Joshua I. Smith's longstanding relationship with W. Gary Fleming Jr., who helped him to create Maxima Corp. eight years ago, may have finally come full circle.

In February, Smith, founder and president of Maxima Corp., appointed Fleming, a personal friend who had been instrumental in the company's inception in 1978, as executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Bethesda-based computer firm and government contractor.

A former neighbor of Smith's in the late 1970s, Fleming described how the company, which had revenue last year of $25 million and has been called the fastest-growing minority-owned firm in the country, "started over our kitchen tables."

Smith came to Fleming, then a senior vice president at American Security Corp. running a $2 billion branch network, for advice and management expertise and, once the company had been formed, appointed him to the board of directors, Fleming said.

"Out of our personal relationship grew our professional relationship," he said.

The appointment of Fleming, a management heavyweight who has held senior posts with companies many times the size of Maxima, as the senior operating officer signals a significant step for the company in its bid to become a much larger firm with far less dependence on federal contract awards.

"The reason Josh was interested in me was because of my background; I have the large company experience. If I made mistakes, I made them on somebody else's payroll.

"And I won't allow the company to do some of the things I did before in other jobs ," he said.

Fleming added that he also brings a "wealth of experience from commercial businesses" to Maxima.

"A lot of minority companies have talked about getting out of government contracting. But we're further along than others," he said.

With about 95 percent of its business in government contracting in recent years, Fleming said, Maxima is slowly increasing what has been only a marginal interest in commercial ventures.

Through acquisitions, it has boosted those operations to 15 percent this year and has set a goal of 40 percent by 1990.

An important indication that Maxima will one day be a major contender in the commercial marketplace, said Fleming, is the 18 percent interest that aerospace conglomerate Martin Marietta maintains in the firm.

"That was the first time a Fortune 500 company had made that type of investment in a minority-owned company," he said. COMMUNICATIONS

Waverly Press Inc. in Baltimore has promoted Robert F. Bounds to treasurer. Formerly assistant treasurer, Bounds will be responsible for credit and accounts receivable, insurance, and bank and cash management.

Irv Lichtenstein, veteran radio broadcaster, has been appointed sales manager of WMTG-AM in Gaithersburg. He was formerly with radio stations WWDC, WTOP and WEEL in the Washington market.

Former special assistant to President Reagan Robert F. Bonitati has joined The Kamber Group as vice president for public affairs. He served as the primary representative to organized labor for the administration's Office of Public Liaison after an earlier stint as director of public affairs for the Air Line Pilots Association.

Ogilvy & Mather Washington has appointed three new account supervisors: Keith Tarr-Whelan, recently executive director of Save Our Security; Lyn E. Snoddon, formerly public relations vice president of Sotheby's, and Mary Lou Downing, of a Washington public relations firm. In addition, Gabrielle Le Bow has been named account executive.

J. Walter Thompson USA Inc. has named Gloria Motto, supervisor of the U.S. Marine Corps account, to the post of vice president in the advertising firm's Washington office.

Abramson Associates Inc. in Washington has appointed Leslie A. Forbes as a senior broadcast buyer in the media department. She had been broadcast buyer for J. Walter Thompson with responsibility for several North Carolina markets.

Information Marketing Services Inc., a Vienna direct marketing consulting firm, has named Mark Amtower director of marketing. Amtower was most recently list manager at Earle Palmer Brown's direct marketing division in Bethesda. BANKING, FINANCIAL SERVICES

Annapolis Federal Savings and Loan Association has appointed as its new president and chief executive officer Gilbert L. Hardesty, formerly executive vice president of Farmers National Bank. Hardesty replaces Charles L. Richards, who will become vice chairman.

Bay National Bank in Annapolis has named Donna Stevens as loan officer. Stevens earned a degree in business management and accounting from Anne Arundel Community College.

Adams Express Co. and Petroleum & Resources Corp., two affiliated Baltimore investment companies, have appointed separate presidents to fill the positions that Robert J. M. Wilson, who is retiring, had held simultaneously. Joseph M. Truta, formerly executive vice president, will become president of Adams Express, while Richard F. Koloski, an eight-year veteran, will become president of Petroleum & Resources. W. D. MacCallan will remain chairman and chief executive officer. PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

Atlas Personnel Agency has announced new appointments in its area offices: Robert T. Steigler, as controller in the Washington office; Ann Check, as personnel counselor in the new Reston office, and Sharon Levin, as office manager in the Rockville office.

Cohen-Karydas & Associates, an architecture and planning firm, has appointed Terry Matlaga as director of marketing. Formerly of Environmental Design Group, Matlaga will oversee long- and short-term planning and designing and setting marketing objectives.

The Washington Speakers Bureau Inc. in Alexandria has appointed Michael P. Menchel vice president. He was formerly director of public relations for the St. Louis Cardinals.

Mark D. Moseley, who dabbles in a variety of business ventures while he's not kicking field goals for the Redskins, has formed Mark Moseley Productions Inc., which initially will produce and distribute sunrooms and spas and intends to develop other home and commercial building add-on structures. Moseley's partner in the new venture is Benjamin J. Benita Jr., president of a Sterling, Va., marketing and distribution firm.

Development Research Associates Inc., a Reston management consulting and training firm, has named Robert Wall Edge as president and Raymond H. Fernandez as chairman of the board. Edge, formerly chief executive officer of Adapts Inc. in Richmond, will administer all operations. Fernandez, who has been president of DRA for the past eight years, will continue as coordinator of government projects and marketing. INDUSTRIAL, MANUFACTURING

Bendix Field Engineering Corp., the Columbia, Md., division of Allied-Signal Inc.'s aerospace operations, has promoted Paul V. Bonolis to vice president and director of employe relations. Bonolis, formerly manager of employe relations, replaces Albert H. Ford, who will retire.

Rouse & Associates, developers of office, commercial and industrial properties, has announced promotions and appointments in its Maryland offices: Lisa Harley, previously development and marketing secretary, has been promoted to property manager for corporate buildings, business parks and office centers in Howard County. Also in Howard County, Ellen Starr, formerly training management consultant for Learning International, has been named director of marketing and leasing. In the Landover office, Dennis L. Curl, previously with Gilbane Building Co., has become marketing and development manager for new projects in Anne Arundel County.

Figgie International Inc., a diversified operating company in Richmond, has appointed James R. O'Brien president of its consumer products licensing division. An attorney specializing in licensing and international law, O'Brien will oversee the licensing activities of the company's consumer product trademarks, including Rawlings Sporting Goods and Fred Perry. GOVERNMENT

Frank S. Johnson Jr., former assistant associate administrator and director of public affairs for the National Aeronautics & Space Administration, has been named assistant postmaster general for public and employe communications.

Harold J. (Hap) Pareti, president and chief executive officer of Presidential Airways, has been named a member of the Virginia Economic Advisory Council by Gov. Gerald Baliles. The group reviews and makes recommendations to the governor on economic trends and opportunities in Virginia. RETAIL, WHOLESALE TRADE

Erol's Inc., the Springfield-based video club chain, has appointed Vans Stevenson director of public relations. He was most recently the editor of the Home Satellie Newsletter, published by First Communications Group. HOTELS, FOOD SERVICES

Quality Inns International in Silver Spring has appointed Bill Todd to the post of marketing director. Former national director of sales in the southeast region, Todd will develop and direct marketing programs for the worldwide hotel network.