The events leading to the formation of the Potomac & Cheasapeake Council are written primarily from the perspective of the Washington Chapter because the writer maintains the archives for that chapter.  From that perspective, one of the key events leading to the Council formation was the spin-off of the two chapters -- Northern Virginia and Montgomery-Prince Georges -- from the Washington Chapter.

The spin-off was reported on by C. William Moore, Director-at-Large of the Washington Chapter in 1976.  Mr. Moore noted that two organizing committees had been formed.  The existence of the two new chapters was first reported at the April 1977 Washington board meeting. 

Walt Kasunik of the NAA staff attended the November 1977 board meeting.  He said that the Virginia Council had expressed an interest in having the three Washington area chapters join.  At the same time there was growing concern by the Washington Chapter board over its affiliation with the Mid-Atlantic Council.  The distance of Mid-Atlantic Council functions from the Washington are had caused problems in getting adequate chapter participation in Council activities.  The idea of holding a 1978 Chapter Management Seminar in the Washington area was put forth to William Warshauer, the National Vice President.  Bill did not favor the proposal.  After further investigation, Frank Zappacosta reported in January 1978 that a seminar would require the participation of about six chapters.  The Washington board decided that it would support the Mid-Atlantic Council seminar held in King of Prussia, PA and the Virginia Council seminar held in Richmond, VA.

In July 1979, Washington Chapter President, Frank Zappacosta reported on the difficulty of getting chapter delegates to attend Mid-Atlantic Council meetings.  A discussion of continued Mid-Atlantic membership ensued.  Apparently some of the board members favored joining the Virginia Council.  Frank Zappacosta said the issue needed to be resolved by the August 1979 board meeting -- it was resolved by approval of a motion to withdraw from membership and participation in the Mid-Atlantic Council.  With this matter resolved, formation of a new council got underway.


The Potomac & Chesapeake (P&C) Council was chartered on February 1, 1980.  Leading to that event was the expenditure of much time and effort on the part of individuals from the Baltimore, Mason-Dixon, Montgomery-Prince Georges (now Suburban Maryland), Northern Virginia (now part of Nation’s Capital) and the Washington (now Nation’s Capital) Chapters.  NAA staff members Walt Kasunic and Jack Vaccaro were also involved.

The first formal meeting of the P&C Council (the Pre-Charter meeting) was held on December 11, 1979.    Proposed bylaws were considered.  The Council name was approved as was the region covered – the District of Columbia, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia and Pennsylvania.  Frank Zappacosta announced that the Washington Chapter board had voted to donate $200 to the Council.  Frank Zappacosta and Don Mutzbaugh agreed to work on a council logo for the next meeting which was held on January 31, 1980.   

The following officers were nominated and elected at the second council meeting:

              Principal             Gilbert B. Belson, Jr (Baltimore)
              Vice Principal     Linda Harmon (Montgomery-Prince Georges)
              Secretary            William Hawkins (Washington)
              Treasurer           James W. Hockenberry (Mason Dixon)


The first mention of expansion of the Council membership occurred in October 1985.  The Delmarva Chapter had expressed an interest in the Council but had not officially asked to become a members.  Contacts and efforts to encourage Delmarva's Council membership went on for some time.   In September 1986 Delmarva officially announced its intentions to join the Council.

While gaining one new chapter, the Council unfortunately lost another.  At the March 1987 Council meeting, a contested slate of officers ultimately prompted the loss of one of our charter chapters - Northern Virginia to the Virginia Council.  Northern Virginia's vote to withdraw was not formally announced until the July 1988 Council meeting.  In accordance with the Council bylaws, the withdrawal was effective 60 days after the official notification.