President's Message

posted Mar 8, 2014, 1:22 PM by Stephen Schlacter


Dear SRA Community,

There’s something about a long, cold, snowy winter that makes the sunny, warm, lazy summer days at SRA seem ever more precious. They are coming – we will all be poolside before you know it!

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is David Fleischman and I am the new president of SRA’s Board of Directors. My wife, Susan, and I have 3 children, known as Sharks in the summer, who swim and dive at SRA, with some tennis mixed in as well.

I am happy to report that SRA continues to be a stable and thriving part of our community. Financially we are strong as well, though last year we did have a minor shortfall within SRA teams’ financial support. As a result, the SRA board, operations committee and team representatives have agreed to initiate a small increase in 2014 team fees. Much of this increase will cover the rising cost of incidentals and supplemental equipment necessary to support our teams. The Board has analyzed team fees with other local community pools, and we assure you that SRA team fees are still a bargain compared to others in our community. This small increase will grow SRA’s financial support for its teams and prevent shortfalls from happening again in the future. The old and new SRA team fee structure is as follows:

Current (2013) Team Fees: New Team Fees for 2014:

$90 one child $110 one child

$180 two children $220 two children

$225 three or more children $280 three or more children

  Our membership continues at 100% capacity with new families purchasing memberships as they become available. This stability has allowed us to begin planning the needed renovation for SRA’s community house and shower facilities; we expect to break ground in September 2014. Under the direction of the SRA board, Rob Uhrin, AIA architect and past SRA president, has volunteered his time to draft a preliminary drawing for an SRA board discussion with Fairfax County. The purpose of this discussion is to determine whether or not certain construction issues are acceptable to Fairfax County prior to entering into detailed plans and specifications. The board looks forward to sharing impending plans and specifications at a future SRA membership meeting. My intention is to be as transparent as possible on this issue and all other things related to SRA’s mission and objectives.

We had a busy winter assembling the SRA team for 2014. In January our operations committee conducted comprehensive interviews and was able to fill our guard roster and staff positions for the summer. We have a great group of guards, coaches and staff for the upcoming season, with many familiar faces returning to SRA. Once again, we have offered positions to eligible neighborhood applicants, and Mark Murray will continue to provide his seasoned leadership for us. My sincere thanks to Barry Hutchison, vice president of operations, and SRA’s operations committee: William Roberts, Leigh Mang, Kathleen Dean and Simmons Lough, for their efforts in pulling this together this year.  

SRA’s Jr. Guard program continues to allow kids to gain experience and training as young teenagers who later become eligible for lifeguard duty. My oldest daughter completed the program last year and is currently a lifeguard at SRA. I also have two other children who will be going through the same program this year and again in 2016. This Jr. Guard Program has been a tremendous success and we are seeing the rewards with hiring staff from the SRA community. As always, we are looking for volunteers: If you have time and are interested in helping us continue this valuable program, please reach out to me.  

The SRA board, operations committee and team coordinators have had a tremendously busy off-season. We are happy to report that most of our coaches are on board and ready to go. This will be an exciting year for the Sharks!

SRA’s membership continues to show wonderful volunteer support. I want to encourage additional volunteering and ask everyone this year to pitch in to help all season long at SRA. Your volunteer time is so incredibly important to our success. In addition to swim timers and dive judges, there are a limited number of specialized swimming and dive volunteer positions that need to be filled. Other volunteer positions include tennis, social events, concessions, cooks, fundraising and pre-season Clean Up Days, to name a few. Please continue to visit our website at and contact SRA’s board, operations committee or team coordinators by email to volunteer your time. Thank you so very much for your support.

Finally, I am happy to report that in 2014 the SRA board has adopted an operations budget that keeps membership dues at $575. SRA will continue to work hard at fundraising, remain dedicated to controlling costs and provide proficient stewardship of the memberships’ assets, including SRA’s cash reserves for the reconstruction of the community house and shower facilities.

I want to remind everyone that, in accordance with SRA bylaws, SRA membership dues are due on or before April 1 in order to avoid paying any late fees. SRA bylaws also specify that late fees cannot be waived. Please make your check payable to the Stratford Recreation Association. Membership dues can be mailed or hand-delivered to 8832 Camfield Drive, Alexandria VA 22308. Questions related to membership dues can be directed to our business manager, Ellen Haas, at

I sincerely look forward to meeting and working with the SRA community this year! Please remember to join us at 7:30 p.m. for SRA’s general membership meeting on Tuesday, March 25, at Stratford Landing Elementary School. Thank you so much for this opportunity to serve as SRA’s president.

Go Sharks!

David Fleischman