Local Commentary

A Penny For Your Thoughts: News of Greater Falls Church

pennymugBits and pieces around Mason District:

Congratulations to Tim Freilich of the Virginia Justice Center for winning the first David Carliner Public Interest Award from the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy. Tim is based in the Charlottesville office of the Virginia Justice Center, but does extensive work with day laborers and immigrant families in Northern Virginia. Tim’s “unwavering commitment to the public interest and his tireless work supporting Virginia’s immigrants in the efforts to find justice and fair treatment in the workplace” was cited as the basis for his selection. The award was presented in June at the Society’s annual convention in Washington, D. C. The Virginia Justice Center offers free legal services to low-income families and immigrant workers.  More information is available at www.justice4all.org.

pennymugBits and pieces around Mason District:

Congratulations to Tim Freilich of the Virginia Justice Center for winning the first David Carliner Public Interest Award from the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy. Tim is based in the Charlottesville office of the Virginia Justice Center, but does extensive work with day laborers and immigrant families in Northern Virginia. Tim’s “unwavering commitment to the public interest and his tireless work supporting Virginia’s immigrants in the efforts to find justice and fair treatment in the workplace” was cited as the basis for his selection. The award was presented in June at the Society’s annual convention in Washington, D. C. The Virginia Justice Center offers free legal services to low-income families and immigrant workers.  More information is available at www.justice4all.org.

The Higher Horizons Head Start and Early Head Start program in Bailey’s Crossroads was featured recently in the national Head Start Bulletin published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Director Mary Ann Cornish noted that the Higher Horizons staff has great sensitivity and diversity, helping new and at-risk families connect with referrals they can trust for mental health services that may be needed in our diverse community. In addition to her duties at Higher Horizons, also known as Hi-Ho, Ms. Cornish has served as president of the Virginia Council of Head Start Directors, and is vice-chairman of the Virginia Head Start Directors Council. Ms. Cornish is an inspiration to her staff, her students, and their parents. Of her career in Head Start, she says, “the magnitude of the work can seem daunting at times, (but) it never ceases to be fulfilling.”

The Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department is celebrating its 60th anniversary this year.  Although volunteer companies have protected Fairfax County property longer, the county hired its first career firefighters in 1949, and they made an annual salary of $2,500! In 1963, the first county-owned fire vehicle was purchased: an 85-foot ladder truck. In 1979, the county’s first female firefighter graduated from the recruit school.  In the early years of the Fire Department, attention was focused on fire suppression; ambulance service provided first aid, oxygen, and a hand to hold onto during the ride to the hospital. As the county grew, Emergency Medical Service was added in 1971, followed by the advanced life support program with state-certified Cardiac Care Technicians established in 1979. Today, in its 60th year, the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department ranks as a premier first responder department in the country, perhaps in the world. Mason District has six fire stations: Annandale #8 and West Annandale #23 (volunteer company); Bailey’s Crossroads #10 (also a volunteer company); Jefferson #18; Edsall Road #26; and Fort Buffalo #28.

 Penny Gross is the Mason District Supervisor, in the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. She may be e-mailed at [email protected]