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Rob Mandle


Since 2007, Rob has played a leading role in the successful transformation of Crystal City into a vibrant downtown community that is attracting residents, new businesses, and a wave of new investment by the private sector. Rob’s focus on the implementation of placemaking programming and strategic marketing initiatives combined with coordination efforts with the County to move towards more business-friendly regulatory policies, land-use planning, and public infrastructure investment has contributed to the creation of a climate for successful economic development efforts. Rob’s background in urban planning and economics combined with his passion for placemaking and collaboratively building communities for people, not just buildings, drives his perspective and vision.

Outside of Crystal City, Rob has repeatedly demonstrated a knack for quickly learning what makes neighborhoods tick and developing a vision for community action that embraces creativity, efficiency, and partnership building in order to proactively make change, not just advocate for it. In his two years in Norfolk, Virginia, Rob founded a Civic Association and led the reengagement of a prominent downtown professional group’s membership. Upon moving to the Petworth neighborhood in the District of Columbia, Rob launched a farmers market, led numerous community enhancement efforts, co-founded a community-based volunteer organization, and was elected to the Advisory Neighborhood Commission. As an engaged citizen and ANC Commissioner, Rob moved forward new bicycle lanes and traffic calming measures, supported community organizations, and advocated for economic development efforts along Georgia Avenue.

Rob earned a graduate degree in Urban and Regional Planning at Virginia Tech’s regional campus in Old Town Alexandria. Specializing in Physical Planning and Community Design, Rob focused on how the relationship between the built environment and public space defined the public realm and an area’s sense of place and identity. Rob is also a graduate of Bowdoin College of Brunswick, Maine having earned a degree in Economics and Environmental Studies. Rob resides with his family in the Petworth neighborhood of Washington, DC.

Community Involvement

  • Member of Arlington County's Residential Parking Study Working Group - August 2016 to November 2017
  • Member of the Long Bridge Park Advisory Committee - April 2015 to Present
  • Citizens Advisory Committee to Transportation Planning Board – DC Alternate & DC Member – February 2011 to February 2013
  • Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner – 4C10 – January 2011 to January 2013
  • Member of the Crystal City Citizens Review Council - December 2010 to Present
  • Petworth Community Market – Founder/Board of Directors – June 2010 to February 2013
  • Synetic Theater – Board of Directors – 2009 to September 2011
  • Downtown Norfolk Civic League – Founder/Board of Directors - 2006


  • Recognized by the Leadership Center for Excellence 40 Under 40 (2016)
  • Member of District of Columbia Mayor-Elect Muriel Bowser’s Transition Committee (11/2014 – 1/2015)
  • Center for Creative Leadership’s Maximizing Your Leadership Potential (2014)
  • Recognized as one of Bisnow’s 35 Under 35 in Washington Commercial Real Estate (2013)
  • Leadership Greater Washington’s Effective Leadership Institute (6/2012)
  • Metropolitan Washington Council of Government’s Community Leadership Institute (4/2011)
  • Leadership Arlington (Class of 2010)
  • Rensselaer at Hartford’s Foundations of Leadership Program (3/2009)
  • Greater Washington Board of Trade’s Executive Networks Program (Class of 2009)
  • Urban Land Institute (ULI) Young Leaders Mentorship Program (2008)
  • Member of the Downtown Norfolk Council’s Downtown 100 (1/2006 – 2/2007)
  • Facilitator for ULI Washington’s Reality Check on Growth (2/2005)