Commissioner Earl Flanagan - Planning Commission
A 38 year resident of Fairfax County, Commissioner Flanagan has served as President of the Riverside Estates Civic Association, President of the Mount Vernon Council of Citizens Associations; Chairman of the Council’s Transportation Committee; Board Director of the Fairfax County Federation of Citizens Associations, Committee of 100 and Southeast Fairfax Development Corporation; County member of the Woodrow Wilson Bridge Stakeholder Panel; Task Force member of the Richmond Highway Revitalization, District of Columbia Prison Replanning, Mount Vernon Area Plan Review (APR) and Fairfax County Redistricting Committee; and was named Commonwealth of Virginia Earl L. Flanagan Day honoree, December 28, 1997;
Mount Vernon District Lord Fairfax for 1999; and Mount Vernon District Citizen of the Year in 2000.
Commissioner Flanagan served a year's apprenticeship with Simon & Rettberg, Architects, in Champaign, Illinois, 5 years with the firm of Perkins and Will, Architects, in Chicago, Illinois, and 10 years as the principal architect of his own firm in Harvey, Illinois, specializing in the design of city, park, school, municipal, church, apartment and residential projects. Flanagan also served during this period as a Planning Commissioner, Building/Zoning Commissioner and finally as an elected Park District President before joining the Chicago Regional Office of HUD in 1968 as an expert on state and local building regulations.
He accepted the position of Principal Architect and Advisor on Building Codes and Codes Administration to Secretary Romney at the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in 1974. He then served as HUD advisor to the governments of China, Japan, Lebanon, Mexico; National Conference of States, National Association of Counties, National Institute of Architects, American National Standards Institute, National Science Foundation and National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS). He earned HUD’s highest award, the Certificate of Merit, for service as staff and co-author of the Secretary’s Task Force Report on Housing Costs. He helped establish and served as first Director of the Office of Affordable Housing and as Chairman of the NIBS Consultative Council and Director on NIBS Board of Directors. Flanagan has provided architectural designs for the Mount Vernon High School Little Theater, Mount Vernon Presbyterian Fellowship Hall, George Washington Park Pool, Richmond Highway revitalization and Woodrow Wilson Bridge projects.
Commissioner Flanagan earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Architectural Engineering from the University of Illinois. He is a member of the Theta Xi and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternities, attended Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and earned a Graduate Diploma in Social Psychology and Political Science.
An artillery Non-Commissioned Officer with Patton’s 3rd Army in Europe during World War II, Flanagan was awarded the Army Commendation Medal for an advance landing of the 71st Division at LeHarve, France. After combat he served in the Military Government of Germany, attended the Nurnberg War Crimes Trials and toured Europe as a member of the SHAEF GI Symphony. Commissioned an Air Force Officer during the Korean War, he served as a psychological warfare officer and airbase Commandant. He is currently serving as the Past President of 71st Infantry Division Association.
A native of the Chicago suburb of Harvey, Illinois, Commissioner Flanagan and his wife Virginia are homeowners in Riverside Estates, once a part of Mount Vernon Plantation. Sons John, Brett and daughter Julia are graduates of Mount Vernon High School and Virginia Tech. Earl is a descendant of John Flenniken (Flanagan), a drafter and signer of the 1775 Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence and first Magistrate of Charlotte, North Carolina.