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JOHN B. SCHAB Graduates from Leadership Maryland – Class of 2012

January 2013

John B. Schab, director of Aberdeen Operations, Georgia Tech Research Institute in Aberdeen recently completed an eight-month long leadership development program presented by Leadership Maryland.

Leadership Maryland, celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, honored this Bel Air resident and his statewide classmates at a black-tie reception and dinner held December 4, 2012 at the Renaissance Harborplace Hotel in Baltimore.

Leadership Maryland, an independent, educational leadership development organization, informs top level executives from the public and private sectors about the critical issues, challenges and opportunities facing the State of Maryland, and its regions.  After participating in a broad range of experiences, these statewide leaders are prepared to address these issues and serve as important participants in the unified effort to shape Maryland’s future.

“To be informed about statewide and regional issues, and having the opportunity to engage and interact with leaders who put themselves on the front line every day, has prepared these individuals to be the catalyst for positive change in Maryland,” stated Leadership Maryland Board Chairman Ralph W. Emerson, Jr.  A 2003 graduate of the program, Mr. Emerson is senior vice president of M&T Bank in Baltimore.

Classmates were impressed with Schab’s quiet strength, confidence, and critical thinking problem solving skills as a leader.  They described him as personable, observant, intelligent, open-minded, detail-orientated, and compassionate about the needs of others.

“There are no easy or absolute answers to our state’s challenges,” stated Schab.  “It was a tremendous experience to learn from my classmates and other top leaders about the complexity and interdependence of the critical challenges this state faces.  I think this program should be a prerequisite for anybody who runs for elected office.”

In his year-end program reflection essay, Schab remembered JFK’s inauguration speech where JFK called Americans to action:  “Ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country.”  In his essay, Schab argued the need for every American to fulfill his patriotic duty if we are to overcome the challenges facing us today.  He wrote, “Americans were promised a Land of Opportunity and the unalienable rights of Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.  The founding fathers instituted government to protect these rights and preserve a Land of Opportunity.  Over the generations, Americans were no longer happy to have opportunity.  They wanted entitlements, safety nets, and guarantees.  From social security to health care to food stamps to unemployment, government continues to establish these large and extremely expensive one size fits all programs in an attempt to ensure everybody not only has opportunity, but a guarantee of happiness.  As a result, a lot of Americans have grown accustomed to the idea that government is there to take care of them.  I’m not arguing these programs are inherently good or bad.  I will argue though the majority of Americans have grown complacent as a result of these programs and are consistently asking what more the government can do for them to make their lives better…Currently our government is unfortunately controlled by a few people.  It’s no longer a government for the people, by the people…If more people felt they actually had a voice in government and that their actions really mattered, people would start again focusing on the second part of JFK’s line.  The more people asking what they can do for their county/state/country, the more prosperous we will all be.  Hopefully, we elect a strong governor in two years who brings the decisions back to the people they affect the most while inspiring people to give back to their country as all Americans should be held accountable for the success or failure of this nation.”

Mr. Schab continues to work with county and state leaders on solving critical issues ranging from STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, & Mathematics) education and economic development to transportation, low-income housing and veteran hiring.  “STEM is critical for the future economic development of this region and state, and educating our students, teachers, and parents in these areas needs to remain a top priority,” stated Schab.  “We have outstanding teachers in this state, but it is imperative we continue to provide resources to them and our students.  We need more help from the science and technology businesses in the area to provide meaningful internships to students and provide subject expertise to teachers when requested.  Additionally, it’s essential to rapidly increase undergraduate and graduate program offerings in science and engineering in the region if we are going to meet the workforce development needs of the Aberdeen Proving Ground.  I’m a big supporter of the university research park idea being studied.  However, I don’t want just another university research park.  I want the nation’s premier research park that brings together the best brain power from all over the country and focuses on the problems that will keep this country safe and prosperous.”  You will find Mr. Schab backing his commitment to STEM education by teaching an introductory physics course at Cecil College this spring.

“These are the leaders to watch, now, and in the future,” said Leadership Maryland president and CEO Nancy Minieri.  “Their experience confirms that the quality of leadership affects the success of the solutions.  Problems are solved when committed, dynamic and informed leaders, with vision and passion, are willing to take the risk to lead.”

For information on Leadership Maryland, please visit our website at www.leadershipmd.org,  “Like Us” on Facebook, or call (410) 841-2101.

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