By Joe Murchison

Laurel resident Tom Dernoga (District 1) was elected chair of the Prince George’s County Council on Dec. 6. It was his third one-year election as leader during his 12 years on the council. 

County law limits County Council members to two consecutive four-year terms. However, Dernoga served on the council from 2002 to 2010, then ran for a third term in 2018 after an eight-year interim. He won his fourth term as an unopposed candidate in the November election.

According to a county press release, Dernoga has created a leadership team of council committee chairs that skews toward newer council members. They include newly elected Wala Blegay (District 6) of Kettering, who was elected council vice chair; newly elected Krystal Oriadha (District 7) of Seat Pleasant; newly elected Eric Olson (District 3) of College Park (although Olson previously served two terms from 2006 to 2014); one-year councilmember Ed Burroughs (District 8) of Temple Hills (who won his seat in a special election in late 2021); and Jolene Ivey (District 5) of Cheverly, who has just begun her second term.