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Gaming Commission has new boss

September 20, 2002|by LAURA ERNDE

laurae@herald-mail.com

A retired U.S. Army colonel has been named chairman of the Washington County Gaming Commission.

Orlyn Oestereich, 75, of Boonsboro, will serve a one-year term as chairman of the commission charged with distributing millions of dollars in tip jar gambling profits to charity.

When the Washington County Club Association first asked him to serve as its representative on the commission three years ago, Oestereich agreed even though some people told him he was crazy for accepting the huge responsibility.

"If you live in a community, you have to take part. This was a way for me to get involved in the community," he said.

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It's been a difficult job at times to choose among the many worthy charities that apply for grants, he said.

It's also been rewarding, he said.

Oestereich moved to the Boonsboro area in 1988, five years after he retired after 37 years of active duty in the Army.

He belongs to the Boonsboro American Legion and serves as Western District of Maryland Commander for the organization.

He is a reading mentor at Paramount Elementary School.

Oestereich succeeds former chairwoman Deborah Murphy of Hancock, whose four-year term has expired.

Former Hagerstown City Councilman Robert Schleigh has been chosen to fill the vacancy on the seven-member commission. Schleigh was appointed by Sen. Donald F. Munson, R-Washington, said Gaming Commission Director Lisa Kalkbrenner.

The commission will begin receiving applications from nonprofits in May and will distribute the next round of grants in July, she said.

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