March 2023

News from the Foundation

In late January, the Foundation held its annual meeting.  After two years of online only annual meetings, it was lovely to meet in person together to celebrate the successes of the past year and chart our path going forward. The past few years have been times of growth for all of the KCF programs and we see the same for 2023.

As part of our annual meeting, an honor we have is that we recognize and give special thanks to those volunteers who have gone above and beyond to make our programs and events a success. There were four separate award categories this year.

First, volunteerism awards, recognizing an exceptional contribution of time and talents to a program, were given to the following volunteers:

  • Ida-Lina Diak, the KENTLANDS/LAKELANDS 5K Kids’ Fun Run coordinator;
  • Serrin Gant, a member of the GO GREEN GROUP; and
  • Joan Brennan, a volunteer with the VILLAGE AT KENTLANDS & LAKELANDS.

 The Arts Support Award,  recognizing individuals who have demonstrated excellence and commitment in supporting the cultural arts, were given to:

  • Ronald Thelin, chair for MUSICA VIVA KENTLANDS;
  • Margaret Polcawich, vice chair for the GAITHERSBURG ARTIST COLLECTIVE;
  • Chelsea Cedarbaum, member of the ROCK & BLUES SOCIAL CLUB;
  • Reynaldo Rojas, production manager, MUSICA VIVA KENTLANDS; and
  • Dianne Koval, production team, KENTLANDS COMMUNITY PLAYERS.

The Friend of the Foundation Award, recognizing individuals who have demonstrated a higher level of commitment and perseverance for the support or creation of a program, was awarded to:

  • Ann Derryberry, former Board member;
  • Kim Wooldridge, former Board member;
  • Frances Randolph, chair and founder of the VILLAGE AT KENTLANDS & LAKELANDS;
  • Anne Hunte, volunteer for the 5K, and KENTLANDS UNDER THE LIGHTS;
  • Chris Marsh, volunteer for the 5K, KENTLANDS UNDER THE LIGHTS, and MUSICA VIVA KENTLANDS; and
  • Marc A. Wright, in memorium, an integral part of the City of Gaithersburg’s Arts Barn team with close ties to the Foundation through the YOUNG ARTIST AWARD and the KENTLANDS FILM SOCIETY. He will be missed.

This year, the Foundation also had the lovely privilege to provide the John B. Schlichting Award to Lisa Benson Pickett.  The Schlichting award is not given every year, but rather only when a deserving individual emerges.  Lisa has been an active volunteer since 1993 when the Foundation was founded and has continued to be active through the years in a variety of programs and roles.  Her involvement with the Foundation is currently with MUSICA VIVA KENTLANDS

Congratulations to all of our awardees. This list demonstrates the breath of our programming and the dedication of our volunteers. 

We also wanted to share that as part of our plans for 2023 and in order to better support our programs, the Board has decided to add an additional position and is hiring a part-time associate director

We are looking forward to all the spring activities in the planning, please go to our website to find out more.  A few highlights include on March 12, the KENTLANDS FILM SOCIETY presents Shoplifters. The film will be shown at the Gaithersburg Arts Barn at 7:00PM. Doors open at 6:15. Additional details can be found in the Film Society’s page.  Also, planning is underway for the MUSICA VIVA KENTLANDS fundraiser on May 12 at the Arts Barn. Tickets will go on sale shortly.  Your support is important to keep the September concert free to attend.

To find out how you can volunteer or just more about the Foundation’s programs, please be sure to visit our website at