Columbia board considering extending president's contract

Members `very happy' with what she has done

April 24, 2003|By Laura Cadiz | Laura Cadiz,SUN STAFF

The Columbia Association's board of directors is considering extending association President Maggie J. Brown's contract through 2007.

Brown is in the third year of her contract, which expires in February. Board member Pearl Atkinson-Stewart said the board's management appraisal committee has reached an agreement on Brown's contract that it will announce at tonight's council meeting.

"They're very happy with all of the things she's done so far," said Atkinson-Stewart, who chairs the committee.

As president of the 95,000-resident homeowners association with a nearly $50 million annual budget, Brown is the top administrator for the planned community that provides many recreational amenities to residents.

Atkinson-Stewart said Brown has been "a very, very good leader for us," and that can be reflected in the results of surveys conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research, which reveal high satisfaction ratings of residents.

A survey in February and March last year showed that 62 percent of the 800 polled residents think Columbia is on the right track.

A similar survey last month yielded an identical result.

In April and May last year, 52 percent of the 807 surveyed adults responded that they felt they are getting their money's worth from the annual property liens they pay to the association -73 cents per $100 of valuation on 50 percent of the fair market property value.

Brown declined to comment on the possibility of her contract being extended, saying she will wait for the committee's announcement at the meeting.

Brown was hired at $125,000, which the board increased to $130,000 in April last year.

The board hired her in February 2001 after a tumultuous nationwide search to replace President Deborah O. McCarty, who resigned in May 2000 - amid concerns about her leadership - after 20 months on the job.

The $35,000 national search was mired in board infighting, with some board members accusing others of racism because they supported a white finalist for the job instead of a black finalist.

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