An investor is threatening to block Abigail Adams National Bancorp's acquisition of a Virginia bank.

Marshall Reynolds, a member of Adams' board of directors, has notified the Washington-based company that he doesn't want it to acquire $72 million-asset Ballston Bancorp. Mr. Reynolds, who leads an investor group that owns about 36% of Adams stock, said he is worried that the purchase would dilute it.

Adams' board of directors unanimously agreed in June to approve the $14 million cash-and-stock offer for Ballston, but Mr. Reynolds has apparently changed his mind. He did not return telephone calls seeking comment.

Shareholders are to meet Dec. 17 to vote on the acquisition.

Barbara Davis Blum, chairman, president and CEO, could not be reached for comment. However, she has publicly urged shareholders to approve the acquisition.

Brian Alprin, a lawyer and spokesman for Arlington-based Ballston, said he was surprised that some Adams shareholders weren't supporting the acquisition.

"I can tell you both managements are committed to making the deal happen on schedule," Mr. Alprin said. Ballston shareholders "strongly support the transaction."

An analyst questioned Mr. Marshall's opposition. "This is such a favorable merger for them I can't see how this can't go through," said Arnold Danielson, chairman of Danielson Associates Inc., Rockville, Md. "I'm really surprised anyone would consider challenging it."

The deal would give Abigail Adams, the nation's largest banking company run by women, entry into the lucrative Northern Virginia suburbs.

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