The Up-and-Comers

The Bethesda area is home to lots of movers and shakers with long careers in business, politics and the arts. But it also has a number of rising stars who are making their mark before they’re even 40.

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Bill Frick

37, representing District 16 in the Maryland House of Delegates

When Bethesda’s Bill Frick was chosen in 2007 to replace retiring state Delegate Marilyn Goldwater, not many people knew who he was. The political activist and attorney surprised everyone—including himself—by winning out over 10 rivals in a special process conducted by the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee.

But all that has changed in the nearly five years that the Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School graduate has served in Annapolis.

Shortly after being sworn in to represent parts of Bethesda, Chevy Chase and Potomac, Frick played a key role in a contentious General Assembly special session over a state budget crisis, served on the instrumental Ways and Means Committee and helped Majority Leader Kumar Barve defend Gov. Martin O’Malley’s legislative package on the floor.

“Within weeks, he made the kind of impact on the Legislature that would have taken most people years,” says state Delegate Brian Feldman, who represents District 15 and is House chair of the Montgomery County delegation.

Frick, a senior attorney with Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld in Washington, D.C., has maintained that momentum. He tackled credit-card reform and consumer-protection issues, and successfully sponsored legislation requiring lenders to clearly disclose the terms of tax-refund anticipation loans.

Ginanne Italiano, president of The Greater Bethesda-Chevy Chase Chamber of Commerce, says Frick has a reputation for being highly responsive to constituents, and often calls chamber members to discuss proposed legislation.

The Harvard Law School graduate is also known as a family man more likely to talk about his wife, Bethany, or his kids—Katie, 6, and Charlie, 3—than his own accomplishments. And despite Kennedy-esque good looks that led the blog Maryland Politics Watch to dub him “The Stud of the Statehouse,” Frick doesn’t take himself too seriously.

“He’s very up front and real,” Italiano says.

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