Closer look: Walter Clarke, the next Mount Vernon planning commissioner


Walter Clarke is a vice president for Burke & Herbert Bank, and serves as president of the Southeast Fairfax Development Corporation.

Walter Clarke has been selected to be the next Mount Vernon District planning commissioner, a key position as the Richmond Highway area is primed for a major transformation in the coming years.

A graduate of Virginia State University, Clarke is Vice President and Business Banking Officer at Burke & Herbert Bank in Alexandria. He has also previously held senior positions at Sun Trust Bank and Bank of America.

Clarke is involved in numerous community organizations, including the Southeast Fairfax Development Corporation, where he serves as president. Clarke was co-chairman of the Embark Richmond Highway Advisory Committee, and is on the board of directors for the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce. 

We caught up with Clarke for a brief email interview, where he shared his thoughts on the planning challenges the area faces and what made him apply for the job.

What area of Mount Vernon do you live in, and how long have you lived in Fairfax?

Clarke: I live in the Fort Hunt area of Mount Vernon and have lived in Fairfax/Northern Virginia area for over 25 years.

What motivated you to apply for this position?

Clarke: Having the opportunity to serve on the Embark Richmond Highway Advisory Group as co chair afforded me the opportunity to work closely with County Staff and leaders in the county like, current Planning Commissioner Earl Flanagan, County Supervisors Dan Storck and Jeff McKay. Also, my involvement as President of SFDC and working with developers and land-use attorneys have further fueled my passion to serve in a greater capacity for future orderly growth and development in the Mount Vernon District and the County.

What do you see as the biggest land-use/development challenge or challenges facing the Richmond Highway area?

Clarke: The effort to assemble lot sizes large enough for quality balanced development for the right mix of uses and attracting developers to the highway to help realize the potential of what Richmond Highway has to offer.