Promising to restore dignity, confidence and efficiency to "a grossly mismanaged city," Dorothy M. Maultsby, a retired federal senior management analyst and longtime civic activist announced her candidacy yesterday for mayor of the District of Columbia.

Maultsby, a 51-year-old Democrat who is chairperson of Advisory Neighborhood Commission 4B in Northeast, said she, as mayor, "will demand that all departments operate in the highest degree of efficiency and professionalism" and will "replace those who are responsible for deficiencies."

Surrounded by a group of about 50 enthusiastic supporters, mostly women, Maultsby said her background as a management analyst for the Department of Health, Education and welfare has prepared her to handle the serious budget and organizational problems that have long plagued the District government.

Announcing her candidacy at the Zeta Phi Beta House, a black women's sorority and service group, she attributed the city's management difficulties to "poor leadership" offered by Mayor Walter E. Washington and two other incumbent officials who have indicated they will challenge the mayor in this fall's Democratic primary.

"His two opponents are in top leadership positions," said Maultsby, referring to D.C. City Council Chairman Sterling Tucker and at-large Council member Marion Barry. The mayor is expected to seek his second elected term although he has not yet announced his candidacy.

Borrowing a phrase from Rep. Shirley Chisholm (D-N.Y.), Maultsby said she is "Completely unbought and unbossed" and as such "will serve the general interest of all and the special interest of none."

Maultsby, a District resident for 28 years, served several years ago as chairperson of a citizens committee that successfully opposed contruction of the proposed North-Central Freeway here. More recently, she organized a citizens group to protest rate hikes by Pepco.

A member of the executive board of Washington's NAACP, Maultsby is listed in Who's Who Among Black Americans. Prior to working for HEW she directed purchasing and space management for the United Planning Organization.

Maulsby said Washington's citizens have suffered because of the "strife, inefficiency and apparent lack of administrative dnow-how existing in the current administration."

In a news release, Maultsby said her candidacy represented the first time a women has entered the District's Democratic primary race for mayor and she described herself as the first "major" mayoral candidate who "is not currently entangled in the District of Columbia government."

Speaking to her supporters yesterday, Maultsby brought cheers when she delivered some of her political attacks in the form of an rhyme:

"Can we continue to receive the same old strokes from the same yo-yo folks Who keep slipping and sliding/running and hiding? never knowing/where they're going/rolling along/with the same old song."

She said incumbent officials were asking for "another chance" to do a better job of governing. It is a chance they don't deserve, she said.

In addition to Barry and Tucker, Maultsby joins a list of Democratic mayoral candidate that also includes attorney john L. Ry, Charles S. Cain and Richard Jackson.