Nonprofit Spotlight

Nonprofit Spotlight

 St. Mary’s County Community Development Corporation 

Creating a bright future for a significant but older community


During the age of COVID, everyone knows that CDC refers to the Centers for Disease Control but it also stands for Community Development Corporation in Lexington Park.

St. Mary’s CDC seeks to revitalize communities in a number of ways. Public art is a favorite. Strolling along S. Shangri-La Drive you’ll see the Lexington Park Now! mural featuring the Thomas Johnson Bridge, a soaring F-18 Navy jet, and staples of Southern Maryland: seagulls, waterways, and farm fields. At the other end of the same Bank Square Building (next to the alley shared with the brand-new furniture stores on Great Mills Road) is CDC’s second major mural "Artists Come in All Colors."


The CDC is currently working with the NAACP and again with St. Mary’s County Arts Council on a future public art installation in Lexington Park. The corporation is actively seeking walls for new murals.

In addition to public art, St. Mary’s CDC developed and helps operate Patuxent Cove, a 68-unit affordable apartment complex on Peggs Road with a rental preference for veterans. Phase II is slated to begin construction in 2022. The apartments opened last spring and filled within months.

The St. Mary’s County Community Development Corporation, CDC for short, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization formed in 1985 to focus on community development throughout the county but particularly within the boundaries of the Lexington Park Revitalization District. Lexington Park is the county’s largest commercial district and suffers from blight conditions today. The corporation supports HB0655 which would provide Lexington Park with a more direct vote for their county commissioner.

SMC CDC mural

The Park’s history is inextricably linked with the Patuxent River Naval Air Station which opened at the height of World War II. With support from the Southern Maryland Heritage Area Consortium, the CDC developed a three-panel history of two of the Navy’s major housing subdivisions built in the 1940s, Lexington Manor, aka The Flattops, and Carver Heights. The full presentation premiered at the Patuxent River Naval Air Museum and will continue touring when pandemic conditions permit.

"New stores, a new sheriff’s department, and entire neighborhood facelifts are going on in Lexington Park now," said Viki Volk, CEO and president of St. Mary’s CDC. "The Navy and state are working on improved interface with the community outside the fence. There’s interest in a YMCA, which we support. It looks like a good time to invest along Great Mills Road again. It’s already the best international food way in Southern Maryland."

Volk studied and worked in urban development in Denver before moving to St. Mary’s County and becoming a land use reporter for the newspaper, The Enterprise. She won numerous awards for her stories on Lexington Park initiatives including from the Maryland Office of Planning.

"Lexington Park was the perfect reporter town. It had a rambunctious history, stuffed with aviators, and has left behind numerous international restaurants still the widest array of locally owned eateries around. And now an independent coffee shop. Lexington Park is still cool. It’s got art. It’s got that same edgy reputation of those wild first aviators. But people are surprised what they find when they visit. Come visit and see for yourself," said Volk.

For more, visit the St. Mary’s County Community Development Corporation website and follow the LexPark Arts Park Facebook page. 

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Nonprofit Institute
College of Southern Maryland
PO Box 910
La Plata, MD 20646-0910

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