March 31, 2022

Message from the County Executive

Dear Friends,

As we conclude Women’s History Month and begin Earth Month, it is an appropriate time to reflect on one of Montgomery County’s most historic and important women who had a profound influence and legacy throughout our world, as well as on me personally: Rachel Carson of Silver Spring.

Her 1962 book Silent Spring inspired countless people to commit to fighting for the protection of our environment and habitat. When I read it, it was extremely educational and it came at a time when no one was really talking about the environment. It was a seminal publication that began a shift in thinking. Ms. Carson was ahead of her time, and her compassion and foresight helped guide generations who continue to fight for better policies and more thoughtful behaviors that will help save this planet and our survival.

Ms. Carson once said, “The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.”

This April, in honor of Earth Month, I encourage you to read or re-read Silent Spring, as we celebrate the 60th anniversary since its publication. It is also a great time to learn more about the local hero who wrote it. I hope this book and the life of Ms. Carson encourage you, as it has me over the years, to recommit yourself to being a better steward and protector of this planet.

And I was pleased to close out Women’s History Month by honoring a woman who has been a trailblazing Montgomery County leader - Maria Gomez. Maria was the founder and long-time executive director at Mary’s Center. On behalf of the residents of Montgomery County, I was honored to give Maria a Proclamation for her decades of extraordinary work and her tireless advocacy on behalf of the most vulnerable.

Beware the BA.2 Subvariant—Get Boosted

According to the CDC, our COVID-19 “Community Level” currently remains at “Low.” But we continue to monitor the increase in cases of the new BA.2 subvariant, which is now the dominant coronavirus strain in the United States. BA.2 has caused between 51 percent and 59 percent of all new COVID-19 infections throughout our nation the week ending March 26, up from an estimated 39 percent of all new infections the week before. The hardest-hit region was the Northeast, where BA.2 caused more than 70 percent of all cases.

With a potential rise in cases due to this new variant, vaccinations and boosters remain more important than ever. Please note: if you have not been boosted, your vaccine strength is probably waning. Boosters can make a huge difference. This week, the FDA announced the emergency use authorization of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to allow adults 50 and older to get a second booster shot four months after their first booster dose. The CDC also noted that adults who got Johnson & Johnson's vaccine as their primary and first booster shots at least four months ago may now get an additional booster of Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna's vaccines. Our County-operated clinics and private sector partners have started offering the fourth booster. We urge everyone eligible to get the additional booster. Please go to for more information on where to get your shot.

No One Should Go Hungry

Over the past month, we have been taking time out to reflect on the past two years where everyone was impacted by COVID-19. We have been recognizing those we lost, honoring our public health and healthcare workers, promoting our housing, food and rental relief efforts and thanking our essential workers. It has been an opportunity to appreciate the work of so many in confronting this ongoing crisis.

We are concluding our remembrance month with Food Security Week. It is an issue I have been worried about and focused on long before the pandemic arrived. Food Security Week highlights individuals and organizations that have provided necessities and other resources to people and families in need throughout the pandemic.

This week, along with our food security team, I visited La Villa in Gaithersburg and had a chance to meet with the owner, Edwin Arbaiza, and his staff, who helped provide thousands of meals to the community. We then went to Yad Yehuda’s Choice food Pantry, which specializes in providing Kosher meals. The amount of food they distributed increased 450 percent during the pandemic. We also went to the Silver Spring Christian Reformed Church food pantry, which has seen a 250 percent increase in demand for food before the pandemic.

These two food pantries are among more than 100 Food Assistance Providers in our County, many of whom are volunteer-based. Food Assistance Providers have distributed more than 41 million pounds of food, and more than 27 million prepared meals, to the County’s most vulnerable populations during this pandemic. The County could not have provided this level of help without the work and commitment of the many Food Assistance Providers.

I also want to thank Nourish Bethesda and Marriott for their work in distributing food for Afghan refugees, and I was pleased to be able to join them in their efforts last week.

As part of my Fiscal Year 2023 recommend operating budget, we have proposed an Office of Food Resilience that will continue the County Government’s partnerships and efforts that we have established during the last 24 months. I am also recommending enhanced grant funding for food assistance programs, and $4 million to directly provide food to individuals and families most at need.

While COVID highlighted the issue, food insecurity was not created by the pandemic. Unfortunately, it is a bigger problem that requires our continued investment in our resources and support for our community partners to ensure that no one in Montgomery County goes hungry.

MCPS Community Engagement Officer Update

I wanted to take a moment to update you regarding the modifications to the Community Engagement Officer program via a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the school system and the police department and with input from the County Council and others.

Last year, a MOU between the schools and the police department established Community Engagement Officers to replace School Resource Officers. The MOU was signed in August 2021, and it ended the role of police in school discipline.

That MOU was based on the plan that MCPS would have mental health and social workers in our schools to support students, expend restorative justice efforts, and work with MCPS security staff. Due to nationwide staffing shortages for social workers and behavioral health specialists, filling these positions has been slower than expected and MCPS has not been able to place them in the schools as planned.

In light of increasing serious incidents including multiple firearms-related issues, and the inability to enact the planned alternative, the MOU is currently being modified. MCPS has been clear that they need additional flexibility in the short-term as they – like so many places around the country - see a rise in serious incidents, ghost guns, and other challenges in the schools right now. While I support their need and request for flexibility, I want to be clear that the changes to the MOU will not change the basic tenet that police officers are not involved in school discipline or patrolling the halls. They will be available at different times in the day to deal with issues that are criminal, and which would normally require calling a police officer – weapons, sexual assaults, gang activity for example. We will also be receiving regular updates about how the program is functioning, and we are hopeful that the schools will soon be able to hire additional staff to support the mental and emotional well-being of our students. At that point, we will again review whether this CEO program modification is necessary.

Our students need support and mental health resources to help them cope with issues and circumstances that are unprecedented. If you or anyone you know is a qualified social worker and would be interested in this important job to help our students, I encourage you to apply through MCPS’s employment website.

Thanks to Our State Officials for Their Help, Including Support for An Educational and Life Sciences Hub

The 2022 Maryland General Assembly session is wrapping up in less than two weeks and we are receiving a lot of good news out of Annapolis. Although the State budget has not been finalized, so far, the State Legislature has recommended about $222 million in new and additional funding for projects throughout Montgomery County. This will ensure that key County projects will be able to make significant progress in the upcoming fiscal year.

We appreciate the hard work of the entire Montgomery County State Delegation during this year’s General Assembly session. We are grateful to our Senate and House leaders for working closely with their colleagues to ensure the County’s needs were met.

In addition, Governor Hogan announced a supplemental State budget this week, which included a $10 million allocation to help take further action for capital funding at the WMATA site in North Bethesda. These funds will allow us to continue to grow this vision of an educational and life sciences hub for the region. I want to thank Governor Hogan for his investment and continued commitment to Montgomery County.

Thank you!

Marc Elrich
County Executive

March 30, 2022

Alcohol Beverage Services Launches Limited Availability Lotteries Providing Opportunities to Purchase Highly Sought Spirits; Registration Opens Sunday, April 3

Montgomery County’s Alcohol Beverage Services (ABS) will welcome the spring season with a limited availability whiskey lottery that provides opportunities to purchase highly sought spirits. The lottery is free to enter, but has varying residency requirements.

ABS has created two resident lotteries this year. The first lottery will be open to Maryland residents 21 and over. The second lottery will be open only to Montgomery County residents 21 and over. Each includes a wide range of spirits bottles, with some overlap. County residents will be able to enter both the State and the County lottery.

A total of 378 bottles will be available to customers for purchase in the lotteries. Among the spirits County residents will have an opportunity to purchase are a 2020 release of a Pappy Van Winkle six-bottle set, a Buffalo Trace Antique Collection five-bottle set and a Michter’s 20-year bourbon. Statewide residents selected in the lottery will have an opportunity to purchase items including bottles from Colonel EH Taylor Jr. Warehouse C.

Registration for the lottery begins at noon on Sunday, April 3. Consumers will have until 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, April 9, to enter the lotteries. After each lottery closes, a random drawing will be conducted and the winning numbers will be posted online at noon on Monday, April 18.

Winners will be able to purchase their bottle from a designated store from Friday, April 22, through Sunday, May 1.

Each resident entering the lottery will be able to select their top preferences from the list of bottles available. Bottle counts are listed on the registration forms. Details on how to enter the lottery, including an entry form, are available on the ABS website at

A third lottery will be open to Montgomery County alcohol license holders who are authorized to sell spirits on their premises. The licensee lottery will run at the same time as the resident lotteries and will boost availability of allocated items available by the glass in the County.

“ABS is able to procure items that neighboring jurisdictions cannot get, or get very little of, and we offer them at fair pricing to give people access,” said ABS Retail Chief Kent Massie. “You just do not see this happening elsewhere locally.”

ABS is the alcohol wholesaler of beer, wine and spirits for Montgomery County. ABS operates 25 beer, wine and spirits stores and one spirits-only store in Poolesville. It manages alcohol licensing, enforcement, and education for more than 1,000 businesses. Generating more than $35 million in net income annually, ABS profits are used to pay down County debt with a large portion deposited in the County general fund to pay for resident services that would otherwise be funded by County tax dollars.

Learn more about ABS by visiting the website and by following ABS on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

County Executive Elrich Will Join Celebration of 10th Anniversary and 500th Episode of Award-winning ’Montgomery al Día’ Radio Show on Tuesday, April 5

Montgomery Executive Marc Elrich will be the featured guest during the 500th episode of “Montgomery al Día” (“Montgomery Today”), Montgomery County’s National Association of Counties award-winning Spanish-language radio show on Radio America WACA 900AM.

The 500th episode and 10th anniversary will be celebrated on the show’s live broadcast at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 5. “Montgomery al Día” has been hosted and produced by Lorna Virgilí throughout its run.

Montgomery County has a wonderful diversity of residents and many cultures,” said County Executive Elrich. “A main goal of our government is to make sure all residents are aware of what is happening, what services are available and how they can get more involved in our community. Over the past decade, ‘Montgomery al Dia’ has been instrumental in communicating with our Latino residents. I congratulate Lorna for reaching this milestone and thank all of the special guests who have appeared on the show to keep our residents informed.”

“Montgomery al Día” is an innovative and effective tool implemented by the County’s Office of Public Information to inform the fast-growing Latino community in the County. “Montgomery al Día” is a weekly, half-hour live show that airs every Tuesday at 2 p.m. The show also is recorded and broadcast on the County’s cable television station County Cable Montgomery.

Since ”Montgomery al Dia” was started in April 2012, there have been more than 350 guests.

The launch of the radio show has coincided with an increase in the Latino participation in County events and public forums and an increase in the use of County services, such as the MC311 helpline.

The show’s main objective is to keep the Latino community informed about all County programs and services so they can have easy access to registering, participating and engaging with local government.

The Office of Public Information has expanded the "Montgomery al Día" program with daily news, public service announcements and a weekly agenda during the morning show "Calentando la Mañana" (“Warming Up the Morning”). That show is the longest-running talk radio show on WACA, which was established in 1987. The opportunity multiplies the amount of information the Montgomery County Government presents to Spanish-speaking residents and expands outreach to a broader audience.

Registration is Now Open for Office of Human Rights Maryland Civil Rights Educational Freedom Experience

Registration is now open for the 2022 Maryland Civil Rights Educational Freedom Experience. This annual bus tour retraces the Freedom Trail, the Montgomery (Ala.) Bus Boycott, the Greensboro sit-ins, voting rights and other significant events of the Civil Rights movement. The tour is sponsored by the Montgomery County Office of Human Rights.

The nine-day tour will leave Rockville on Friday, April 29, and return on Saturday, May 7. The tour will travel to Greensboro, N.C.; Atlanta; Birmingham, Montgomery and Selma, Ala.; Memphis, Tenn.; Little Rock, Ark. and Jackson, Miss. It will retrace the steps of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, Medgar Evers, the Little Rock Nine and many other civil-rights heroes.

Highlights on the tour will include visits to the Birth Home Museum of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr,. the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, the Civil Rights Memorial Museum, the International Civil Rights Center and Museum, the Rosa Parks Museum, the Freedom Rides Museum, the new Legacy and Peace and Justice Museums, the National Voting Rights Museum, the famed Sixteenth Street Baptist Church, the historic Edmund Pettus Bridge, the Little Rock Central High School, Medgar Evers’ home and the National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel.

Joan Mulholland, a freedom rider from the Civil Rights movement, will again be a special guest on the tour. Willie King, a former secretary of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference under the direction and leadership of Dr. King Jr., also will join this year’s tour. Ms. Mulholland and Mr. King will share their stories and provide personal accounts at the stops along the journey. They also will have copies of books and other materials available for participants.

Payment is due by April 19. The all-inclusive tour packages cost $1,850 per person for a single room, $1,486 per person for a two-person room, and $1,361 for a three-person room. Family and student rates are available upon request. Event details, including the registration form, itinerary and general information is available here. Early registration is encouraged. Checks are preferred but credit cards are accepted as payment for registration.

The trip includes travel on a deluxe motor coach with Wi-Fi, hotel, multiple tour and museum admissions, some meals and snacks.

The tour is hosted by the Montgomery County Office of Human Rights, in collaboration with Montgomery County Public Libraries, the African American Employees Association, the Lincoln Park Historical Foundation and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. The tour is available to County and non-County residents.

For additional information, please contact Tawania McFadden at 240-242-5640 or or Jim Stowe at

COVID-19 Remembrance and Recognition Month Wraps Up with ‘Food Security Week’

During the month of March, as Montgomery County marks two years of fighting the COVID-19 health crisis, the County is highlighting the sacrifices, dedication and efforts of individuals and partners in the community. During “Food Security Week” (March 27-April 2), the County is recognizing individuals and organizations who provided food and other vital necessities to individuals and families in need throughout the pandemic.

On Tuesday, County Executive Marc Elrich joined the Food Security Task Force for a tour and to hear a panel of speakers recall the early days of the pandemic, hearing more about organizations’ accomplishments and the critical partnerships and programs developed to meet the need in the community.

“No one should go hungry in Montgomery County," said County Executive Elrich. "Food insecurity was here before the pandemic and has been exasperated by the pandemic, inflation and high prices that make it hard for working families to make ends meet. We want to thank the nonprofit and faith-based organizations that have worked tirelessly to ensure our residents have access to nutritious and culturally appropriate food. Food insecurity is an important issue here in Montgomery County and we are committed to continuing to provide support and resources through enhanced grant funding for food assistance programs, and $4 million to continue to directly provide food to individuals and families most at need.”

County Executive Elrich visited the Capital Kosher Pantry, the Silver Spring Christian Reform Church and LaVilla Restaurant. These locations are just a few examples of the County’s outstanding models used for food distribution. The tour concluded with County Executive Elrich offering words of appreciation to the hundreds of partners that make up the food security network in our County. For information on food resources available in Montgomery County click here.

The month-long COVID-19 commemoration began with "Memorial Week," a remembrance of the lives lost to COVID-19 in Montgomery County and the sharing of stories of those individuals—including those County Government employees who lost their lives. The second week was “Public Health and Health Care Week,” which recognized the County’s Public Health Service and numerous other health professionals and providers who worked to keep the community safe, protect lives and meet the needs of those impacted. That was followed by "Housing Week," which highlighted efforts by numerous people and organizations who helped ensure people had a place to live and were not displaced throughout the pandemic. Last week was “Essential Workers Week,” where residents were encouraged to thank the many groups of essential workers who provided important services throughout the pandemic.

For more information about the month-long event, visit the County’s website.

County Executive Elrich to Provide Details and Answer Questions on Thursday, April 7, About Programs to Combat Climate Change in Fiscal Year 2023

County Executive Marc Elrich has presented his $6.3 billion recommended Fiscal Year 2023 Operating Budget to the County Council for its review. The budget included significant investments in efforts to combat climate change. The County Executive, at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 7, will discuss those efforts and answer questions from residents in an online climate change budget forum.

The Zoom presentation will be live on April 7 from 7-8 p.m. County leaders and staff will join County Executive Elrich to answer questions from the public. In addition to being presented on Zoom, the forum will be live-streamed for viewing on the Department of Environmental Protection Facebook page at

The recommended budget represents an increase of 5.7 percent from the FY22 approved budget. Racial equity and climate change programs are reflected throughout the budget.

Environmental sustainability and climate change investments in the budget include reducing energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions in public and private multifamily and commercial buildings and in low- and moderate-income housing. There also is funding to improve the health of urban forests and to replace fossil-fueled County vehicles with zero-emission vehicles.

To register and participate, click here.

County Executive Elrich to Address 2022 Energy Summit on Tuesday, April 5

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich will be among the featured speakers at the 2022 Montgomery County Energy Summit, which will be held from Tuesday, April 5, through Wednesday, April 6, at the Silver Spring Civic Building. This year’s Summit will focus on innovation in the areas of Technology Implementation, Policy and Program Design and Creativity in Financing Projects.

The Silver Spring Civic Building is located at 1 Veterans Plaza in Downtown Silver Spring.

The Summit will be a hybrid in-person and digital event. Participants can attend in-person activities, or view them virtually, on April 5. Sessions to be offered online on April 6.  County Executive Elrich will speak during the morning plenary on Tuesday morning.

The Summit is co-hosted by Montgomery County’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the US Green Building Council National Capital Region (USGBC NCR).

Now in its ninth year, the Energy Summit offers strategies, technologies and case studies focused on improving sustainability in the commercial, multifamily and residential built environment.

County Executive Elrich’s remarks will address the County’s efforts to implement its Climate Action Plan, to better adapt to the changing climate and funding priorities to combat the climate emergency.

“Over the past month, we have watched how our dependence on non-renewable resources is bad for our wallets, our economy, and national security – this is an important time to host our annual Energy Summit,” said County Executive Elrich. “I am proud that Montgomery County has set one of the most ambitious climate goals in the country—eliminating greenhouse gas emissions by 2035. However, we need everyone’s help in achieving this goal. The Energy Summit is an opportunity for Montgomery County and the building community to come together to discuss climate and energy strategies that will get us to our goals. If you are a resident or business committed to combating climate change and understanding the future of energy, please register to attend.”

The Summit’s target audience includes building owners, property managers, developers, energy contractors, residents interested in green building and sustainability professionals working in Montgomery County and the larger Delaware-Maryland-Virginia area. The Energy Summit’s in-person attendance is expected to draw 300-350 attendees.

“USGBC’s National Capital Region Community is thrilled to partner again this with the Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection to offer cutting-edge education focused on the latest trends in green building, energy efficiency, renewable energy, and related commercial, multifamily and residential topics,” said Terrie Clifford, USGBC NCR associate director. “Our missions align as Montgomery County uses a holistic approach to achieve its goal of net zero energy buildings and maintained alternative compliance pathways in its green code, including LEED certification as an accepted compliance path.”

This year’s Summit will host its first-ever “Electric Vehicle Ride and Drive” event on April 5, sponsored by DARCARS Automotive Group. It will feature the newly released Polestar and other electric vehicle models

“The beauty of the Energy Summit is that it brings the private sector, nonprofit groups, and local governments together to collaborate on climate and resilience planning efforts,” said Adriana Hochberg, Montgomery County climate change officer and acting director for the Department of Environmental Protection. “The Summit convenes expertise that will help develop solutions for green building and energy efficiency for our County and the region. We are proud to partner with the USGBC National Region to host this premier green building education and information event for another year.”

Online registration for those planning to attend the Summit in-person on April 5 will close on April 4 at noon. Onsite registration will be $95. Registration for the full Summit pass will include breakout education sessions, topical networking salons and in-person expo hall featuring energy-related products and services.

Education sessions will be approved for continuing education credits for Green Business Certification, Inc., and the American Institute of Architects.

To register and view the full schedule, visit the event’s website at Questions can be emailed to

‘The Country Doctor in the 1800s: The Life and Times of Dr. Edward Stonestreet of Rockville’ Will Be Theme of Montgomery History Presentation on Tuesday, April 5

“The Country Doctor in the 1800s: The Life and Times of Dr. Edward Stonestreet of Rockville” will be theme at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 5, in an online presentation from Montgomery History.

Clarence Hickey will relate stories and use historic photos of Montgomery County to describe the life of the country doctor and community servant, who lived from 1830-1903. The program will reflect the life and historic times of Dr. Stonestreet when he practiced medicine from 1852-1903. It is based on Mr. Hickey’s 2009 book Send for the Doctor.

The book chronicles Dr. Stonestreet’s medical education, 51-year medical practice of house calls and office visits as a local physician and surgeon and response to accidents and injuries. Several of the doctor’s patients are named and became famous in American history.

Mr. Hickey also will provide a brief look at the doctor’s service as a Civil War surgeon with the Union Army. He attended the wounded after the Battle of Antietam in 1862.

To view the presentation via Zoom, go to Webinar Registration - Zoom.

MCEDC Selected for ‘First IEDC National Equity Communities Cohort’ to Promote a More Inclusive Economy Through Best Practices

The Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation (MCEDC) has been selected by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) for its inaugural “Equity Communities” initiative. MCEDC is one of five economic development organizations nationally participating in the year-long program to further local and regional efforts to promote equitable practices and standards in economic development. In addition, the program will help develop frameworks for local models and national best practices.

The other members selected for the IEDC initiative are the City of El Paso, Tex.; Elevate Rapid City, SD; Village Capital in Cleveland, Oh.; and the St. Louis Development Corporation, Mo. The selected organizations will receive program guidance and expert technical assistance. Through site visits, webinars and cohort check-ins, an Equity Action Plan based on individual local needs and challenges will be developed.

IEDC and the five entities launched the Equity Communities initiative with an orientation held in conjunction with the recent IEDC Leadership Summit in California. MCEDC plans to focus its work on initiative topics such as entrepreneurial development, capital access and community wealth-building.

"Diversity is a hallmark of Montgomery County,” said MCEDC President and CEO Benjamin H. Wu. “We are one of the most diverse counties in the country with 150 languages spoken in our schools and one-third of our residents foreign-born. The IEDC Equity Communities program is a perfect guide for our MCEDC inclusive economy initiative. Fostering shared prosperity in a post-pandemic economic recovery and permanently is a strategic priority. We’re grateful to IEDC and The Rockefeller Foundation for their recognition of Montgomery County’s diversity and our commitment to equity.”

The initiative is part of a larger mission of the IEDC, as it recently released its Equitable Economic Development Playbook. The playbook examines structural racism in economic development while promoting equitable practices and standards. IEDC's Equitable Economic Development Playbook Program has been made possible by The Rockefeller Foundation, The Kresge Foundation and the Surdna Foundation.

"The economic systems in the United States have routinely valued profit over labor and COVID-19 laid bare the injustices that were already present for communities of color," said Otis Rolley, senior vice president of the Equity and Economic Opportunity Initiative at The Rockefeller Foundation." We are proud to support the IEDC's work to ensure equity is at the forefront of economic development."

Free Online Workshops for Job Seekers and Entrepreneurs Available in April

Free online workshops and one-on-one sessions geared toward assisting job seekers and entrepreneurs will be held throughout April. The workshops are sponsored by Montgomery County Public Libraries.

An internet connection and a device (such as a smartphone, tablet or computer) are required for participation.

The schedule of workshops in April:
  • Throughout April – Every Monday: 9:30-11:30 a.m. H.I.R.E. (Helping Individuals Reach Employment) Sessions. Meet virtually and confidentially one-on-one with a career counselor for advice and assistance. Register:
  • Monday, April 4: 1-3 p.m. Job Search Strategies (in a Pandemic). Learn about best practices for conducting a job search in the current (pandemic) job market. Register at
  • Wednesday, April 6: 1-3 p.m. How to Prepare for your Virtual Job Interview. Learn how to differentiate yourself from other candidates, be Zoom ready, package experiences, tell your story, be ready for challenging questions and feel more confident in your next interview. Register at
  • Tuesday, April 12: 1-2 p.m. Google Drive Basics. Learn how to use the cloud-based storage system Google Drive. Register at
  • Tuesday, April 19: 10-11:30 a.m. Introduction to Entrepreneurship. Workshop will cover the fundamentals of building a business and help determine if you are ready to become a small business owner. Presented in partnership with the Maryland Women’s Business Center. Register at
  • Tuesday/Thursday, April 19 and 21: 5:30-8 p.m. LinkedIn Boot Camp for 45-and-Over Job Seekers (Sessions I and II). Two-session/two-day workshop focuses on the mechanics and strategy of using LinkedIn as a tool to conduct a successful job search. Register at
  • Wednesday, April 20: 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. How to Apply for Jobs with Montgomery County Government. Learn for jobs with Montgomery County Government. Register at

For additional information about the program, contact Adrienne Van Lare at

March 24, 2022

Message from the County Executive

Dear Friends:

We often think of heroic actions as a moment in time captured on the news or on social media. But, two years ago, as we were trying to figure out what the COVID-19 virus was and how to best respond to it—we needed our essential workers to show up and provide critical services and items such as groceries, goods, fuel, transportation, healthcare and protection of people and property. And they did it: they showed up at a time when none of us knew much about this virus, the risks of exposure and the best ways to protect ourselves and our families. And despite the potential danger they might face, they went to work and did their jobs. They saved our lives, our economy, our country, and this County. This was heroic and we will always be indebted to them.

I would like to thank our essential workers for their hard work and dedication serving our communities over the last two years. They went to work, and they interacted with the public at a time when personal protective equipment was in short supply (and much of it was poor quality) and before vaccines were available. They continued to do their jobs throughout the pandemic. Their work kept our government running and kept services available for our residents. As we honor all of the County’s essential workers, from our grocery and retail store employees to our Police, Fire and Rescue Services, healthcare workers in the public and private sector, teachers and all the support in the schools that made it possible for schools to be safe and open, child care providers and government employees, I encourage all residents to take a moment this week to thank these workers for their service and to appreciate their risks and sacrifices to ensure that our essential needs were met throughout this pandemic.

I encourage everyone to share pictures on social media and show appreciation in other ways to acknowledge your family, friends and people who made a difference in our lives over the last few years. Please remember to tag Montgomery County on Twitter, @MontgomeryCoMD and on our Facebook page in order to boost this celebration of our essential workers.

Dr. Fauci Predicts Potential Uptick of COVID-19 Cases

This week our COVID-19 positivity rates, case rates and hospital rates remain low. However, as I noted last week, COVID-19 cases are surging in Europe, Asia, and Australia from the BA.2 version of the Omicron variant and increasing hospitalizations there. This past weekend, Dr. Fauci said that we were likely to see an uptick in cases in the United States but is hopeful that we won’t see another surge.

The bad news about the BA.2 subvariant is that it is about 50 to 60 percent more transmissible than the first omicron strain. The good news is that this strain does not appear to cause more severe illness or evade immune responses from vaccination or prior infection.

The bottom line is that there is no reason for anyone to die of COVID-19 anymore. We have vaccines, anti-virals and treatments now that we didn’t have even a year ago. But, if we ignore this new subvariant, think that this pandemic is over, not get regularly tested, and refuse to get vaccinated or boosted, then we should expect and be prepared for another surge and the possibility of straining our healthcare system yet again.

Vaccine and Booster Rates Slowly Increasing, But Disparities Persist

One of the main reasons Montgomery County has a death rate that is one-third lower than the national average is because this government, our residents, and our businesses have taken this virus more seriously than other jurisdictions around our state and nation. But we are far from perfect. Even though 86 percent of our population is “fully vaccinated,” only 56.6 percent of our eligible residents have received their booster or an additional dose.

In better news, we have reached about 60 percent in terms of pediatric vaccination. The national average is only 27 percent—we are more than double the national rate. That is incredible. And I am glad that we are up to 76 percent of our 65-and-older population have received their additional doses, but these are residents that we must make sure are boosted. I encourage everyone to check in on their parents, grandparents, friends, and neighbors in this age group.

There was a significant increase in residents receiving boosters during the Omicron Surge. Between Dec. 15 and Feb. 28, there was a 17-percentage point increase in boosters among White residents, a 25-percentage point increase among Asian residents and a 21-percentage point increase among Black and Latino residents. But there is a 21-percentage point gap between white residents and Black residents who are boosted currently. We have 71 percent of White residents who are boosted, but only 50 percent of Black residents. And there is a 27-percentage point gap between white and Latino residents – as only 44 percent of Latino residents are boosted. This is a big problem and, as we have noted week after week, those currently showing up to get boosted continue to decrease.

Race/Ethnicity % of fully vaccinated 12+ year olds who are boosted as of 12/15/21 % of fully vaccinated 12+ year olds who are boosted as of 2/28/22
NH White 54% 71%
NH Asian 44% 69%
NH Black 29% 50%
Hispanic 23% 44%
NH Other 35% 53%
Unknown 7% 12%

This government has made a concerted effort since the beginning of this pandemic to emphasize equity in all our COVID operations and outreach. And we will continue to concentrate our efforts in communities and zip codes that are underperforming in terms of vaccination and booster rates. If you need to be vaccinated or boosted, please go to and find out where to get your shot. Vaccines and boosters are available, convenient, and can save your life.

Recent COVID Omicron Surge Disproportionately Impacted Black County Residents

Over the past weekend, the New York Times featured a story that highlighted that nationally, adult Black Americans were hospitalized at higher rates than whites during the latest Omicron surge this winter. We are seeing the same disparities here in Montgomery County.

During the peak of the Omicron surge in January, Black Montgomery County residents were three times more likely to be hospitalized by COVID than our Asian population, and twice as likely as our white population. This disparity is not acceptable, and we must do better.

There is a clear correlation between hospitalization rates and vaccination rates, and all eligible Montgomery County residents need to be vaccinated and boosted. As I announced last week, my FY23 recommended budget includes a significant funding increase of $2.9 million dollars for the African American Health Program in DHHS and $2.1 million dollars toward our Latino Health Initiative. And we are developing a new outreach campaign that will be targeted toward our Black and Latino residents and communities to better promote and encourage vaccines and boosters.

Important Information for Those Not Insured

This past Tuesday was the last day that the federal government covered the costs of COVID-19 testing and treatment for the uninsured. April 5 will be the last day they will cover the costs of vaccination for this vulnerable population.

This change in policy is being driven by the failure of Congress to provide funding to the Biden administration. This is a national embarrassment and should be addressed as quickly as possible. Now is the time that we should be prepared for potential future surges and not repeat the mistakes that were made this time last year before the Delta variant when people thought the pandemic is was over.

The uninsured are the working poor and disproportionately people of color in our communities. They are already dealing with increasing gas prices, rents, and food. This is not the time to be cutting them off from a critical health need we should be providing to them.

The important news is that testing and vaccination at County government-operated clinics are currently FREE and will remain FREE for you to get tested and vaccinated. And if you or someone you know is uninsured, there are options available. Please call or contact 311 to learn about the services provided through our Department of Health and Human Services.

Please Continue to Self-Report Positive COVID Results

I continue to be impressed with our take-home rapid test and mask distributions. More than 1.6 million take-home rapid tests have been distributed to our residents, including over 1 million at our libraries alone. I want to thank our library staff, volunteers, and the staff from the Health and Human Services, Emergency Management and Procurement departments for their continued efforts to make these resources easily and readily available throughout our County.

The proliferation of take-home rapid tests has been a game-changer for County residents and families. However, we know that many people are taking these tests, testing positive, and doing the right thing by isolating, but they are not reporting the positive case to us. This means there are plenty of COVID-19 cases circulating out there that we don’t know about. I encourage everyone to please report your take-home rapid tests, it is critically important to our efforts to contain the spread of this virus.

Streeteries Will Remain Open At Least Through Labor Day

Our Streeteries program in downtown Bethesda, Silver Spring and Wheaton, which began during the pandemic, will be extended throughout the summer and at least through Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 5.

Our Streeteries program has helped reduce the transmission of the COVID-19 virus while helping keep our restaurants in business and workers employed. They have provided safe and family-friendly outdoor gathering spaces for residents throughout a challenging time. As the weather begins to warm up over the next several weeks, residents can enjoy these outdoor dining experiences and continue to support our local businesses.

Transit Drivers Appreciation Day

I was glad to visit the Silver Spring Bus Depot last week and present a Transit Driver Appreciation Day proclamation. Many Montgomery County residents rely on our transit system. Our transit operators have demonstrated dedication, work ethic and resilience and have proven themselves to be leaders in times of need, as they kept Montgomery County moving.

When you use Ride-On, please remember to be courteous and thankful to our bus operators and staff members. They deserve our appreciation and gratitude.

‘Expedited Hiring Weekend’ for the Police Department

In my FY23 recommended budget, I proposed increasing the salary for our police officers that will make their compensation among the best in the region. I am hopeful that the Montgomery County Council will approve this expenditure that will greatly help with recruitment and retention of Montgomery County Police Department (MCPD) officers.

If you, or someone you know, would like to serve our community as an MCPD police officer, please register and attend our Expedited Hiring Weekend this coming Saturday, March 26, and Sunday, March 27, for the August 2022 Police Academy Class. Anyone interested in attending this event must apply online at For more information about this event contact a recruiter at 240-773- 5300.

Applicants will complete the written exam, oral interview, and background screening phases of the application process in one day and they also can take a tour of the Montgomery County Public Safety Training Academy.

Cyber Security Threats

As I mentioned during my weekly media briefing, due to increased tensions with Russia over the war in Ukraine both President Biden and Governor Hogan have put out warnings about the potential of imminent cyber-attacks. We are taking this threat very seriously in the Montgomery County government.

We average over 15 million “events” per day that are logged. Events are activities like a normal e-mail received by a County employee, an attacker checking to see if we are vulnerable to a security hole, or someone logging into the secure network. Generally, they are not malicious but need analysis to determine that. We average over 40,000 malicious attacks per day that are tracked by our automated systems. These tend to be from overseas and range from a phishing e-mail up to a nation-sponsored attack.

This is serious business, and during this time, we want all employees and residents to be mindful of an increase in the degree and sophistication of these attacks as well as be prepared for any issues that may arise due to one.

The Best Places to Live in Maryland are in Montgomery County recently released its 2022 list of the ‘Best Places to Live in Maryland’ and Montgomery County is home to all five places in the top five and 18 of the top 25. Congratulations to North Potomac for being named the No. 1 best place to live in the entire state.

Montgomery County is a great place to live, work and raise a family, and this recognition shows just that.

As always, my appreciation for all you do,

Marc Elrich
County Executive

March 23, 2022

Streeteries Program in Bethesda, Silver Spring and Wheaton Will Remain Operating at Least Through Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 5

Streeteries were established as part of the Montgomery County Department of Transportation’s (MCDOT) Shared Streets program, allowing restaurants to establish outdoor dining areas on streets that have been closed to vehicular traffic. First created in response to the COVID-19 health crisis, the pedestrian-friendly program will be extended throughout the summer and at least through Labor Day, Monday, Sept. 5.

The County’s Streeteries are located in the downtown areas of Bethesda, Silver Spring and Wheaton.

“Our Streeteries program has helped reduce the transmission of the COVID virus while helping keep our restaurants in business and workers employed,” said County Executive Marc Elrich. "Streeteries have provided a safe gathering place for residents throughout a challenging time. These are family-friendly spaces that encourage community gathering and create enticing destinations throughout the County. As the weather begins to warm up over the next several weeks, I encourage all residents to enjoy these outdoor dining experiences and continue to support our local businesses.”

The program has been popular with businesses and residents. MCDOT assesses the road closures from an engineering perspective and is responsible for determining allowable uses of the roadway. The County’s Regional Services Centers have been collecting feedback on the program.

Residents who wish to provide their thoughts on a local Shared Streets program can call 311 and ask to be connected to the Regional Services Office for their area.

“Streeteries have become a model for street use as a community gathering place,” said MCDOT Director Chris Conklin. “In addition to being a popular destination for outdoor dining, Streeteries have contributed to people’s health and well-being by supporting walking, biking and spending time outdoors. These spaces have positively impacted the vibrancy of their communities. We are happy to extend this initiative throughout the summer.”

Coordination of the Streeteries involved multiple County departments, including Alcohol Beverage Services (ABS) and the Department of Permitting Services (DPS).

“Streeteries have a variety of models which meet the needs of each community,” said ABS Director Kathie Durbin. “For instance, some have extended cafes with alcohol service within that area and others allow open seating with a designated area to eat and drink. Overall, the Streeteries have been very positive. Businesses have been doing a good job developing alcohol policies to keep customers safe, we have not experienced a lot of violations.”

The initial concept was aimed to bring residents together in a safe outdoor environment while supporting County businesses that have struggled from the economic impacts of COVID-19. County departments have demonstrated flexibility and continue to assist businesses with long-term solutions to continue outdoor dining.

“Streeteries differ from the traditional ‘shared streets’ in that they have a hospitality focus and work to support multiple businesses,” said DPS Director Mitra Pedoeem. “Hospitality businesses located outside of the designated Streeteries can extend their service with an outdoor cafe through permitting. This will ensure overall public safety now that our rights-of-way are returning to normal use.”

For more information on MCDOT’s Shared Streets program and a listing of locations visit

Free Electric Scooter Trainings and Safety Clinics for Those 18-and-Older Will Be Available in April, May and June


Residents 18-and-older who are interested in electric scooter lessons will have the opportunity to attend four free clinics in April, May and June sponsored by the Montgomery County Department of Transportation. Participants will be able take a test ride, learn safety tips and get details on basic scooter laws.

The clinics generally will last about two hours and e-scooters will be available at each site. Those interested in e-scooters can stop in at any time during the two-hour clinics.

Participants must have a valid driver’s license. No registration is required to attend a clinic and walk ups are welcome.

The schedule of clinics:
  • Saturday, April 9. Noon-2 p.m. Westfield Montgomery Mall. 7101 Democracy Blvd., Bethesda (Outside Nordstrom’s at the top-level garage).
  • Saturday, April 30. Noon-2 p.m. Upper County Recreation Center. 8201 Emory Grove Rd., Gaithersburg (parking lot).
  • Saturday, May 7. Noon-2 p.m. Wheaton Ice Arena. 11717 Orebaugh Dr., Wheaton (back left parking lot).
  • Saturday, June 12. Noon-2 p.m. Montgomery College. 850 Hungerford Dr., Rockville. (Parking Lot 13).
Electric scooters can help bridge the "first-mile/last-mile" gap of public transportation to provide the flexibility to easily get to and from a user’s ultimate destination. Bird, Lime and Spin participate in the County’s Dockless Vehicle Pilot Program.

For more information about the e-scooter clinics, visit or call 240-777-8380.

MCEDC Receives $300,000 to Enhance Economic Development in Downtown Silver Spring

Downtown Silver Spring will be the beneficiary of a $300,000 Congressional appropriation for economic development to support the Arts & Brewery District. The funding was part of the Fiscal Year 2022 Federal budget agreement and will help strengthen the economy for one of Montgomery County’s critical business centers. The Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation (MCEDC) will receive and administer the funding.

The improvements will encourage businesses and visitors to Downtown Silver Spring, an urban district that is home to a thriving business and entertainment community. The area includes Astro Lab Brewing, Denizens Brewing Co., Silver Branch Brewing, and almost 160 restaurants, delis and bars. Silver Spring is a designated by the State of Maryland as an Arts & Entertainment District.

To support the Arts & Brewery District, MCEDC is working through the Montgomery County Commerce Cabinet in partnership with the Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT), the Silver Spring Urban District and the Silver Spring Regional Services Center and other community stakeholders.

The Montgomery County Commerce Cabinet, chaired by MCEDC, is a 14-member entity of executive agencies and organizations with a significant economic development mission.

As part of its Downtown Silver Spring initiative, the Commerce Cabinet coordinated the first round of funding for the Arts & Brewery District with $100,000 from MCDOT in Fall 2021. Congressman Jamie Raskin worked to have the $300,000 appropriation included in the Federal budget. It represents a second round of funding for potential revitalization efforts such as:
  • Infrastructure upgrades to include additional streetscape, pedestrian-friendly walkways, lighting and signage to guide visitors along the public art walk and between the breweries.
  • Job training partnerships with Montgomery College to train for highly skilled positions with breweries such as brew masters, facilities and equipment maintenance and other specialized skill needs.
  • Pop up space for local farm breweries during events and weekends which could include brewers in the Montgomery County Agricultural Reserve and others outside of the downtown Silver Spring area.
  • Murals and other public art displays.
  • Marketing and promotion of the Downtown Silver Spring Arts & Brewery District to attract residents and visitors to the area.
“Dynamic Federal-local partnerships help our Eighth District community thrive,” said Congressman Raskin. “I’m elated that President Biden has signed into law funding to support Downtown Silver Spring’s Arts & Brewery District, one of Montgomery County’s exciting business centers. This project will create economic development opportunities and invigorate Silver Spring, and I’m proud to see the project through as your congressional representative.”

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich was appreciate of Congressman Raskin’s efforts to gain the funding.

“The Downtown Silver Spring Arts & Brewery District is a game changer for our County’s economy and re-establishes this community as a destination location for dining, entertainment, and good times,”  said County Executive Elrich. “Representative Raskin is a national hero for his courage and leadership on Capitol Hill, but his leadership, advocacy and character is not new to the residents of Montgomery County. Throughout his career in public service, he has always and continues to demonstrate exemplary constituent service and support of our residents.”

Benjamin H. Wu, the MCEDC president and CEO, said keeping Downtown Silver Spring vibrant is critical for Montgomery County’s economic success.

“Over the next few months, MCEDC will convene community stakeholders to execute revitalization efforts for the Arts & Brewery District,” said Mr. Wu. “We look forward to working with the many partners who are committed to Downtown Silver Spring’s continued prosperity. We are grateful to Congressman Raskin for championing this important economic development project.”

‘RespectFest’ Free Event, Which Aims to Raise Awareness of Teen Dating Violence, Will Be Held in Wheaton on Sunday, March 27

Choose Respect Montgomery, which is dedicated to educating students and parents, and raising awareness, about teen dating violence, will host its annual “RespectFest” from 1-4 p.m. on Sunday, March 27, at the Wheaton Community Recreation Center. The free festival is open to middle and high school students, parents and youth-serving providers.

RespectFest will be a fun, interactive festival with games, activities, yoga, self-defense workshops, performances, a resource fair, free food and raffle prizes.

Students can earn Student Service Learning (SSL) hours for attending.

The Wheaton Community Recreation Center is located at 11701 Georgia Ave. in Wheaton. However, parking can big limited for big events, so attendees have the option of parking at Einstein High School at 11135 Newport Mill Rd. in Kensington and taking a free shuttle to the event. There also will be free buses from Seneca Valley High School in Germantown (leaving at 12:30 p.m.) and Richard Montgomery High School in Rockville (leaving at 12:45 p.m.) going to the festival.

RespectFest will open with opening comments from Debbie Feinstein, chair of the RespectFest committee, and Hana O’Looney, the student member of the Montgomery County Board of Education.

Among the activities will be 30-minute self-defense classes beginning at 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. Booths will be open focusing on dating violence, consent, bystander intervention and technology abuse.

A schedule of events and more information on RespectFest are available at

‘Essential Workers Week’ Continues County’s Recognition of Those Who Provided Support Throughout the COVID-19

Montgomery County’s month of recognizing and commemorating two years of fighting the COVID-19 health crisis continues this week with “Essential Workers Week” from March 20-26. The County is honoring people who provided important services and support throughout the pandemic.

“I would like to thank all of our essential workers in Montgomery County for their hard work and dedication to serve our communities and their needs during the pandemic over the last two years,” said County Executive Marc Elrich. “These essential employees went to work with public-facing jobs when personal protective equipment was in short supply and before vaccines were available. They made it possible for our residents to get services, stay safe and healthy. This week, we honor all the County’s essential workers, from our grocery and retail store employees to our own police, fire and rescue services, teachers, childcare providers, and our government employees. I encourage all residents to take a moment this week to thank these workers for their service and appreciate their risks and sacrifices to ensure that our essential needs were met throughout this pandemic.”

The month-long commemoration began with "Memorial Week," a remembrance of the lives lost to COVID-19 in Montgomery County and the sharing of stories—including those County Government employees who lost their lives. The second week was “Public Health and Health Care Week,” which recognized the County’s Public Health Service employees and other health professionals and providers who worked to keep the community safe, protect lives and meet the needs of those impacted. It was followed by "Housing Week," which highlighted efforts by numerous people and organizations to help ensure residents had a place to live.

For more information about the monthlong event, visit the County’s website.

County Executive Elrich, Anthony Stahl of Adventist Healthcare and Katie Rothenberg of The Tower Companies to be Among Speakers at 2022 Energy Summit

County Executive Marc Elrich, Anthony Stahl of the Adventist Healthcare White Oak Medical Center and Katie Rothenberg of The Tower Companies will be among the headline speakers at the 2022 Montgomery County Energy Summit that will be held on Tuesday, April 5, and Wednesday, April 6. The Montgomery County’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and U.S. Green Building Council National Capital Region are the co-hosts of the ninth annual Summit, which will have its in-person sessions at the Silver Spring Civic Building.

The Silver Spring Civic Building is located at 1 Veterans Plaza in Downtown Silver Spring.

This year’s Summit will highlight innovation in Technology Implementation, Policy and Program Design and Creativity in Financing Projects.

The Summit, the Washington region’s premier green building event, will be a hybrid in-person and digital event. Participants can attend in-person activities, or view them virtually, on April 5. Sessions be offered online only on April 6.

The Summit’s lineup of plenary speakers will include:
  • Marc Elrich, Montgomery County executive
  • Adriana Hochberg, acting director, Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection
  • Anthony Stahl, president, Adventist Healthcare White Oak Medical Center
  • Jennifer Gunby, state and local advocacy manager, U.S. Green Building Council
  • Katie Rothenberg, vice president of sustainability, The Tower Companies
Mr. Stahl and Ms. Rothenberg will be the event’s keynote speakers. They will address innovation in green building, energy efficiency and related topics from the perspective of their respective sectors of healthcare and multifamily development.

Speakers and participants will explore strategies, technologies, and case studies focused on spurring cutting-edge sustainable solutions for the commercial, multifamily, and residential built environment.

In addition to keynote and opening plenary remarks, the Summit will include breakout education sessions, topical networking salons and in-person expo hall featuring energy-related products and services. DARCARS Automotive Group will host the Summit’s first-ever “Electric Vehicle Ride and Drive” event on April 5. All education sessions will be submitted for continuing education credits for Green Business Certification, Inc., and the American Institute of Architects.

Online registration for the Summit is open through the morning of April 4. Limited day-of tickets will be available at the Silver Spring Civic Building on April 5.

To review the full agenda and register for the Energy Summit, visit

Questions about the Summit can be emailed to

Montgomery History Presentation on ‘Canal Quarters: Explore Seven Lockhouses on the C&O Canal’ Will Be Available on Monday, March 28

Nearly all of the 74 lift locks along the C&O Canal were accompanied by a lockhouse, where the locktender and his family lived. The stories behind seven revitalized lockhouses will be told in a Montgomery History presentation Canal Quarters: Explore Seven Lockhouses on the C&O Canal that will be available after 10 a.m. on Monday, March 28.

Overall, the lockhouses are in varying states of repair. Seven that have been revitalized are managed by the C&O Canal Trust as venues for overnight interpretive experiences.

Heather Barnes of the C&O Canal Trust will lead the closer look at what time period each lockhouse represents, the lives of the people who lived in them and what treasures they hold now.

To register to view the presentation, go to

Entries for Commission for Women’s ‘Girl Power Contest’ Must Be Submitted by March

The Montgomery County Commission for Women is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2022. In recognition of March as Women’s History Month, the Commission for Women invites residents to participate in its fifth annual “Girl Power Contest.” County residents, ages 5 and up, are encouraged to submit a short story, poem, drawing, or medium of their choice that addresses two key questions. Entries must be submitted by Thursday, March 31.

The following questions are the themes for this year’s Girl Power Contest: What do you see as the three biggest accomplishments women have achieved over the last 50 years? What three accomplishments do you believe would make the biggest impact over the next 50 years?

“The contributions of Montgomery County women to our County, State and nation’s history needs to be celebrated,” said County Executive Marc Elrich. “As we honor the women who have made history, we must also continue to build a culture of empowerment and opportunity for the next generation of female leaders. I encourage everyone to enter the Montgomery County Commission for Women’s ‘Girl Power Contest’ so they can help highlight the great work done by women and the impact they have in our County. For the last half-century, the Montgomery County Commission for Women has helped our women in our County by establishing networks, mentors, and resources enabling their success. I am grateful to the Commission for all the work it has done and continues to do to ensure that ‘her-story’ is told in Montgomery County.”

Entries typically are short stories, poems, and drawings. However, creativity is encouraged, and alternative creative expressive submissions are welcomed. Entries will be judged on creativity and content. Winning entries will be selected in four categories: elementary school, middle school, high school, and adult. Submissions will be accepted through midnight on March 31 and are limited to one per person. Written entries should be no more than 500 words. Entries should include full name, age, grade and school (if applicable), telephone number, and email address. Winners will be announced in April. All contest winners will be featured in Commission for Women social media and receive a swag bag.

Entries for the 2022 Girl Power Contest should be submitted online. Entries submitted by minors must include written permission from a parent or guardian and be the minor’s own work. All entries become the property of the Montgomery County Commission for Women and may be used for publicity purposes. The contest is sponsored by the Montgomery County Commission for Women, Montgomery County Public Libraries and Friends of the Library, Montgomery County. For more information, call 240-777-8300 or visit