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Chuck Bean to head Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments

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The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments announced Wednesday that Chuck Bean, president of the Nonprofit Roundtable of Greater Washington, will take over as its new executive director next month.

The nonprofit council, whose 300 or so members include leaders from 22 Washington area jurisdictions, provides a forum to discuss regional issues, including transportation, air quality, emergency-response planning and economic development. Bean will replace David J. Robertson, who has led the organization for 10 years.

Bean said Wednesday that he looks forward to moving ahead with the organization’s key initiatives, such as Region Forward, a long-term plan for improving such things as environmental sustainability, traffic and public transportation, and Economy Forward, designed to bring new industries and jobs to the area.

He said he also wants the organization to collaborate more closely with the federal government and hopes to work with the government on appointing a liaison between the two. “There’s been a very strong connection. We just want to take it to the next level,” he said.

Frank Principi, the organization’s board chairman and a Prince William County supervisor, praised Bean, calling him “one of our own.”

“He’s got a decade of experience of doing what COG does — bringing together the public, private, nonprofit, military and academic communities . . . and then proposing solutions to some of our most pressing problems, like traffic, water and homeland security — making sure that we are ready for a terrorist attack on the area around our nation’s capital.”

Bean is a longtime member of COG’s Emergency Preparedness Council, “so he’s been there, done that,” Principi said.

Robertson called the selection of Bean “an excellent choice,” adding that since the September 2001 terrorist attacks, the organization has significantly ramped up work around emergency preparedness — work whose effects, he said, were evident in the region’s response to Hurricane Sandy.

He said he looks forward to seeing the organization tackle such issues as transportation development.

“When you have 22 local governments all pulling in the same direction, there’s not a lot you can’t achieve,” he said.

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