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Board Member Profiles

Michael Denger, Chair

-Term Expires May 2016-

Mike Denger and his wife, Mary, have lived in the Village for 36 years and raised their daughters Lorna, Molly and Rachel here.  Mary and their daughters all graduated from Stone Ridge School in Bethesda.

Mike practiced law for 40 years until he retired from Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP at the end of 2010.  For 15 years, he co-chaired the 100+ lawyer global Antitrust Practice Group at Gibson Dunn.  He was a former Chair of the Antitrust Section of the American Bar Association.  Since his retirement, Mike has coached the Stone Ridge Mock Trial Team and has worked with various high school debate teams.

Mike serves as Chair of the Village Board.  He served as one of three Board members in 2014 that proposed revisions (subsequently adopted) to the Village's Committee structure.  He is also working as one of two Board members helping the Parks and Greenspace Committee develop a long-range plan for Board consideration.  He served as one of three members of the Village Legal Services Evaluation Committee, which, in 2011, prepared a report to the Board analyzing the Village's legal expenses, and made recommendations to reduce them.  He was also involved in the search for and selection of new Village Counsel.  Mike also served as Chair of the Village's Tree Committee in 2011-12.  In that role, he proposed a new approach to tree removal petitions (adopted by the Board in 2012) that was designed to reduce costs to the Village and affected residents while expediting the tree removal appeal process.  He also recommended (and the Village Board adopted) a multiple year reforestation plan that involved planting 45 trees each spring and fall (or 90 trees each year, compared to 25 annually in prior years) to help the Village catch up with tree needs in Village rights of way and buffer areas.  This plan is continuing in 2015.  Mike has also worked on Village efforts to replant trees along Connecticut Avenue.  He also took the lead for the Village on Financial Disclosure issues with the Maryland State Ethics Commission in 2012-13.

Mike wants to preserve those things that make the Village one of the most desirable places to live while holding the line on costs and making the Village more user-friendly for its residents.

Mike graduated from Northwestern University, where he serves on one of its National Advisory Councils, and from Harvard Law School.  As a former National Debate Champion, he helped finance his law school education by coaching the debate team at MIT.  He also was a founding member of the Board of the National Association for Urban Debate Leagues, which promotes interscholastic debate among students in hundreds of inner city high schools across the country.  He was an officer in the United States Army Reserve.

The Dengers have been actively involved in the community.  Mary has been active in numerous community and charitable activities, including the Garden Club of Chevy Chase, the Christ Child Society, the John Carroll Society and Stone Ridge, where she served as Board Chair.

Elissa A. Leonard, Vice Chair
-Term Expires May 2016-

Elissa is Vice Chair of the Board of Managers of Chevy Chase Village. She was past Chair of the Buildings Facilities Commission and has been involved in the Tree Committee, the Parks Committee and the Environment & Energy Committee. 

Elissa Leonard is a filmmaker.  She produced and directed the feature film "Sally Pacholok" which she co-wrote, based on the true story of an ER nurse who takes on the medical establishment when she uncovers an epidemic of misdiagnosis. The film stars actress Annet Mahendru.

Elissa recently made a one-hour public awareness video on Diagnosing and Treating Vitamin B12 Deficiency in the Age of Folic Acid Fortification.  She was a producer/writer at WNET-TV Channel 13's Innovation series (where she won two NY Emmy Awards) the Senior Story Editor at National Geographic Television's Explorer series, and a producer at The Educational Film Center's Powerhouse and Give and Take series.

Elissa is a member of the Board of Trustees of Levine Music.  She is married to Jerome (Jay) Powell, a Governor of the Federal Reserve Board.   They have three children, Sam (28) Lucy (25) and Susie (17). The Powells have been homeowners in Chevy Chase Village since 1998.  Before that they lived in Pelham New York 1993-1997.  They lived in Chevy Chase Village 1990-1993. 

Elissa received her undergraduate degree from Harvard in 1979 with a joint major in Visual and Environmental Studies and Government.  She attended Montgomery County Public Schools.

David L. Winstead, Secretary
-Term Expires May 2017-

David L. Winstead and his wife, Page, have lived in the Village for twenty-four years. They are the proud parents of three children: a son living in New York City, a daughter at Middlebury College and a daughter at University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. Mr. Winstead previously served as Board Secretary from 1987 to 1989.
Mr. Winstead is an attorney with the law firm of Ballard Spahr LLP, where he practices in the areas of real estate, transportation, public-private partnerships and legislative/regulatory matters. From 2005-2008, he served as Public Buildings Commissioner of the United States, and from 1995-1999 as Secretary of Transportation for the State of Maryland. He has also served as Vice Chairman of Montgomery County's Board of Social Services, and in 2002, as Chairman of the Federal Commission to Ensure Consumer Information in the Airline Industry.
As a member of the Chevy Chase Village Board of Managers, Mr. Winstead's expertise in real estate and transportation matters, as well as his experience with the officials and governance in both Montgomery County and the State of Maryland, provides an important perspective to Board deliberations. During this current term, he has assisted in numerous transportation, development and traffic issues, as well as state assistance with enhancements along Connecticut Avenue and Brookville Road.

Minh Le, Assistant Secretary

-Term Expires May 2017-


Minh Le and her husband Chris Dymond live on Oliver Street with their two children, Evan and Sophie, both of whom are currently attending Montgomery County public schools. They also have a friendly dog called Tabasco.

Minh has been an active resident of Chevy Chase Village since moving here with her family in 2003 from the Adams Morgan neighborhood of Washington D.C. She served as Co-chair to the Committee for Youth and Families. She was a member of the Democratic Process and Good Governance Committee and served on the Elections Committee (now Election Supervisors) since its inception. Recently, she was appointed to Chair the newly-formed Community Relations Committee, but resigned to run for the vacant Board seat. Minh is also active outside of Chevy Chase Village, having served on the boards of various non-profits. Currently, she is a Commissioner on the Maryland Governorís Commission on Asian American Affairs is also on the Kennedy Center Community Advisory Board.

Minh received her Masters degree in International Affairs with a concentration in Economics from the George Washington University. She worked in the field of International Development focusing on agribusiness, micro-finance and humanitarian assistance before taking a break to raise her family. Currently, she owns her own business as a life coach, helping to empower women in business and civic engagement.

Gary Crockett, Treasurer

Building Officer
-Term Expires May 2017-

Gary Crockett, of 142 Grafton Street, moved to the Village in 2008 with his wife Marla.  They have two grown children, Emily and Jeff.
Mr. Crockett's professional background is in software, telecommunications, and technology.  He has been a software developer, a manager, and CEO of a telecommunications software company.  He received seven U.S. patents related to his work.  He retired from the company he ran in 2003, and since then he has been mentoring early-stage startups in various technology fields.
The Crocketts moved to the Village from Texas not for work-related reasons, but because this is where they want to be.  "We were attracted by the beauty and character of the Village, by its excellent public safety record, and by the first-rate services the residents enjoy,"Ě Mr. Crockett said.  I'm pleased to have a chance to help ensure that the Village remains a great place to live.
Mr. Crockett hopes that his understanding of technology, comfort with numbers, and entrepreneurial perspective will be useful to the Board from time to time. 

Robert C. Goodwin, Jr., Assistant Treasurer

-Term Expires May 2016-


Bob Goodwin and his wife, Judy, have lived in the Village since 1976 and raised their four daughters here.  Bob has been an MSI soccer coach, a member of the Blessed Sacrament Parish Council, and an active volunteer in activities related to his daughters' schools.  He grew up on the DC side of Chevy Chase and attended Blessed Sacrament grade school and Gonzaga High School. Bob received his B.A. degree from Fordham University and his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center.  He served as a community development Peace Corps Volunteer in Thailand prior to law school.
Bob is familiar with the Board process and procedures from his work in the 1980s on the Village Traffic Committee and as the organizer and Chair of the East Bradley Lane Traffic Committee where he led the successful ten year fight for traffic controls on Bradley Lane.  He also is currently serving as a member of the Village Traffic Committee.

Bob believes that the Village has been exceptionally well governed and desires to see the traditions of its consultative approach to government continue while also looking for opportunities to improve Village procedures.
Bob's skills at working effectively with others to solve issues have been amply demonstrated in the various roles he has had over his professional career.  In the Federal Government he rose from an entry level GS 9 to the Senior Executive Service in six years.  In private law practice, Bob was a partner in a large firm and then was co-founder of a successful ten person international law firm.  In business Bob served as an executive officer and director of a NASDAQ listed company with over 1,000 employees, managing operations and legal affairs.
Finally, in his current career in academia he serves as Acting Dean of the Graduate School of University of Maryland University College where he is responsible for management of 106 employees and approximately 1,000 faculty providing education to over 14,000 students in the Graduate School. In all of these roles Bob has been known for his leadership and as a consensus builder and innovative thinker.
Bob also serves currently on the board of the Ice Mountain home owners association in West Virginia where he and Judy have a cabin and on the board of the Maryland China Business Council.
Bob is looking forward to working to help keep the Village the fine community that it is.  He believes that he possesses the personal qualities of integrity, reliability, listening skills and thoughtfulness to be a good addition to the Board.

Richard Ruda, Board Member
-Term Expires May 2017-

Richard Ruda of 108 Newlands Street is a retired lawyer.  He practiced law in Washington, D.C. for over 30 years.  For the last 20 years of his career Richard specialized in state and local government law, always on the side of state and local governments and government officials. He has lived in Chevy Chase Village since 1994. His three children, Julia, Alex, and Rachel, grew up on Newlands Street and attended Montgomery County public schools.
Richard thinks Chevy Chase Village is a wonderful place to live and is honored to serve on its Board of Managers.  Since his election to the Board he has served as Assistant Secretary and Secretary.  He has also served on the Village's Democratic Process & Good Governance Committee.
Richard was born and raised in New Jersey.  He has a B.A. degree from Yale University, graduate degrees in history from Yale and the University of London, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.  Richard is now a graduate student at the University of Maryland where he is studying French and Russian.