OF THE MANY MEN AND WOMEN who have held public office in the various governments of this metropolitan area, few have enjoyed as much respect by their counterparts around the region as Joseph S. Wholey of Arlington -- who now leaves the Arlington County Board to devote more time to his family. In addition to an impressive record as a serious local government scholar on the County Board, Mr. Wholey has served with distinction as a member of the Mtro board during some of its roughest times.

In 1970, Mr. Wholey was part of a new wave in the Arlingtonians for a Better County (ABC) group that included many government and "think-tank" executives who were willings to devote time to local public service. They initiated many changes; including zerobased budgeting and sophisticated long-range planning methods. Yet Mr. Wholey, while generally supporting the expansion of social services, remained a fiscal conservative. At Metro, as general manager Theodore Lutz says, emr. Wholey was "the man who held us together" during the last two yeats of financial troubles. He pushed for the adoption of a costrevenue formula for dividing up bus operating losses; and he led the way in cutting millions of dollars from the Metro budget through thezero-base method. The savings were used to help finance the popular evening and Saturday subway service.

Joseph Wholey's public service will be sorely missed in the county, at Metro and around the region. But certainly he has earned the break he has chosen to take, as well as the gratitude of the citizens he ahs served so well.