Board of Directors

2021-2022 Board of Directors

Barr Weiner, President
Alice Kelley, 1st Vice President
Mike Rifer, 2nd Vice President
Hans Miller, Treasurer
Alli Bernstein, Corresponding Secretary
Susan Shinkman, Recording Secretary

At-large
Carol Lynn Bamford
Isaac Bowers
Elizabeth Ferenczi
Kathy Gibbon
John Korbel
Todd Pearson
Marti Thomas

Who We Are

Carol Lynn Bamford
In 1993 I moved to Cleveland Park for a temporary job and have remained ever since! My first home was an apartment in the Kennedy-Warren where I found many friends, younger and older, who shared my enthusiasm for the tree-lined streets, parks, and shops. My temporary job turned permanent, and I am fortunate to continue to call Cleveland Park my home along with my family, two dogs, and our home on Lowell St amidst many new neighbors. During the day I am curator of musical instruments at the Library of Congress and, when not at work, I have been active in our neighborhood, whether serving on the boards of the Cleveland Park Historical Society, Cleveland & Woodley Park Village, and the Cleveland Park Club, or as founder of Girls on the Run-DC and Prince George’s County. I founded Girls on the Run in Ward 3, at my daughters’ school, with the goal of serving all girls in all Wards. I enjoy celebrating our neighborhood with programs and activities for all while at the same time finding ways to support issues that face our changing and growing community. I enjoy collaborating, thinking outside the box, and I whole-heartedly agree with the CPCA bright and cheery sign that reads: Everyone’s Welcome Here!

Alli Bernstein, Corresponding Secretary
Cleveland Park has been my home since 2005, first as a renter, then as a homeowner in a wonderful condominium building on Connecticut Avenue. I went to American University for my B.A. and M.A. and moved from AU Park to Cleveland Park when I was hired by Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS). Unsure on which side of the county I would be teaching, I decided Cleveland Park provided easy access to wherever I landed. I continue to live in Cleveland Park for the wonderful neighbors, and easy access to DC. I have worked for MCPS as a Special Education classroom teacher working with highly impacted kindergarteners and today as an Early Interventionist visiting homes in Silver Spring and surrounding communities. I recently completed a graduate program in Social Justice Education and think about equity in our schools and community every day. I bring to the CPCA board years of out-of-the-box thinking, school and community leadership and a progressive vision of how Cleveland Park can embrace the changing world while still keeping its charm.

Isaac Bowers
My wife and I moved to Cleveland Park in 2011 because we loved its proximity to Metro and downtown; walkable, tree-lined streets; unique local businesses; and easy access to Rock Creek Park. Our appreciation has deepened as we have learned about the area’s character and history and met our diverse and accomplished neighbors. We have chosen to raise our family here (Eliot is now almost 4 and Maxine is almost 2). I would like to serve on the Board because I believe that as citizens we can have the most impact closest to home. I will work cooperatively to preserve and improve our community. I hope my various perspectives – as a father, former environmental and land use attorney, and current Executive Vice President of the family real estate business – will be useful.

Elizabeth Ferenczi
I have lived on lower Macomb Street for the past seven years and served for four on the CPCA Board. Originally from New York City, our family moved permanently to Washington in 2007. We did a great deal of research before choosing to live in Cleveland Park, prioritizing a strong, walkable community where we would know our neighbors. My special interests are schools and education, and I look forward to the upcoming renovation of John Eaton. I have a Masters Degree in Curriculum and Teaching from Columbia Teachers College. I worked for over 15 years as an elementary school teacher and as an admissions director. I currently direct the sponsorship of and scholarship programs for The Hope for Children Fund which serves vulnerable children in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. In Washington I volunteer as a Reading Boosters tutor at Eaton and as an adult ESL teacher at The Washington English Center. On the CPCA board, I have learned a great deal about citywide and local issues. I support sensible growth in our neighborhood and believe I am well positioned to act as a bridge between those who would preserve Cleveland Park as it is and those who envision a more lively and densely-populated neighborhood that is attractive to singles, young families and sustainable businesses.

Kathy Gibbons
After many decades as a DC homeowner in AU Park and Forest Hills, I sold my house and moved to Cleveland Park in 2016.  The plan was to rent at the Kennedy-Warren for a year while locating a condo or coop to buy. Six years later, I am still in Cleveland Park, still living at the KW, and thankful on a daily basis for our walkable neighborhood, with most everything we need right here and the Zoo, Rock Creek Park, the Tregaron Conservancy, Hillwood, and the Cathedral as our luxuries. 

By way of background, I am a lawyer and spent my work life at Fannie Mae, Ginnie Mae, Ernst & Young, the HUD Secretary’s Office, a law firm, and on the Hill…a typical assortment for a career in mortgage securities. Family-wise, I have an adult daughter who was raised and schooled in DC, and now works here and lives with her husband in Silver Spring.  I have been active in neighborhood affairs since I have been in Cleveland Park, focusing on affordable housing as a member of a couple of local groups, with some efforts on development and transportation.  I have admired the intelligent, open, and non-aggressive approach of CPCA to the issues we are facing. We can make friends and develop solutions together, encouraging more to become involved.  We appreciate our wonderful neighborhood and have a positive attitude toward change.  It’s a privilege to serve as a new member of the Board.

Alice Kelley, 1st Vice President
I moved to Cleveland Park in 1986 when my two children were 10 and 13. I liked the suburban-urban feel, the tree-lined streets and gardens, the easy access to shops and downtown and the fact that I have friends from graduate school in the neighborhood. I joined the CPCA, the Cleveland Park Club and the then new CPHS. At the time, Saturday night square dances were held monthly at the CP Club. For at least a decade I sat on the board of the Cleveland Park Club and organized talks by CP notables. Over the years and now again I represent the CPCA at meetings of the citywide DC Federation of Civic Associations. In 2013, after 30 years, I retired as Senior Producer from ZDF German Television’s North American Bureau in Georgetown. I went to Berlin for 2 ½ years to reconnect with friends and former colleagues. In late 2015 I returned home to Cleveland Park and to be closer to my daughter and her 6 children in Baltimore. I joined the CPCA board in 2017. After years of covering national and international news, it has been fascinating to now focus on the local level. It is also a challenge to become informed about housing, safety, environmental and other policy issues and to consider their impacts on Cleveland Park. In an effort to spur greater community involvement and as head of CPCA’s Greening Committee, I helped organize an outdoor meeting with Riversmart in April 20I18 and the Sustainability Fair held at the CP Library earlier this month. At a time of great change in the city, getting neighbors to become and stay involved will remain a challenge. Just getting to know my neighbors on the board of CPCA has made the challenge that much more worthwhile.

John Korbel
My wife Pamela and I have lived in Cleveland Park since 1982, most of which has been in our current home on Newark Street. Both of our sons attended NCRC, where I served on the Board. They subsequently went on to other local schools. They both participated in sports for the Police Boys Club, baseball for Northwest Little League, and Stoddert Scorer where I also coached, their teams of course. Pamela, taught at Beauvoir and, subsequently, John Eaton where she spent most of her career. Both Pam and I feel particularly connected to Cleveland Park and have a great appreciation for our wonderful and friendly neighbors. I served on the CPCA Board for ten years, most as the CPCA Treasurer and a few years in an at-large capacity. As Treasurer, I led our successful process to establish CPCA as a 501(C) 3 organization and the implementation of automated financial management and monthly reporting on year to date budget/actuals. Most recently, I helped improve the methods for communicating CPCA meetings and look forward to continued facilitation of CPCA connection with our membership.

Hans Miller, Treasurer
My wife, Shari, and I moved to our home on Quebec Street in 2012 from Woodley Park. We love Cleveland Park and feel fortunate to be here with our many interesting and welcoming neighbors. I am an attorney in the Organized Crime Section of the Department of Justice. I joined the CPCA Board in 2018. I have worked with neighbors to try to ensure that the much needed renovation of Hearst Park is done in a thoughtful way that preserves the natural beauty and multi-use functionality of our community’s largest publicly-owned open space. I enjoy serving on the Board because I believe a strong neighborhood association that represents all facets of Cleveland Park strengthens our neighborhood and gives us an opportunity to positively influence and support the renewal of the Connecticut Avenue commercial district.

D. Todd Pearson
My wife and I have lived in our neighborhood for the last eight years. We were attracted to Cleveland Park because of its historical character, walkability, proximity to transit, retail amenities, and strong community. We initially moved into the Kennedy Warren and purchased a home on Cathedral Avenue two years later. We have four children: two will attend Eaton in the Fall, where my wife serves as the Home and School Association co-treasurer, and two attend Washington Latin. I am interested in joining the CPCA board to help preserve the qualities that attracted my wife and me to Cleveland Park and to ensure our community and commercial corridor remain vibrant. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Information Systems from Virginia Tech and a MBA from the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. I am Senior Vice President of Acquisitions and Development with the B.F. Saul Company. Some of my recent projects include the renovations at the Kennedy Warren, Park Van Ness, and a mixed-use development in Rockville, MD. While I know adding a “developer” to the CPCA board may be concerning for some, I believe I can bring a unique perspective. My work has been focused on building consensus within communities, mixed-use smart growth development, and creating vibrant retail environments. I am extremely knowledgeable of the local residential and commercial real estate market and efforts to foster successful neighborhood communities. I believe we can do some things to support our commercial corridor but I think our biggest strength is our historical charm and authenticity.

Mike Rifer, 2nd Vice President
My wife, Tara, and I moved to Cleveland Park in 2014 after many years abroad. I work in international development – presently with USAID. We bought a beautiful 1940s mid-century on Rodman Street and have spent the past five years making this house and this community into our home. We brought our first daughter, Maya, home here in 2016, and are expecting a second baby daughter this Fall. One of the most fun parts of parenthood has been watching Maya begin to explore and connect with her neighborhood. This is the perspective that I hope to bring to the CPCA Board: that of a father who views our community through the eyes of his two-year old, and through needs and experiences of a young and growing family. Our neighborhood’s distinctive, historic character is its greatest asset. But I also believe that, to remain vital and best serve the needs of its residents, Cleveland Park must also be willing to evolve. I support sensible growth, an economically vibrant commercial corridor, and a walkable, family-friendly community. I’m confident that we can thread that needle in a way that preserves the unique character of Cleveland Park, which we all cherish.

Susan Shinkman
In 2012 I moved from Philadelphia to Washington, DC to accept the position of Director of Civil Enforcement at the Environmental Protection Agency. Although I had lived in DC before, Glover Park, Capitol Hill, Dupont Circle, I decided to try an apartment on Connecticut Avenue, in the Kennedy-Warren building. While I had expected the neighborhood to be interesting, I was pleasantly surprised at how much it had to offer. The diversity and convenience of commercial establishments; the variety of residences, single family homes and apartments; and abundant greenery for walks, made me realize that I wanted to stay here. I would like to work with CPCA to ensure that these advantages remain and grow. I have been particularly attracted to the Cleveland Park Library, which is already providing substantial services to the community, but seems to have potential for even more. I began volunteering at the library when I moved here and since I retired from EPA in 2017, I have been volunteering as a docent at the Library of Congress. As a lawyer, I represented the city of Philadelphia for many years, and understand the political and financial challenges facing neighborhoods trying to represent their interests within the city structure. At EPA and at Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection I worked on a wide variety of environmental issues. I hope that my experience, and genuine interest in using my time in retirement to help keep Cleveland Park vibrant, would be helpful to the CPCA Board.

Marti Thomas
I moved to Washington DC after college, and made Cleveland Park my home in my first apartment on Connecticut Avenue in 1995. My husband Michael and I purchased our house on Idaho Ave in 2001, which we share with son Nate, daughter Iris, and 6 pets. We love this community and all that it offers all of us. 

While much of my focus over the years has been on my career in government and the private sector, night law school at Georgetown, and then raising my family, in recent years I’ve been able to spend more time in our neighborhood. As a native New Yorker, I appreciate how fortunate we are to enjoy access to the natural beauty of park lands and green space, and to be able to walk everywhere. The love of being outdoors drew me daily to Hearst Park first with my children, and later with my dogs where I met a lively and engaging dog crowd. Our shared concern over the lack of transparency surrounding the-then rumored Hearst Park renovation led to us joining others in 2016 to form Neighbors for Hearst Park, hoping to preserve its natural beauty and protect its Heritage Willow Trees. The journey we began together led us to learn a great deal about engaging with local officeholders and government bureaucrats, but also about trying to come up with consensus and solutions to address complex matters of shared concern. It has been enormously gratifying to work with such interesting and dedicated people who have since become close friends. 

I am a happy new gardener at the Cleveland Park Community Garden, and some years back enjoyed a plot at the Newark Street Garden. During the pandemic, I was able to take on a second, part-time position teaching four-year olds in a learning pod at the Cleveland Park Club, and last year I substitute taught at NPS. I was a court-appointed-special-advocate for a child in DC Foster Care.  I served on the Board and as co-chair of the Public Policy Committee of the Tahirih Justice Center, which serves immigrant women and girls.  

Activism in my teens led me to run Federal campaigns in college and I began my professional career in politics and policy. I ran legislative operations on the Floor of the U.S. House of Representatives for a decade under Democratic Leader Gephardt and worked on tax and budget policy in the Department of the Treasury in the Clinton Administration. Since then I have worked in the private and nonprofit sectors doing government relations both in-house and as an outside consultant.

I greatly appreciate the CPCA for providing a constructive forum for matters of interest to Cleveland Park. I look forward to meeting more of our great community and supporting the vital work of the CPCA. 

Barr Weiner, President
My wife and I have lived in DC for over 20 years, moving from Georgetown to Cleveland Park eight years ago. Having grown up in New York City, I continue to marvel at being five minutes from downtown by Metro while living among trees and birds, rabbits and foxes, and still having wonderful, walkable amenities. We love it here, and I’ve always believed in supporting the things that matter to you. So, I joined the CPCA board five years ago and am excited to continue working on issues important to Cleveland Park. In agreeing to run for CPCA President two years ago, I set as goals (1) diversifying and growing our membership and enhancing opportunities for members to inform and support CPCA’s activities, and (2) enabling CPCA to provide the community with as effective and informed a voice as possible on topics important to us. Even in the face of a devastating pandemic, we have made strides in both respects to productive effect. Our community has both the benefit and challenge of strongly held, divergent views on how best to protect and promote our diversity, vitality, and extraordinary neighborhood design. In finding common ground as a community, we can most effectively advocate for our neighborhood. Collaborative engagement and outreach have been recurring themes of my volunteer activities and in my day job in the Commissioner’s Office of FDA. I welcome the opportunity to continue supporting CPCA’s efforts to bring together, inform and advocate on behalf of our unique community.