Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman, Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development Secretary Kenneth Holt, and City of Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley congratulated the third cohort of AAEDC’s Inclusive Ventures Program following the group’s recent graduation and pitch day.
Introduced by AAEDC in January 2021, IVP aims to help small and minority-owned, woman-owned, and veteran-owned businesses in the county succeed and grow by providing their owners with a wide array of resources such as business education and training, access to capital, and mentorship. Including the third cohort, 31 total business owners have completed and graduated from the program.
Reflecting the geographic and sector diversity of the county’s businesses, the 10 participating business owners included:
● Lydia Wainwright, Harbor Holistic, Severna Park
● Cherie Tyler, K&C Technologies, Odenton
● Samantha Jones, Zen & Crystals, Annapolis
● Amy Salmon, Salmon Insurance, Linthicum Heights
● Ann Williams, RA Movers, Hanover
● Jeremiah Batucan, Peake Social, Annapolis
● Meagan Connolly, Alchemi Designs, Arnold
● Modupe Eyo, TEAL Education Services, Crofton
● Della Roderick, August Rose Health Center, Glen Burnie
● Beth McFeely, McFeely Window Fashions, Millersville
During the IVP Pitch Day, each business owner presented his or her business growth plans to and responded to questions from a panel of expert judges, including potential investors. They then received a certificate for completing all components of the IVP: attending seven weekly three-hour classes led by business consultant Will Holmes, founder of Will Holmes Consulting and the Baltimore Economic Leadership League, and consultations with legal, human resources and accounting experts provided by AAEDC.
Finally, each participant received a $5,000 seed grant to serve as working capital for their business.