Optelecom-NKF, a Germantown company that develops fiber-optic communications systems, was the target of an extortion attempt, according to the NASD. The securities industry's main self-regulatory body charged that Shawn Aaron, a stockbroker with a Tampa firm, threatened to drive down Optelecom's stock price unless it provided him with inside information. In a statement, Aaron's attorney, Liam O'Brien, said: "Shawn intends to vigorously defend himself against the unsubstantiated allegations contained in the NASD's press release and is confident that he will prevail at a hearing on the merits."

Sodexho of Gaithersburg, a provider of food and facilities management, named Michael Norris group president of its Corporate Services and Vending divisions. Norris is a former president of Lowes Cineplex Entertainment U.S.

Biosynexus of Gaithersburg, a biotechnology company, has been purchased by QVT Fund LP of New York on terms that were not disclosed.

Brabeion of McLean formed an alliance with PricewaterhouseCoopers to incorporate the accounting firm's information technology risk and security content in the software company's Web-based management tool.

James J. Sandman of Arnold & Porter was voted president-elect of the District of Columbia Bar. He will take office on June 23, after president-elect John C. Cruden moves up to president. Meanwhile, William P. Atkins of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman was installed as president of the separate, voluntary Bar Association of the District of Columbia.