past president
Chas Cadwell has lived in Chevy Chase DC since 1981 and been a member of Historic Chevy Chase DC since 2007. He served as president of the organization from 2010-2014. A lawyer with the Urban Institute, Chas works with a team in developing countries on how to improve the policy ecosystem for more effective local governments, and in particular the relationship between central and subnational governments. Between 1990 and 2006 he was director of a research center at the University of Maryland’s Economics Department, focusing on institutions and growth in developing countries. In the distant past he worked in the White House Office of Consumer Affairs, in a research/advocacy team at the Small Business Administration, and in a pre-internet information business. A brief career in private practice included steps to open up the regulatory bars in interstate trucking to minority-owned firms. A Massachusetts native, he still owns his parents’ 18th Century saltbox in a rural town, where his interest in early political and economic history began. He and his wife cannot imagine how one family that previously owned their 38th St NW house raised seven children there. Chas can be reached at email@example.com.
Joan Solomon Janshego, secretary
Joan Janshego, HCCDC secretary, is a native of a small town in western Pennsylvania. She fell in love with Chevy Chase in 1983 because she saw the same tree-lined streets and older homes of her youth. An interest in oral histories was sparked by Joan listening to her immigrant grandmother talk about her life in Romania and the unusual circumstances of her journey to the United States. In retirement, Joan volunteers at the National Gallery of Art, helps immigrant families and takes courses at Georgetown University. Joan has had an eclectic career – working for two congressmen, teaching high school, and running a homeless shelter at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church as a volunteer. But her major occupation was as an Employee Relations Specialist at the National Archives for 23 years. She has a BA in Education from the University of Pittsburgh and an MA in Communications: Journalism and Public Affairs from American University. Joan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jordan Benderly, community liaison
Jordan has lived in Chevy Chase DC since 1974 and served on the HCCDC board since 2002. He and his wife Beryl have lived in the same house on Patterson Street where they raised their two children. Jordan studied architecture, city planning and urban affairs at Cornell and the University of Pennsylvania; he enjoyed research projects in both Chiapas, Mexico, and Bogota, Colombia. In the tumultuous ’60s he taught sociology at Fisk University in Nashville, then was a commissioned officer in the Public Health Service in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Washington beckoned with an opportunity as an economic consultant. Subsequently, Jordan pursued a career at the departments of HUD, HHS, Agriculture and Treasury. In retirement he returned to his interest in housing, and is currently with Long and Foster. His community activities have included volunteering on Martha’s Table food van, on the boards of the DC Preservation League and the Washington Print Club, and for over 15 years as a docent at the National Building Museum. A major distraction now are his three grandkids who fortunately live in the DC area. Jordan can be reached at jordan.benderly@LNF.com
Cate Toups Atkinson, vice president
Cate Atkinson has been a Chevy Chase DC resident since 2015 and is a hospital recovery room nurse. She grew up in Texas with seven brothers and sisters. Her first career was in print journalism, covering metropolitan news in the DC area for The Washington Times and the Journal newspapers before striking out in 1993 as a foreign correspondent in the Former Yugoslavia during the Balkan conflict. After a year, she returned to serve as United Nations Bureau Chief in New York City for The Washington Times. Cate earned a master’s in international journalism from the University of Southern California, and eventually went back to school for a nursing degree at Georgetown University. She lives on Chevy Chase Parkway with her husband and 16-year-old daughter, a junior at Edmund Burke School. She can be reached at email@example.com.
Tim Hannapel, board member
Tim Hannapel grew up in a big noisy family on Northampton Street, one of six siblings who all graduated from Wilson HS in the 1970s and ‘80s. His interest in neighborhood history was sparked as a teenager, when he worked on the local publications “Origins” (1975) and “Origins II” (1976), sponsored by the old Neighborhood Planning Councils, in which he contributed articles about the churches of Chevy Chase Circle, and the effect of the Depression on Chevy Chase. His interest was revived more recently when he learned of new scholarly research on the Black community on Broad Branch Road and its demise in 1928 by eminent domain to make way for the building of the then all-white Lafayette School and park. Although Tim lives near Dupont Circle, he retains strong ties to Chevy Chase DC, where his parents and one sister still reside. By day, Tim is a supervisory lawyer with the National Treasury Employees Union, the largest independent union for federal workers. He earned his undergraduate degree in history from Brown University (1981), and his law degree from Georgetown (1986). Tim can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
James Fisher, board member
James Fisher is a retired federal employee of the Smithsonian Institution and an Army veteran. He is also a seventh-generation direct descendant of Captain George Pointer (1773–abt. 1832), and has been working with his colleague, Tanya Gaskins Hardy, as well as historians and local government officials to tell the story of Captain Pointer and his descendants, who were evicted from their land on Broad Branch Road, NW, in Chevy Chase DC in 1928 due to racism.
Tanya Gaskins Hardy, board member
Tanya was born and raised in McLean, VA, and is one of the newest HCCDC board members. She recently retired after 41 years in education, the last 24 years as a Fairfax County Public Schools Behavior Specialist. Upon retirement she founded a genealogy service, A View of The Past, an outgrowth of her love of history and genealogy. She started dabbling in genealogical research 30 years ago and has traced her lineage to the 1700s. Together with her father Robert Gaskins she wrote a book about her maternal ancestry titled “From Buckingham to Ballard – A Genealogical Study of Thomas Mac Agee and Caroline Walker.” Tanya’s company has assisted more than 50 clients with genealogical research in a variety of projects. Most recently she and her colleague James Fisher have worked with historians to delve into the story of Capt. George Pointer — Fisher is a seventh-generation direct descendant — whose descendants were dispossessed of their land along Broad Branch Road in Chevy Chase DC because of racism in 1928. Tanya is a member of the National Genealogy Society and the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society. Tanya can be reached at email@example.com.
Keene Taylor, Jr., advisory board member
Keene Taylor has lived and worked in Chevy Chase DC for nearly 60 years since moving here as a child in 1963 and has served on the HCCDC board since the mid-1990s. His work in residential real estate through his family business, Taylor Real Estate, has enabled him to acquire deep knowledge of the architecture and social history of our community, and his celebrated Historic Walking Tour of Chevy Chase DC each fall is always in high demand. His only time away from his hometown was during his tenure at Rice University in Houston, and after graduating he returned here to work for the engineering firm of Booz, Allen Hamilton. In 1989, he changed careers to join his family business. He has been involved in numerous HCCDC projects in addition to his walking tours, including a historic-district research effort and publication of the coffee table book, Lafayette Life. Keene can be reached at www.TaylorAgostino.com
Past HCCDC Officers and Board Members:
The 1990 founding members of HCCDC include Mary Rowse, Reena Racki, Charles C. McLaughlin, Todd Kosmerick, Pierre Paul Childs, William West Hopper, and Jill Schatken.
Listed in alphabetical order are previous board officers and members: Wendy Adams, Betsy Amin-Arsala, Walter E. Beach, Paul Bennett, John Blackburn, Jenny Chesky, Donna Crisalli, Kamer Davis, Andrea Dean, Krystyna Edmondson, Robert Ellis, Stephanie Faul, Douglas Lee Frazier, Chris Fromboluti, Riordan Frost, Donetta George, Colleen Girouard, JoAnna Graham, Doris Ingram, Ford Isanhart, Bill Jones, Pam Lankowski, Brian McClure, Alix McDonough, Nancy McKinley, Beth Merritt, Toby Millman, Betty Nock, Susan Parry, Kathy Petersen, Ted Pochter, Rick Price, Edith Roberts, Jill Schick, Steven Seelig, Nancy Slade, Jessica Springsteen, Judy Stein, Keene Taylor, Bob Truax, Harold M. Voorheis, Marelise Voss, Esther S. Washington, Dick Wattis, Jeff Wilde, Bob Zich, and Steve Zipp.
We welcome any comments or questions about HCCDC and/or our website — email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you wish to become a member or volunteer, and if you want to join our email list, just let us know by email. We will alert you of events, news and posts. Here’s how we can be reached:
Historic Chevy Chase DC
PO Box 6292, NW Station
Washington, DC 20015-0292