The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority operates under the direction of a seven-member board (officially the Commission), which is comprised of business people appointed by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. This board ensures that the business community is well represented in the policymaking functions of the FCEDA. The board meets monthly, usually the second Monday of the month, at FCEDA headquarters in Tysons.
The FCEDA Board
Catherine Lange, Chairman
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors appointed Catherine Lange to the FCEDA Board in November 2009. Ms. Lange was elected chair in January 2017. She is a partner with Human Capital Advisors, a strategic human capital consulting firm. Previously she was the founder, president and CEO of BusinessWorks of America, Inc., a management consulting and leadership development firm formed in 1995. Ms. Lange has more than 35 years of business experience, with more than 20 years at two Fortune 500 technology companies – Digital Equipment Corporation and Burroughs Corporation (now Unisys) – followed by nearly 15 years as a small business owner.
Ms. Lange serves on a number of business and non-profit boards. She serves as a board member of the Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce Committee, and she also founded the chamber’s Women’s Business Council. As chairman of the board for Fairfax Futures, she guides a non-profit dedicated to preparing pre-kindergarten children for educational success.
Ms. Lange is an alumnus of the Community Foundation for Northern Virginia board, and she is a member of the 2011 class of Washington Business Journal Women Who Mean Business. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University, and has lived in Fairfax County for nearly 40 years.
James Quigley, Vice Chairman
James Quigley has served on the board since June 2016. Mr. Quigley is the co-founder and COO of GoCanvas, a Fairfax County-based mobile technology company and creator of cloud-based software. He also is co-founder and partner of Refraction, a creative co-working community in Reston.
Mr. Quigley has a history of building wireless companies, having served as vice president and managing director at inCode Wireless (acquired by VeriSign) and performing significant roles at Aether Systems, Orbcomm and Peak Technologies. In 2007, his team designed and delivered a mobile solution used to track deadly global pandemics, an application ultimately honored with the Motorola Wireless Solution of the Year Award.
Mr. Quigley also received the Information Week Business Innovation “IT Hero” award (2016), has been named a “Top 50” CEO by the Center for Innovative Technology and has been recognized as one of the top 20 global executives in his field by CLO Magazine. He serves on the board of the Washington West Film Festival and LetsGiveBack.org. He is a former U.S. Naval Reserve officer and holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering from the United States Merchant Marine Academy.
Ronald C. Johnson, Secretary
The Fairfax County Board of Supervisors appointed Ronald Johnson to the FCEDA Commission in November 2001. He currently serves as secretary of the Commission, and chairman of the Diversity and Small Business Committee. He is chairman and CEO of Solutions4Change, LLC, an advisory and strategic planning firm in the utility and communication industries. Previously, he founded and operated businesses that provided engineering, logistics and infrastructure services for telecommunication companies.
Dr. Johnson is a past rector and member of the Board of Visitors at Virginia State University, and board member and past president of the university’s foundation. He has served five governors of Virginia in other appointed positions that include vice chairman of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, member of Virginia Highway Transportation Advisory Board, co-chair of the Governor’s Alliance for a Drug-Free Virginia, and Virginia’s citizen representative on the six-state Southern Technology Council. Currently, he is serving his third appointment to the Federal Communication Commission Advisory Committee on Diversity, and chairs and serves on the board of various other non-profit and religious organizations.
Christian Deschauer, Treasurer and Assistant Secretary
Christian Deschauer was elected to the FCEDA board in June 2016. Mr. Deschauer is director of pubic affairs and innovation at Transurban, an Australian company that manages and develops urban toll-road networks in Australia and North America. Transurban’s North American headquarters is in Tysons, and he is responsible for the company’s government affairs program in North America.
His previous role was at the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce, where he led government relations for the largest chamber of commerce in Northern Virginia. Prior to joining the chamber, he served as a senior legislative aide to Fairfax County Supervisor Pat Herrity (Springfield District) and was also a staffer to former U.S. Rep. Tom Davis (11th District, Virginia). He has a master’s degree in international commerce and policy from George Mason University and a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Penn State University.
Linnie Haynesworth was appointed to the FCEDA Commission in July 2016. She is sector vice president and general manager of Cyber and Intelligence Mission Solutions for Northrop Grumman Mission Systems, with executive responsibility for the overall growth and program activities within the division’s business portfolio.
Ms. Haynesworth has held numerous business development, functional and program positions of increasing responsibility in multiple sectors at Northrop Grumman, which is based in Merrifield. She has served as vice president and general manager within the Information Systems sector, vice president for aerospace products within the Aerospace Systems sector and vice president and program manager of that sector’s Defense Weather Satellite System.
With a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Southern California, she has extensive government, commercial and international partnership experience.
Roderick (Rocky) Mitchell
Roderick (Rocky) Mitchell was appointed to the FCEDA board in June 2016. Mr. Mitchell is executive vice president, global fixed assets, for Pentagon Federal Credit Union (PenFed). He is responsible for real estate strategy and acquisition to meet business unit requirements for PenFed and its affiliates. He previously served as CFO, COO and chief administrative officer of PenFed, which is based in Tysons.
Mr. Mitchell was the founding CEO of the Pentagon Federal Credit Union Foundation, which is dedicated to promoting financial literacy and the well-being of soldiers and their families, especially those wounded in Afghanistan and Iraq. Prior to joining PenFed, Mr. Mitchell was president and CEO of the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation in New York, one of the nation’s largest community development corporations.
Mr. Mitchell obtained his bachelor’s degree in economics from University of California, Los Angeles, and an MBA in finance from Columbia University. He is a 1999 Ellis Island Medal of Honor recipient and is on the board of directors of the Armed Forces YMCA, National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, and the National Coast Guard Auxiliary.
Steven Partridge was appointed to the FCEDA board in July 2019. He is vice president of strategic partnerships and workforce innovation at Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA), leading collaboration between the College and the community. He manages the College’s corporate and workforce engagement, government relations, marketing, communication, and workforce programming and events.
NOVA’s Workforce division has implemented labor market-intelligence capabilities, led the Tech Talent Pipeline Initiative, launched a first-ever apprenticeship program with employers including Amazon Web Services, and built employer relationships to address regional talent demands.
Mr. Partridge has testified before Congress and the U.S. Senate regarding the national skills gap and regularly consults with congressional and Administration staff on workforce issues.
Prior to joining NOVA in 2016, Mr. Partridge served as president and CEO of Charlotte Works, the workforce development board for Charlotte and Mecklenburg County, N.C. He also held executive positions at the Charlotte (N.C.) Chamber of Commerce and the Arizona Department of Commerce.
He holds a master’s degree in public administration from Arizona State University and a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from the University of Arizona.