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    Joshua Rales, president and trustee of the Norman R. and Ruth Rales Foundation, with Montgomery County Councilmember Nancy Navarro to his left, emphasizes why his foundation felt it was important to partner with Montgomery County and its public school system to establish a Building Educated Leaders for Life (BELL) program in the County. The innovative program for second and third graders is designed to address the Achievement Gap by continuing learning in summer. Among those also at the event on Nov. 17 to detail the program were, from left: Councilmember Hans Riemer; Damon Johnson of the BELL program; Councilmembers Sidney Katz, George Leventhal and Craig Rice; and Board of Education President Pat O’Neill.

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    Montgomery County Councilmember Roger Berliner, who chairs the Council’s Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy and Environment Committee, on En Sintonía con el Concejo del Condado de Montgomery on Radio America (WACA 1540 AM) to talk about what can be done to make streets safer for pedestrians and bicyclists, safety issues for senior citizens and the future of the County’s current system of liquor control.

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    Montgomery County Council President George Leventhal talks about the many ways the County is working to help veterans at the Oct. 24 event “Montgomery County Salutes Vietnam Veterans” at the Universities at Shady Grove. More than 800 people attended the first significant event the County has ever held to honor Vietnam veterans since the war ended 40 years ago. Other speakers at the event included, from left: U.S. Congressman Chris Van Hollen; retired CBS newsman Bob Schieffer, who served as the event’s host; and County Executive Ike Leggett. (Photo by Jeff Zyontz).

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    The Montgomery County Salutes Vietnam Veterans event on Oct. 24 at the Universities at Shady Grove included a rare reunion of the five former Vietnam prisoners of war who now live in the County. The capacity crowd of more than 800 gave a standing ovation to former POWs, left to right: Everett Alvarez, Jr., Fred Cherry, Mike Cronin, Cliff Walker and Larry Stark.

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    Potomac resident Everett Alvarez, Jr., a former Navy pilot who was held as a prisoner of war for 8 ½ years after his plane was shot down in Vietnam, was one of five former POWs present as Montgomery County saluted its Vietnam veterans on Oct. 24 at the Universities at Shady Grove. More than 800 people attended the first significant event the County has ever held to honor Vietnam veterans since the war ended 40 years ago. U.S. Congressman Chris Van Hollen (middle) was among the speakers and retired CBS newsman Bob Schieffer (right) was the event’s host. (Photo by Jeff Zyontz).

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    Montgomery County Councilmember Craig Rice (left) and Maryland Senate President Mike Miller, Jr., exchanged views on numerous issues and shared a few laughs when they were together for the taping of an upcoming edition in the unique series called No Boundaries on County Cable Montgomery (CCM). The show’s conversational format has Montgomery County leaders informally discussing subjects with other leaders in government and business. This edition, recorded at Mrs. K’s Tollhouse Restaurant in Silver Spring, will begin airing soon on CCM (Channel 6 on Comcast and CCM, Channel 30 on Verizon).

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    Searching for information and tracking the progress of Council bills is now a much-improved process via a new web tool. The new access is part of the County’s Open Data Initiative to make information more easily accessible. To find information about current bills.

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    18th County Council . . .

    The 18th County Council of Montgomery County was inaugurated on Dec. 1, 2014. Each member was elected to a four-year term. Seated, left to right: Hans Riemer, Nancy Floreen, George Leventhal and Tom Hucker. Standing: Roger Berliner, Sidney Katz, Nancy Navarro, Craig Rice and Marc Elrich. Photo by Clark W. Day

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