A shared vision, a common passion and a collaborative attitude – these are the driving forces behind three women who direct three of the region’s most influential business groups. They are positioning their organizations as catalysts for a region that offers a robust, competitive business environment and is recognized globally as a world-class market and […]
Protecting Business Interests
There is much debate over the value of entry-level core classes at the undergraduate college level. Some in higher education see these courses as a foundation for one’s academic experience and an integral element in crafting a well rounded experience, while some students may see them as unnecessary and a waste of time, especially for […]
Creating More Than Just Products
The Foundery 101 W. Dickman St. Baltimore, MD 21230 www.foundery.com email@example.com 1-855-WEMAKERS Industrial-grade maker space featuring metal, woodworking, prototyping, finishing, CNC tools, blacksmithing, textiles and bench tools. Hours: Tues-Fri, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sat-Sun, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mon, 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monthly membership fee: $150; Class fees, $25-$100; Day pass, […]
Bel Air – An Emerging Renaissance
The Town of Bel Air is preparing to create a “new urbanism” combining arts, culture and nightlife with existing business and government, in response to a comprehensive market study that identified growth opportunities for the town. The study, initiated by the Bel Air Downtown Alliance, was the first step in an effort to create a […]
Mid-level business leaders aiming to advance in their careers are turning to a new program first offered by the Loyola University Sellinger School of Business & Management this fall. Executive Education, designed for middle-level managers with eight or more years of experience who seek to advance to director or higher level general management positions, is […]
A Lifelong Passion
For most Americans, preparing your annual federal and state income tax returns does not rank high on a list of favorite things to do. The arduous, time-consuming process is not always pleasant, especially if you have to include a check for taxes owed. Luckily, for most of us, taxes are a once a year task, […]
Success in the Digital World
For many businesses, regardless of their size or what industry they’re in, tackling the digital world can be overwhelming. Developing a digital marketing strategy, deciding which social media platforms to engage in, designing and maintaining a useful website, and tapping into various content marketing opportunities – blogs, podcasts, white papers, video, etc. – can be […]
A Quest for Entrepreneurship
It’s not Silicon Valley, but walking into the office of Baltimore-based entreQuest, headquartered in a century-old, restored, former soap factory known as Fells Point’s Broom Corn Building, the open-office concept draws focus. Everyone works in one, airy room. No walls. No partitions. No low dividers. Sunlight streams in for 25 employees to enjoy through windows […]
Eyeing The Next Generation
On July 17, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Farm Loan Act to increase the availability of credit to farming families by establishing 12 Federal Land Banks and the Farm Credit System. And as Farm Credit co-operatives celebrate the 100th anniversary of this historical moment, MidAtlantic Farm Credit is looking forward to a new […]
A New Vision
Picture a sun-drenched, workday in downtown Baltimore. High in the sky, on the 22nd floor of Harborplace Office Tower, banking executives at Branch Banking and Trust Company (BB&T) gather in a corner office. Here, well-seasoned professionals comprise a new leadership team for BB&T’s Maryland region. The view of the Inner Harbor is stellar as is […]
1st Mariner: Exceeding Expectations
Much has changed at 1st Mariner Bank over the last two years when a group of investors, led by 1st Mariner Chairman and CEO Jack Steil and President and Chief Operating Officer Robert Kunisch, acquired the bank. Through strategic changes, the bank has found itself in a much improved position to help its customers reach […]
Seeing Green Early On
As an undergraduate engineering student at University of Pennsylvania, Robert L. Wallace, now president and founder of Baltimore-based Bithenergy Inc., gravitated to solar and wind energy in particular.“Green by design … it’s in my spirit,” he says. Wallace’s company, Bithenergy (www.bithenergy.com), earned top honors in “Fortune Magazine’s” 2015 Inner City 100 List as the No. […]
Former U.S. Speaker of the House Tip O’Neill is credited with introducing the phrase, “All politics is local,” into the lexicon of American politics, emphasizing that the success of politicians is directly tied to their understanding of the needs of the constituents they represent. The same can be said for business – if a business […]
Expert Care in the Community
For any cancer patient, a support group of loved ones is vital to your emotional, mental and physical well-being. Whether it’s family members, close friends, neighbors, co-workers or members of your church, being able to lean on someone else for support and encouragement is extremely important and can aid in your recovery. Equally important […]
Baltimore’s International Legal Star
Sheela Murthy combined a passion for the law with a visionary use of the Internet in its earliest days to build a thriving practice that has grown into a global leader in U.S. immigration law. Her website has been ranked the most visited legal website in the world. Her firm, which began as a solo […]
In the lifespan of every small business, there is a pivotal moment that may make or break the company’s future, and savvy entrepreneurs recognize these moments and make shrewd, calculated business moves in order to thrive. When Wanda Smith, CEO and President of Symphony Placements (www.symphonyplacements.com), a full service flexible staffing and human resource solutions […]
Impacting Lives Together
Most Americans are aware of the charitable endeavors of philanthropic titans such as Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, two business leaders who have made charitable giving a priority in their lives. And while these deeds by the super wealthy have had an amazing impact around the globe, it’s safe to say that most business people […]
Training for Success
If you are an executive, you want your employees to be the best they can be at their jobs, right? And, you are willing to provide them with any resource – within reason – to help them succeed, as you recognize that not only are happy employees more productive, but if they have new skill […]
Excitement on Main Street
Be a part of it! It’s an invitation many can’t resist – the chance to have a hand in creating a vibrant community coupled with a robust business landscape. It doesn’t happen if people just sit back and watch. No one knows that better than the Bel Air Downtown Alliance. Celebrating its 15th anniversary in […]
New Leadership, New Vision
It hasn’t been quite a year yet that Jesse Bane was announced as Bel Air’s Town Administrator. He needed little introduction, however. Bane served two back-to-back terms as Sheriff of Harford County, ending his service at the county level in 2014. A resident of Harford County since 1954, he is a graduate of Bel Air […]
Jim Butcher, renowned artist, was commissioned by the Harford County Chamber of Commerce to create a limited edition print, featuring Harford County images and landmarks of historical or community significance, titled “Harford County Landmarks.” The highly anticipated unveiling was held at the Chamber’s November luncheon to a large and enthusiastic crowd. Butcher presented his original […]
Anyone who runs a business – whether it’ s a sole proprietorship, medium-sized business or large corporation – recognizes that a large amount of time is spent on tasks outside of your core industry type. Updating social media channels, marketing services and promoting strategic components of your company are all necessary to be successful, yet […]
Havre de Grace’s New Leadership
Bill Martin started his term as Mayor of Havre de Grace with a total of 24 months to accomplish a seemingly 24-page long list of goals. If his remaining 21 months in office are any indicator, chances are good he’ ll do just that. One of the youngest Mayors to lead the City by the Bay, Martin isn’ t content with the status quo. He set out to shake things up and from day one began implementing strategies on short-term and long-range goals designed to have immediate and far-reaching results.
Harford County Business Appreciation Week 2015
“Every day should be Business Appreciation Day,” says Karen Holt, Director of Economic Development for Harford County. It’ s a daily practice in the Office of Economic Development, but Sept. 21-25 offered a particularly high-energy marathon of several spotlight events and 70 company visitations intended to showcase Harford County’ s economic diversity as part of […]
An Economic Boom
Visitors enjoy it. Businesses fuel it. Residents live it. Havre de Grace is coming into its own as both a tourist destination and a thriving city that is truly a great place to live, work, stay and play. The coordination of business-friendly programs, strategic residential planning and inherent tourist attractions is no coincidence. It is […]
Approaching Business With Tenacity
“Do you know what Tenax means?” asks Tamera Rush, president and CEO of Tenax Technologies. “Tenacious!” She answers her own question as she describes the traits that she believes contribute to her success. In addition, she lists perseverance, being fearless, having a sense of humor, and being“a little crazy. Life is so good,” she […]
Delivering on Promises
I moved to Baltimore from South Carolina in 1996 on the eve of NCAA Basketball’s “March Madness” tournament. In an unfamiliar city that I had only visited twice prior to my move, I luckily found a great, intimate bar in which to watch basketball while enjoying a cold beer and hopefully meet some new friends – The Greene Turtle in Fell’s Point. A lot has changed since then, that’s for sure.
Franchising Advice from Local Executives
Franchising is an appealing business option for those who want to be their own boss, yet have a support system in place and have certain elements, such as marketing, logo creation, etc., handled at the corporate level. For those who are interested in buying a franchise or simply readers who are intrigued by how franchises impact the local economy, we enlisted three well-known, successful business leaders involved in the industry to offer their insight on this burgeoning industry.
Embracing Change to Succeed
In the tumultuous world of commercial development, change is definitely inevitable – tenants come and go, what the public wants fluctuates with trends and lifestyle changes, and local and national economic ebbs and flows all can have a dramatic effect on whether a retail shopping center succeeds or not. However, in order to not only succeed – but also thrive – a developer must be proactive in order for a property to evolve and become an economic generator.
According to the 2014 Report on “US Sustainable, Responsible and Impact Investing Trends” from the US SIF Foundation, assets managed under sustainable, responsible and impact investing (SRI) strategies in the United States grew by 76 percent from 2012 to the beginning of 2014, when $6.57 trillion was invested in companies or products seeking to achieve positive impacts on society. That’s one in every six dollars professionally managed in the United States.
The New Face of Health Care
Health care is constantly changing – and for good reason. Technological advances, new discoveries in disease treatment, cutting edge, game-changing research, and institutional changes as a result of the Affordable Care Act all keep hospitals in a state of continuous change. Two innovative physicians at University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Medical Center (UM UCMC), who represent the fresh face of health care embrace, even welcome, these ongoing changes and look to change health care for the better for their patients and the community as a whole.
David Kuraguntla talks about his start-up company’s idea germinating literally “from a drawing on a napkin.” That was in late 2012, and in the past three years, Kuraguntla and his partners, Robert Rushenberg and Samit Gupta, have developed the idea and the company known in the medical device market as GraftWorx. The company’s innovative product marries “smart” technology with the life-saving medical treatment of a peripheral bypass graft or stent. “The product is the first foray into the internet of the body,” Kuraguntla says.
Driven to Serve
After a storied career in government service, Mary Chance was definitely prepared when the perfect career opportunity came her way. Chance spent 28 years working for Harford County government, the last four years as Director of Administration for County Executive David Craig. She was clear in that when Craig’s tenure ended at the end of 2014 that she would not stay on, yet knew that retirement was not right for her. “It’s always been the choice of the County Executive who would occupy that No. 2 spot – your right hand.
Banking on Relationships
Their business cards may read, “CEO” or “Vice President,” but in reality, they are relationship builders. The sentiment is echoed again and again in nearly the same language and definitely the same passionate tone: “We do everything to help our clients, because at the end of the day, they are people just like we are,” says Rose Ann Lambert, president/CEO at Freedom Federal Credit Union.
Placing Relationships Over Numbers
Knowing whom to trust is one of life’s great challenges, especially when it’s about trusting someone with your financial well-being. The Kelly Group understands that “trust” is something that must be earned, every day with every client. When addressing their clients’ needs – including investment choices, critical retirement decisions and estate planning – the firm’s advisors understand they are among the most important people in their clients’ lives. And they act accordingly.
The Stock Exchange of Automobiles
On any given Thursday, the grounds of BSC America – better known as the Bel Air Auto Auction – swarm with automobile dealers buying and selling used cars. Belair Road becomes the Wall Street of automobiles, as the opening bell signals that bidding can begin at this vehicle stock exchange. “We are a true intermediary,” says Charles Nichols, president of BSC America and second-generation of the family-owned and operated business. “We have developed trust and confidence. Trust has to be felt between the buyer and seller, and we become the exchange for these two,” he explains.
The Young Guns of Chesapeake Testing
When many people think of a laboratory, they think of high school chemistry class, mixing chemicals and using basic equipment like thermometers, beakers and Bunsen burners. What may not immediately come to mind are ballistic testing, outdoor blast, environmental conditioning and body armor testing.
Leadership During Transition
Major General Bruce T. Crawford assumed senior mission commander and commanding general of CECOM (U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command) in May. His appointment comes at a time of great change in the Army’s active engagement worldwide, assuming the effects of sequestration and budget reductions to Department of Defense funding, and real time changes in the methods of warfare. CECOM is at the center of the post-war transition, responsible for maintaining the Army’s C4ISR weapon systems readiness, developing logistics and supporting the warfighter, even as the U.S. Army reduces uniforms system-wide while escalating a military presence in the Middle East.
Building on a Solid Foundation
There’s a lot of buzz about Downtown Bel Air these days and with good reason. Over the past few years, popular Baltimore City restaurants and pubs have either relocated or opened outposts in Bel Air including Sean Bolan’s Irish Pub, Looney’s Pub and MaGerk’s Pub & Grille – joined by upscale eateries such as Main Street Oyster House, The Orient and Savona Fine Italian Foods. As a result, Bel Air’s Main Street has been revitalized with new shops ranging from a bridal boutique to a comic book store opening.
Loving Life Downtown
The brilliant writer Thomas Wolfe penned a novel that was published posthumously in 1940 titled “You Can’t Go Home Again.” Well, don’t tell that to Erika (Quesenbery) Sturgill, executive director of the Bel Air Downtown Alliance.
On any given spring or summer weekend, Harford County welcomes 15,000 to 40,000 visitors. They are families drawn by baseball, lacrosse and soccer tournaments, and the opportunity for young athletes to be “seen” by coaches from colleges and universities from all over the country. Unknown to most residents, sports tourism is a hidden economic jewel in Harford County, and the potential impact is just beginning to be discovered.
Main Street Soon to Welcome Bel Air Armory Marketplace
In 2015, the Bel Air Armory will celebrate its 100th Anniversary with yet another innovation – Bel Air Armory Marketplace. This project is part of the amazing transformation of the property from a National Guard facility to a regional community center, providing a visitors center, meeting rooms, the Economic Development Department and Downtown Alliance offices, recreational and auditorium space for individual groups, and events like the annual Chocolate Festival, the Festival of Trees, the Bel Air Gun Show, concerts, plays, dances, receptions and more.
In Their Natural Habitat
Companies large and small, and in just about every industry, make a concerted effort to advertise and market their environmental awareness and ecological measures in the workplace in an effort to “go green.” For some, it’s simply a matter of contributing to the well being of our planet, while others have realized actual business savings in areas such as energy usage, selling recycled materials, etc. Harford County-based Ecotone, Inc., an ecological restoration design-build firm, however, has created a niche business plan that allows it to offer clients a wide range of services – everything from construction to design, restoration, conservation easement purchases, mitigation and more – while improving and preserving Maryland’s natural landscape.
Harford’s Healthy Heart
March 17, 11pm – Michael Drossner, M.D., director of the cardiac catheterization lab at the University of Maryland Upper Chesapeake Medical Center (UM UCMC), heads to the hospital after being notified that a Harford County woman has had a heart attack.
March 18, following morning – Three additional patients are treated by Dr. Drossner and his team with serious heart issues ranging from significant blockage in coronary arteries to excessive fluid around the heart.
A Move to the Mat
Parkinson’s disease is a frustrating, terrifying and devastating disease. It’s a gradual degenerative disease, there is no cure and it can be extremely difficult to correctly diagnosis, even for the most skilled physician.
Women’s Work: Financial Planning
Passion. Determination. Awareness.
These are shared characteristics of three local women making their mark in the financial services industry. From three different firms and walks of life, Jodi Davis, Andrea Kirk and Stephanie Cassedy exude enthusiasm and passion for the business. Those qualities, along with their smart money strategies, are a big part of what makes them successful. Each joined the ranks of financial advisors at different points in their careers, each for different reasons, but all have flourished in an industry still dominated by men on both sides of the table.
Building a Road to Success
Businesses that are able to secure government contracts – whether on the local, state or federal level – can see their yearly profits grow exponentially. The procurement of these contracts also allows businesses to expand their staff and invest in durable goods, thanks to the safety net of reliable payment by the government. The general public, however, has little or no say on which businesses receive these contracts, nor is it able to weigh in on how the money will be spent or typically see tangible results from the citizenry’s tax dollars at work.
Harford County’s higher education center has undergone a name change; however, Director Nancy J. Spence explains that bigger changes are in store.
Victims of AccuPay on What Happened and How to Protect Your Business
Brigadier Genera (Ret.) Dean R. Ertwine: The One Who Stayed
Military Assignments Field Artillery, Company-Grade Positions, Neu Ulm, Germany Gunnery Instructor and Battery Commander, Fort Sill, Okla. Director of Materiel Testing, Dugway Proving Ground, Utah Assistant Professor of Chemistry, United States Military Academy, West Point, N.Y. Commander of the U.S. Army Cold Regions Test Center at Fort Greely, Alaska Assistant Division Chemical Officer, Deputy G3, […]
Building on a Vision: An Update on the University Research Park
The Northeastern Maryland University Research Park Corporation, initiated in 2009 and officially chartered as a 501(c)(3) non-profit in 2011, continues moving forward trying to create a symbiotic and sustainable region where the best minds and labs in the country can work, live and learn. President B. Daniel “Danny” DeMarinis leads the charge in laying the […]
Everything from simple documents and media entertainment to municipal operations and national security is being digitized and becoming highly susceptible to hackers and thieves. Digitization is the process by which an object, sound, image, document or signal is converted from its physical state into a digital state. The resulting digital files travel the Internet or […]
When I graduated high school 25 years ago, I went off to the University of Georgia for journalism school, while a few of my best friends went to Clemson University to study engineering. And even when they would tell me what their specialization was – mechanical, civil, chemical – I have to admit I really […]
Vision Becomes Reality
It may be fitting that attorney Robert Schulman’s office is located in the World Trade Center building in Baltimore. The building – the tallest, regular pentagonal structure in the world – was designed to appear to be rising out of the harbor from select vantage points and welcome visitors to Baltimore’s famed Inner Harbor. Similarly, […]
FIELD OF DREAMS
Don’t let the name fool you. There is a lot more to The Arena Club than an indoor sports arena and field. With an emphasis on health and wellness for all ages, owners – and husband and wife – Keith and Kathy Rawlings have built a state-of-the art exercise gym, group fitness and yoga studio, […]
5 In Charge–Harford County Leaders
Coordinating the schedules of five active directors from the Harford County government and scheduling them into one room without a declaration from the County Executive is not an easy feat. But, with the help of Carole Boniface in the Office of Community Services, I95 BUSINESS was able to do just that. With little more than […]
Building Business in Bel Air
The Christmas and July 4th parades. The Film Festival. The Armory refurbishment. The parking garage. Each of these additions to the cultural, community and economic landscape were made possible by the vision and support of the Economic and Community Development Commission of Bel Air. Established in 1974, the Bel Air Economic and Community Development Commission […]
Protecting & Growing Your Business
There’s a corny joke that circulates in many offices: “What is the definition of an accountant? Someone who solves a problem you did not know you had in a way you don’t understand.” Benny Walker would take exception to that. Walker, a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) with an MBA, is […]
Advocate for Employers and Employees
Carrie Shapiro, Innovative Insurance Solutions You’re not going to use any of that personal stuff we talked about, are you?” That’s what Carrie Shapiro, a petite dynamo of a woman asked a few days after talking with I95 BUSINESS, when confirming receipt of an email containing copies of PowerPoint presentations (not the point and snooze […]
95 Years of Innovation and Discovery
World War I saw the introduction of chemical agents on the battlefields in Europe. In 1915, the German Army released chlorine gas on French Terri-torial and Colonial forces in Ypres, Belgium killing and maiming thousands of soldiers, including their own. While European countries continued to use this tactic as the war progressed, the United States […]
Teamwork and Transparency—There is No Gate
His office is overflowing with memorabilia from his travels and deployments around the world. African artifacts line the long windowsill. Pictures of past platoons are stacked on the floor. Hundreds of military challenge coins are displayed on racks, across his desk and under the glass top of his conference table. “I like bringing back souvenirs […]
Old-Fashioned Hard Work Fuels Family Business
It’s a family-business success story to emulate. Founded in 1918 as the Corbin Ice and Fuel Company, it was the embodiment of the hopes and dreams of Nathan P. Corbin. Corbin worked delivering firewood to area residents in Harford County and decided to start his own business and work for himself. Gesturing a circle over […]
Success is Stacked in Their Favor
According to research, only 12 percent of family-owned businesses are still operating and viable by the third generation. With two fourth-generation progeny at the executive level, Independent Can Company, a family-owned business since 1929, has already beaten the odds. “We operate the company from a core set of values we developed with our employees,” explains […]
Full Steam Ahead
For some people, life is a well-planned journey of fulfilling dreams and meeting expectations. For others, it happens fast and furiously. Content McLaughlin falls in the latter group. She introduces herself and explains that her unusual name, “Content as in happy,” was handed down through her family and traces back to her Scottish genealogy. She […]
The Wealth Builder
Don Lewis revels in the fact that he’s helping members build their wealth and empowering people in his position as president/CEO of Aberdeen Proving Ground Federal Credit Union (APGFCU). He sings the praises of his 300 employees and remains extremely loyal to APGFCU’s mission of returning the profits to the credit union members. “I receive […]
With so few women in the construction industry, there really isn’t a stereotype to compare her to – she has a firm handshake and manicured nails, and is dressed like a thousand other workers in offices across the country. But as the female president of a $30 million construction company, Susie Comer raised more than […]
The Billion-Dollar Man
“I refuse to lose,” says Tom Fidler, referencing the tumultuous journey he conquered getting national retail giant JCPenney to a signed lease as the second anchor at the Boulevard at Box Hill. “When you know it’s the right transaction, the right opportunity, the right tenant, you make it happen.” Fidler’s tenacity in deal making and […]
The Body Specialists
The walls of his practice are covered with photos of recognizable athletes, medical illustrations of the spinal column, certificates of achievement – even a framed commemorative LP of rock band Warrant’s chart-topping album “Dirty Rotten Filthy Stinking Rich” (more about that later). Copies of ESPN – The Magazine, Muscle & Fitness, Entrepreneur and Parents Magazine […]
Leadership from the Heart
Lyle Sheldon, President and CEO Upper Chesapeake Health Compassion. Excellence. Integrity. These words represent the legacy of Upper Chesapeake Health (UCH) under the leadership of Lyle Sheldon, president and CEO. This not-for-profit, community based, two-hospital system thrives under Sheldon’s steady guidance. Meeting with I95 Business in the volunteer services offices, the uncharacteristically CEO-like environment of […]
The Art of the Possible
You notice the hair first. You can’t help it. The shocking platinum bob in contrast to her stark black suit belies her age but portends the wisdom she is about to share. “The world is wide open,” she says with a smile. “You may not be able to control what life throws at you, but […]
All That She Wanted
Sharon Epple, President, Benchmark Administrative Support Services, Inc. It’s a familiar scenario played out repeatedly in households across the country. In 1986, Sharon Epple was a new mother and young wife, working full-time and going to college. Her husband traveled extensively for his job, leaving the bulk of the childcare responsibilities to Epple. Not wanting […]
The Game has Changed – Adapt or Fail
There’s nothing “small” about small business. Federal guidelines define a small business as an entity with fewer than 500 employees for manufacturing businesses and less than $7 million in annual receipts for most non-manufacturing businesses. Those are impressive numbers when most people envision a small business as the little jewelry shop on the corner or […]
Front and Center at The Gate: Raytheon
Small Business Initiatives Are a Big Priority Raytheon (NYSE: RTN) is a big fish in a sea of large government contractors at APG. What’s unique and different about Raytheon is not just the company’s front and center location at Aberdeen Proving Ground’s (APG) The Gate, although Raytheon boasts it was the first building onsite. It’s […]
The Reputation Keepers
Years ago, Warren Buffet warned, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.” Today, Facebook, Twitter, TMZ and a 24/7 news cycle have shortened that descent to less than two minutes. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Tiger Woods. The Tylenol tampering and […]
Building a New Workforce
Maryland’s first community college was established in Hagerstown in 1946 serving a population ready to focus on rebuilding after the trauma of World War II. Soon after, President Truman’s 1947 Commission on Higher Education called for universal access to higher education for all American citizens through the creation of state systems of community colleges. Since […]
If You Build It, Who Will Come?
The Base Realignment And Closure (BRAC) of 2005 to Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG) is nearing its full implementation date in September. Just under 60 new companies have joined the APG community in and around Harford County in support of BRAC, while others like SAIC and AVON Protection have expanded their footprint. Millions of square feet […]