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Palisades Village is led by a highly qualified executive staff and board of directors with decades of high-level experience in a wide range of fields, who tirelessly work to help the organization fulfill its vision.


Erica Blanton, Executive Director

Erica Blanton came to Palisades Village in 2016 to coordinate programs and volunteers as well as manage the office. In her previous position, she worked with older adults as a Senior Transition Manager, sometimes helping them find more supportive housing but often making their current home work better so they could age in place. Before that she had an extensive career in advertising, marketing and communications, first with Earle Palmer Brown in Bethesda, Maryland where she advanced to the position of Vice President and Media Director, and then as a Partner and Managing Director for Harmonic International, LLC in Baltimore. She has also managed her own consulting firm. She volunteers with various local arts organizations. 

Anne Ourand, Assistant Director

Born and raised in Cleveland, Anne graduated from Xavier University before starting a career in social service work that included a stint with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, running the Emergency Services Department for a large non-profit in Great Falls, Montana and managing a child support agency in Cleveland. Anne moved to D.C. three decades ago to marry a seventh generation Washingtonian. She almost immediately started working for SOME (So Others Might Eat) coordinating the Donations Department. After five years, Anne and her husband moved to London, where Anne took a job as the assistant director of the Hackney Volunteer Bureau. Anne returned to DC four years later to start a family and take up her old job at SOME. She also agreed to join the Palisades Community Association as its administrator. She raised three children: a son who graduated from Gonzaga High School and Temple University; a daughter who graduated from Georgetown Visitation and the College of Holy Cross; and another daughter who graduated from Georgetown Visitation and now attends Villanova University. She has been married to John, a sports journalist, for 28 years. Anne has been intimately involved in the Palisades neighborhood since moving here in 1999. 


Claudia de Colstoun, President, Kent

Claudia de Colstoun is a Leadership Coach and Mediator. She has recently retired from the Inter-American Development Bank Group (IDBG) where she had an exceptional career path, cultivating a deep understanding of mediation, human resources, coaching, business operations, and corporate management. Having led the IDBG’s Human Capital Strategy, she applied extensive strategy development experience to all aspects of recruiting, talent management, HR best practices, and policy, with particular expertise in program development and implementation related to conflict management and resolution, facilitation, and negotiation. She has lived extensively in Latin America, North America, and Europe, is fluent in four languages and is a champion of cultural diversity, committed to promoting mediation and coaching to encourage discussion, solve conflict and engender progress. She holds a Leadership Coaching Certificate from Georgetown University, an M.A. in International Relations from George Washington University, a B.A. in Political Science from Middlebury College, and a French Baccalaureate Degree from the Lycée Français in Caracas, Venezuela. She has been living in the Palisades with her family since 2012.

Nephelie Andonyadis, Vice President, Palisades

With a background in arts and education, Nephelie is a theater artist, a professor and a gerontologist working at the intersection of arts, community and policy to help transform the culture of care for older adults. As a scenic and costume designer, Nephelie has worked with regional theaters across the country and around DC. She has been a tenured professor of Theater Arts at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and at the University of Redlands in Southern California.

Nephelie was born in DC and raised in Foxhall Village where she was a student at Hardy Elementary before attending and graduating from Sidwell Friends School. She holds an MFA from the Yale University School of Drama and an M.S. in Aging and Health from Georgetown University.

Nephelie focus centers in the intersectional spaces where quality of life and citizenship intersect with arts, culture and policy, working towards a broader and deeper culture of care. As a means towards empowering and enabling older adults to successfully age in place, she sees the Villages positioned in one of these intersectional spaces in support of community values and as agents of change. 

Ellen Myerberg, Treasurer

Ellen has 40 years of experience as an accountant or Director of Finance for a variety of non-profit or governmental organizations including the Montgomery Housing Opportunities Commission, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Environmental Law Institute, and the Wellness Community. Her duties during this period varied from overseeing all accounting and finance activities to responsibility for various specialized accounting activities.

She currently volunteers at Palisades Village in the office. She also volunteers with The Smithsonian Associates, Learning Ally, and the Blackwater Wildlife Refuge in Cambridge, Maryland. Ellen holds a BA from Duke University, an MPA from Cornell University, and an MBA from the University of Maryland.

Sue Bowers, Secretary

Sue is a 78-year-old retired civil rights attorney. After earning a B.A. in English from The State University of New York at Buffalo and a law degree from George Washington University, most of her professional career was as a civil rights attorney for the United States government, predominantly at The Department of Justice and The Department of Education. She was made a member of the Senior Executive Service in 1996 and was awarded the rank of Meritorious Executive by President Clinton in 2000. She finished her civil rights career as the Enforcement Director For Civil Rights at the Department of Education (directing all twelve DOE civil rights offices in the country).

Sue has lived in Washington, D.C. since 1972, and is married to a retired physician. She is the proud mother of three married children and eight grandchildren. Her volunteer work includes volunteering for several years at Palisades Village, being a volunteer substitute teacher at Ivymount School in Rockville, Maryland, predominantly working with children on the autism spectrum, and being a volunteer in-school tutor at Garfield Elementary School in Anacostia working with disadvantaged minority children. She is also a member of the Governance Committee of her 320-unit Florida condominium Board of Directors. 

Luz Benito, Palisades

Luz Benito, a native of Argentina, has lived in multiple countries in Latin America and Spain before finding home in the US. An MBA graduate from American University, she has lived in the DC area for over 40 years, and in the Wesley Heights, Palisades and Foxhall Village area for over two decades.

Professionally, she is a Principal Export Compliance Officer for Honeywell International, where she provides strategic and day-to-day advice to global supply chain functions, in the areas of regulatory due diligence, export licensing, process improvement, automation and training. Her skills include team building, problem solving, and training.

In prior professional roles, Mrs. Benito obtained extensive experience in the financial and operational management of defense/aerospace companies.

Her commitment to volunteering started at a young age for the Red Cross in Paraguay, and has been a part of her life ever since. Locally, she has volunteered for S.O.M.E., soup kitchens, HolyTrinity Church, and school related activities where her children attended.

She is married and has two children born and raised in the Palisades.

Elaine Bole, Kent

Elaine Bole spent over 15 years working in broadcast news in Washington, DC before leaving journalism for international development and human rights advocacy.

Ms. Bole has worked with refugees since 1993 during the war in the former Yugoslavia, and later in Sierra Leone, Rwanda, Uganda, the West Bank, and Iraq. She worked on humanitarian and relief issues at the United Nation’s Refugee Agency and World Vision, leading and managing a diverse array of projects, such as strategic media outreach for rapid-response disaster relief and in-field TV specials and press coverage of conflicts.

Ms. Bole developed with philanthropist Pam Omidyar a traveling interactive children's museum exhibit called Torn from Home: My Life as a Refugee, designed to provide a hands-on opportunity to experience life in a refugee camp. The exhibit opened at Lied’s Children’s Museum in Las Vegas in June 2008. The exhibit’s tour schedule was booked until March 2013. She is currently working on a multimedia project locating the refugee children she interviewed in war zones to hear about their life today as adults.

Before her humanitarian work, Ms. Bole was executive producer of Washington, DC's award-winning syndicated National Public Radio shows, The Derek McGinty Show, and Public Interest with Kojo Nnamdi.

Elaine earned a MA in Journalism and Public Affairs from American University and was a Reuters Journalism Fellow at the University of Oxford (Green College), England. She grew up in Dover, Delaware, and now resides in both Dewey Beach, Delaware, and Washington, DC. She has volunteered her time to the Town of Dewey as the Chair of the 10-year Comprehensive Plan and as a member of the Charter and Code Review Committee and oversaw the revamping of the town's website. She has served as the Election Board Chair for the Town of Dewey Beach elections since 2019. Bole also serves as the President of the Marina View Homeowner’s Association in Dewey Beach, a 46-unit, 22-million-dollar residential complex.

Tom DeMuth, Palisades

Tom is a realtor with Evers & Co. Real Estate, a Long & Foster Company. For many years, Tom served as president of a lighting design company with office locations throughout the east coast. He also worked for IBM as a financial analyst and a national account marketing representative with responsibility for a Fortune 30 company. He holds a BS in Finance and an MBA from Virginia Tech.

In addition to being a past board member and longtime volunteer with Palisades Village, Tom serves as an advisory board member with Work Opportunities Unlimited which specializes in placing job seekers who may experience barriers to employment.

Tom has lived in the DC metro area for the majority of his life and moved to the Palisades in 2008. He is married to Janet Mann, a professor at Georgetown University.

Job Dittberner, Spring Valley

Job grew up in St Paul, Minnesota, the fifth of seven children, in a family where Catholic piety, education, and music were important. His professional career began as a professor of history after gaining a PhD at Columbia University. The yen for the broader political world led him to DC, where he became a staff assistant on a special congressional committee. That led to the international secretariat of the North Atlantic Assembly in Brussels, a NATO organization, for eight years, where he was Director of Committees and Studies, then back to DC and the Atlantic Council of the United States, where he became Vice President for Programs and Projects. After funding for East-West relations changed with the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact, he became a Senior Analyst at the National Intelligence Council. 

While in Brussels, he met and married his wife Ghislaine, who at the time was the European representative of the private sector of Mauritius. Aside from some periodic consultations, she gave up her career to return with him to the US in 1985. By then they had one child and a second on the way. 

Retirement has allowed time to travel, research, reading, especially history and contemporary fiction; family history; gardening; house maintenance; a vigorous (pre-pandemic) social life; and Palisades Village.

William Iverson, Spring Valley

Bill grew up in a small village in northern New York, graduated from Penn, and then spent two years driving an aircraft carrier for the Navy. After studying law at Yale, he came to Washington in 1968 for a clerkship. Contrary to his plans, he then stayed in Washington and spent his career as a litigator, for the first few years with the DC office of a New York firm, and then for many years with a large local firm. He began phasing down his practice in 2006, and since then has spent time traveling with his wife Susan, doing a number of pilgrimage walks in Spain and Italy, working with a variety of alternative photographic processes, and doing volunteer work.

As part of the latter, he gave presentations in 2019 on new alternatives to hearing aids to the Palisades and two other Villages, as part of an HLAA program. After that he did a modest amount of volunteering at Palisades Village, mostly driving. Since the pandemic ended that, and traveling -- at least for a while -- he has been digitizing and printing photographs from the relatively immense collection of negatives and slides sitting in his darkroom since he was forced to convert to digital cameras.

Susan and he have lived on Tilden Street since they moved here from Capitol Hill in 1978. They have two daughters, one in Cambridge and one in Cleveland Park, and two young grandchildren in each place.

Charles Lanman, Foxhall

Charles B. Lanman, Jr. is a retired bank trust officer. As a local boy, he graduated from St. John’s College High School. He is a graduate of George Washington University and received a J.D. degree from George Mason Law School. He spent 34 years in the banking business after law school and was the Senior Vice President and Manager of the trust department of Burke & Herbert Bank in Alexandria, Virginia for the last 12 years of his career. He has helped organize the annual Estate Planning Seminar for Palisades Village since 2013. He is an active member of the Rotary Club of Alexandria. Mr. Lanman started volunteering for Palisades Village in 2011 and was a board member for a two-year term in 2012.

Charlie and his wife Mary have lived in Foxhall Village since 1990. They have 2 children, Michael age 31 and Claire age 28. Charlie is an avid cyclist and does a C&O Canal trip annually with other residents. He also enjoys golf and spending long weekends in Rappahannock County.

Char Mollison, Palisades

Char Mollison is an active volunteer with the Palisades Village team of volunteer chefs known as the Pan Handlers.  She is currently Senior Fellow of the Center on Nonprofits, Philanthropy and Social Enterprise and a member of the Affiliated Faculty at George Mason University. Since 1997 she has taught graduate courses in nonprofit management, and as a consultant, has advised government officials, nonprofit executives and boards in the U.S. and abroad. She is currently board chair for CAF America, part of a global network managing the international grantmaking of corporate, foundation and individual donors.


Her career began in 1977 at a national advocacy organization called WEAL where she staffed a toll-free hotline for complaints of discrimination against women in sports. Later, as WEAL’s executive director, she developed the team of volunteers and staff and raised the financial support that resulted in several new laws relating to women’s legal and economic advancement.  For the next 17 years she held senior positions at the Council on Foundations, an association of grantmakers, and at Independent Sector, a coalition of U.S.-based nonprofits and philanthropies. 


She earned her undergraduate degree at Michigan State University where she was a co-founder, editor and reporter for “The Paper,” an independent, nonprofit community newspaper (part of the underground press movement in the U.S.) covering issues ignored by the commercial press. Later she earned her master’s degree in comparative literature from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.


Her late husband was Andy Mollison, a former board chair of Palisades Village and a leader regionally and nationally in the aging-in-place movement.  Char still lives in their 1926 Sears bungalow in the Palisades.  An opera and baseball fanatic, she gives talks about opera to other fanatics and with her companion, Palisades Village member Richard Darilek, follows the minutia of the Washington Nationals baseball team.


Ellen Thrasher, Palisades

As a Senior Executive Service in the Federal government, Ellen directed entrepreneurship policies and programs for America’s small businesses. Before that, she worked in the United States Senate for 14 years. Currently, Ellen serves on the Maryland Small Business Development Centers Advisory Committee. She is completing a 6-year term on a national nonprofit board based in Boston. Now retired, she travels extensively, plays Bridge badly, and entertains friends with gusto. She has been a docent for the Palisades Village House Tour since its inception.












Email or call to set up an appointment or talk with a staff member directly. 


Palisades Village is a registered 501 (c) (3) non-profit, charitable organization. 

Full membership fees are $600 for individuals and $900 for households.  Subisdies are available for low-income members.

Associate members' annual dues are $300; which is fully tax deductible.



5200 Cathedral Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20016
(202) 244-3310


Monday-Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 


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