Archives for June 2013

Startup Maryland Starts UpGlobal with UNDER ARMOUR

Startup Maryland (, an initiative of the UpGlobal consortium (, today announced that UNDER ARMOUR® Founder and CEO Kevin Plank will participate as the first instructor for Raise Your Game™.

Raise Your Game is Startup Maryland’s bootcamp initiative developed to provide the entrepreneurial community with a structured educational program and to help startup CEOs and founders understand and employ the building blocks of strong startups and startup communities.  The new twist for this bootcamp is that the sessions will be proctored/taught by experienced (often serial) entrepreneurs who are very well-recognized and respected.

 “I firmly believe that entrepreneurs learn the most from other entrepreneurs,” stated Kevin Plank, Founder and CEO of Under Armour (NYSE: UA).  “I am honored to be part of the Startup Maryland bootcamp program, and I know I’ll be inspired by great thinkers who share their passions, while I offer my perspectives on what it takes to be a strong CEO and leader.”

Development of the Raise Your Game program and curriculum was led by Startup Maryland Entrepreneur Champions Sam Polakoff, (president of TBB Global Logistics), Gregg Smith (CEO of Koolspan) and Startup Maryland co-chair Michael Binko (CEO of kloudtrack®).

“As perhaps the most relevant and recognizable business icon in Maryland, Kevin is the perfect entrepreneur-leader to launch Raise Your Game,” stated Michael Binko, founder and Co-Chair of Startup Maryland and CEO of kloudtrack®.  “While Kevin’s Maryland Pride is undeniable, his commitment to give back to and mentor entrepreneur peers is the trait that has endeared him to startup founders – not only in Maryland and the United States but around the world.”

Beginning with the first session on July 25, 2013, Raise Your Game will consist of 6 monthly educational “bootcamp” programs emphasizing the critical components of building successful companies.

The 6 primary topics of the Raise Your Game bootcamp include:

  • CEO 101 (7/25) – How to be a strong startup CEO and team leader (Kevin Plank)
  • Starting Up (8/15) – Best practices when forming your company | avoiding pitfalls
  • Planning for Financial Success (9/19) – Financial Models, capitalization table, accounting
  • Virtualizing Your Company (10/17) – Lean Startup approach | outsourcing
  • Go-to-Market Strategies (11/21) – Sales, marketing, PR, channel | distribution
  • Raising Capital and Exit Roadmapping (12/19) – Lifecycle stages, financing options, exits

Registration can be found at:

Raise Your Game is the first component of Startup Maryland’s Coaching initiative.  Coaching joins Connection, Celebration and Capital as four primary Areas of Concentration for Startup Maryland throughout 2013 and beyond.  These four guiding initiatives were officially announced at a White House reception, during which Startup Maryland highlighted past successes and future plans for Presidential advisors and officials from several government agencies.

Whether entrepreneurs are just starting out with an idea or ready to inflect their startup into hyper-growth, Raise Your Game provides perspective and knowledge for leader-peers at all stages.

“Taught by experienced serial entrepreneurs/CEOs with specific subject matter expertise, Raise Your Game participants will be empowered to network with entrepreneur peers while gaining valuable perspectives from service (legal, accounting, PR/marketing) professionals who will also be invited to provide specific guidance on selected topics,” added Julie Lenzer Kirk, Startup Maryland co-chair.

Upon successful completion of the Raise Your Game program, graduate-CEOs will join an exclusive alumni network.  To learn more, watch the video replay of an informative Raise Your Game webinar here

Empowering Entrepreneur Champions

Near the end of 2012, Startup Maryland began a campaign to engage its participants as Entrepreneur Champion leaders for the Startup Maryland initiative.  With the support of the national Startup America team, Startup Maryland held a series of Champion sessions during which a Theme and Areas of Focus were identified and prioritized.  The connective and coaching/mentorship aspects of building strong startup communities compliment the celebration and capital access goals forming the four pillars of the Startup Maryland mission.

With active universities, accelerators, economic development agencies and innovation partners like Maryland TEDCO and the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED), Startup Maryland is concentrating on the entrepreneur communities to strengthen Maryland’s economic fabric while fostering a climate where the most promising companies can help each other while leveraging the state’s Unfair Advantage in order to inflect and thrive.

Looking for other startup/entrepreneur guidance and resources?  Join the Startup Maryland entrepreneurial community at


Fiber Fest: A Three-Day Celebration of Fiber Arts

The Fiber Arts Center of the Eastern Shore (FACES), will be hosting a three-day celebration of the fiber arts featuring exhibits, workshops, classes, guest speakers, demonstrations, quilt documentations, and special Underground Railroad themed programs in celebration of the grand opening of the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway.  fiberfest

This FiberFest event takes place August 1st through 3rd in Downtown Denton. Visit for details and registration information.

The event kicks off on Thursday, August 1st, with the Heartland Quilters of the Eastern Shore’s 5th annual One Stop Shop Hop at the Denton Firehouse from 2:00 pm to 8:00 pm.  This event will feature fiber arts vendors including quilt, antique quilt, fabric and yarn shops; beaders; wool spinners; long arm quilters; and much more. See for a full list of participating vendors from Maryland and surrounding states. Admission to the Shop Hop is $3.00 at the door. All guests receive an entry gift and can look forward to door prizes throughout the evening, and raffle quilts from participating guilds.  Food concessions will be available.

On Friday, August 2nd, from 4pm – 6pm, The Fiber Arts Center of the Eastern Shore (FACES), located at 7 N. Fourth Street in Denton, will host a special reception for its African American Quilters of Baltimore: Each One Teach One exhibit. Members of the AAQB will be on hand to discuss their work.  Following the reception, AAQB member and historian, Vera P. Hall, will give a talk about her Civil War Story quilt. The reception and lecture are free, but space is limited so visit to reserve your spot. Just prior to the reception, there will be a 3:30pm unveiling of the Stitching Stories of Freedom Byway Quilt Block: the Cotton Boll. Information about the Byway Quilt Block Trail, a public art project, can be found on

On Saturday, August 3rd, fiber art demonstrations will take place at FACES from 10am to 12pm, after which, the public is invited to participate in the FACES Quilt Documentation Project from 12pm – 4pm, where a written and photographic record of their vintage quilts will be documented. Documentation requires about 20-30 minutes per quilt for measuring, photographing, dating fabric, identifying patterns, and recording the quilt history. FACES will maintain this information in a database in order to preserve the legacy of quilt making, recognize its heritage, and share its story. Every quilt will be given a documentation tag, and quilt owners will be able to access their information on the website via an identification number. Quilt values will not be appraised. Pre-registration is required at

Fiber art classes will be held throughout the three-day event, including Sketching with Threads by Sylvia Snyder; Refresh, Relearn, Retool, Your Knitting Skills by Sue Pilsch; and Felting is Fun by Jackie Mathiason.  In addition to the AAQB exhibit, FACES will host a regional fiber arts sale; and fiber art exhibits at The Foundry, the Museum of Rural Life, and the Central Library will also be on display. Exhibit information and class registration can be found at

The Caroline County Council of Arts is sponsoring this event with funding from the Maryland State Arts Council an agency dedicated to cultivating a vibrant cultural community where the arts thrive. For more information on FiberFest or any of the planned activities, please contact Marina Dowdall at the Caroline County Council of Arts at or 410.479.1009.


Two Foot Rise In Sea Level Predicted By 2050 – Maryland Urged To Plan Ahead

The Baltimore Sun reported today that Maryland can expect a two foot rise in sea level by the year 2050.

The report was commissioned by Governor O’Malley and was created by a team of 21 scientists from the surrounding area. The scientists report that sea level rise is happening much faster than thought even five years ago.

Read the Baltimore Sun’s story here.

Clay Stamp, Director of Talbot County Emergency Services said “the report certainly has our attention. From an emergency management perspective we must embrace this emerging information and begin to address it practically in conjunction with our communities and state and federal partners from several approaches.
First, a key component in a successful emergency management program for a community is to identify risks and then working with the community begin looking for ways to build ‘community resiliency.’ This is accomplished by mitigating the identified risks and then ensuring response plans are in place for what is not practical or possible to mitigate. Also, it is in communicating risk through public awareness and planning efforts that our communities are better able to effectively manage risks.”

Stamp said that new flood maps are being developed using the latest technologies, but no maps exist at this time to show the potential impact of a two foot rise in sea level in Talbot County.

Special Olympics Challenged by Sparse Population

olympicsSpecial Olympics Maryland has only one paid employee designated for the Eastern Shore, which limits the benefits for the athletes and the effectiveness of fundraising.

The Special Olympics provides completely free practices and competitions to individuals with intellectual disorders and the sports offered include basketball, golf, kayaking, softball, and many more.The organization serves 6,500 athletes with intellectual disabilities, of the 125,000 in Maryland, says Jason Schriml, Vice President of Communications. This means about five percent of this population is served. Pennsylvania also serves about five percent, but from a pool of over 381,000 intellectually disabled individuals.

Eddie Cherrix, the sole staff member on the Eastern Shore, is the Regional Administrator, and is assisted only by two administrative volunteers for both the upper and lower shores.

“The over 250 Special Olympic athletes on the Eastern Shore can be broken down into two groups: interscholastic and community,” Cherrix said.

The interscholastic program is a unified group offered to high school students.  The program pairs a disabled athlete with a non-disabled athlete, offering a minimum of two 90-minute practices per week, two competitions per season, and a state invitational. It is available to athletes in the fall, winter, and spring. The community program is offered to athletes with intellectual disabilities, from 8-years-old and up.  While still offering three seasons, the program goes year-round with the spring and summer sessions combined, and it’s Cherrix’s responsibility to oversee both programs, the athletes, and their volunteer-based coaches.

The Eastern Shore has two problems impeding the success of Special Olympics Maryland: a large land area with a low population, and a low amount of revenue generated by fundraising compared to other regions in the state. As the Eastern Shore covers a large area, it is geographically difficult for one person to cover it.  Also, because of the sparse population, it is hard to get transportation for the athletes, many of whom, live in group homes. With only two subregions on the shore, transportation is especially important, as athletes may have a long commute.

Tolbert Rowe is the father of 25-year-old Kelsey Rowe, a Special Olympics athlete, and has been involved with the program for about ten years.

“A major drawback is the distance athletes have to travel,” Rowe said.

Cherrix explained that there are not enough athletes to create a team in the mid-shore and that collaborating with Delaware is also not an option because Special Olympics Maryland is separate from the adjacent state’s organization. “Awareness is the best way to get more volunteers and athletes involved, and to encourage community engagement,” he said. This topic directly affects the athletes, as it causes low numbers of participation, resulting in fewer teams and greater travel time.

Rowe is also an active volunteer who’s Special Olympics coaching experience includes basketball and kayaking. “It’s difficult to find coaches,” he said. “It’s difficult to reach out, identify athletes, and get community involvement.”

The spring and summer seasons were original separate. However, when they merged, golf and kayaking began to compete for participants, specifically in the program based on the lower shore at Martinak State Park.  Many of the athletes who previously had participated in both now had to choose.

Rowe was the coach of both sports, and opted to drop kayaking. After the seasons merged, the Martinak group lost Rowe as their coach, and the athletes lost their team.special

Aside from a lack of awareness to recruit volunteers and athletes, Rowe also discussed the difficulties in coaching the Special Olympics athletes.

“You have to be very patient and very understanding. Some athletes will never get past a certain skill level,” Rowe says. “It’s difficult to find coaches who meet those qualifications.”

The Eastern Shore’s low population is also a problem for regional fundraising amplified by the fact that most counties on the shore have average household incomes below state values, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Also, because most of the shore’s athletes live in group homes, fundraising can be a challenge. Cherrix used Little League as an analogy: parents of these athletes will often get their businesses to sponsor their children’s teams, whereas the Special Olympics athlete would not have that option, being cared for by paid staff, rather than parents.

The largest fundraiser for Special Olympics Maryland is the Polar Bear Plunge, held every January at Sandy Point State Park.  This year’s plunge raised over $2 million, and is approximately one-third of their total annual fundraising.

Other ways of building revenue come from partnerships with private businesses and a variety of other, smaller fundraisers. The organization receives a minimal amount of funding from a government grant.

With a second Special Olympics Maryland employee based on the Eastern Shore, there would be opportunity for a more concentrated effort to build awareness and to raise funds.

Both Cherrix and Rowe believe an additional staff member would be beneficial.

“It would make it much easier from a managerial standpoint with an extra director and the current regional director has a lot on his plate,” Rowe says.

It would also help the organization’s present goal to double the amount of athletes the non-profit serves in five years, Schriml said. Schriml believes that expanding the programs in both Western Maryland and the Eastern Shore, as well as building a strong interscholastic program can help the organization reach it’s goal.

Though the Eastern Shore has comparatively less athletes, funding, staff, and volunteers than the rest of the state, Special Olympics in the area still provides great benefits.

“It’s given her an outlet for exercise,” Rowe said of his daughter. “She gets the opportunity to try her best.”

“The Special Olympics is more a way of life than a program,” Cherrix said. “It teaches life lessons, builds camaraderie, team building skills, and goal setting.”

“It doesn’t take long to get pulled in,” Rowe says. “It’s fun. You just enjoy it.”


Shore Bancshares Employees Support the Ronald McDonald House Charity

Employees from Shore Bancshares and its family of companies came together to support the Ronald McDonald House Charity as they participated in the 5K Strawberry Chase at the Strawberry Festival in Ridgely.  The 5K is an annual event organized by Jens Gems Running and the Ridgely Lions Club.  The event started in 2011 with only a handful of runners.  This year there were 87 participants and $1,500 was raised for the Ronald McDonald House Charity.

L to R:  Abby Graves, Shore Bancshares, Macy Graves, Ryan Snow, Talbot Bank, Jessica Kilby, Shore Bancshares, Chad Cronshaw, CNB, Joanna Barbee, CNB, Brenda Beaver, CNB, and Terry Kimbles, CNB.

L to R: Abby Graves, Shore Bancshares, Macy Graves, Ryan Snow, Talbot Bank, Jessica Kilby, Shore Bancshares, Chad Cronshaw, CNB, Joanna Barbee, CNB, Brenda Beaver, CNB, and Terry Kimbles, CNB.


Summer Center for the Arts Concert at SU

Award-winning actor Daniel Beaty performs his critically acclaimed one-man play Emergency 7:30 p.m. Thursday, July 11, in the Wicomico Room of Salisbury University’s Guerrieri University Center.

The performance, benefiting the Salisbury Wicomico Arts Council (SWAC), is presented as part of SU’s Maryland Summer Center for the Arts, a two-week residential program for middle and high school students throughout the state.

The Obie Award-winning play combines slam poetry and song as Beaty portrays 40 different individuals reacting to the sight of a slave ship that mysteriously emerges in front of the Statue of Liberty. Characters offering their take on the unexpected phenomenon include a homeless man, scientist, business executive, street vendor and pre-teen from the projects, providing a commentary on freedom and humanity. The off-Broadway production was presented to sold-out crowds during an extended run at the Public Theatre.

New York Magazine called it “funnier than most serious plays and vastly smarter than most funny plays, adding it was “the most intriguing new show of the season.” hailed it as “the most important new American drama since Angels in America.”

Beaty has received accolades from critics and colleagues alike. A two-time winner of the NAACP Theatre Award, including one for best actor, he has worked throughout the United States, Europe and Africa, performing with Ossie Davis, Tracy Chapman and Phylicia Rashad, among others. In addition, he received the Scotsman Fringe First Award for best new writer at the Edinburgh Festival and was presented with a Lamplighter Award from the Black Leadership Forum in Washington, D.C.

Beaty’s other theatre works have included Through the NightBreath & Imagination – The Story of Roland Hayes and The Tallest Tree in the Forest. Beyond the stage, he has written a children’s book, based on his poem Knock Knock, as well as a spoken-word ballet, Far But Close, which the Dance Theatre of Harlem debuted in 2012. He also is an adjunct professor at Columbia University.

His Salisbury performance is funded through SWAC’s Nancy and Robert Allen. To reserve tickets call 410-543-ARTS or visit SWAC’s Web site at Tickets also are available at the SWAC office, 104 Poplar Hill Ave., Salisbury, and at area Bank of Delmarva branches.

For more information on the Summer Center for the Arts, call 410-548-4777, ext. 2, or visit the center’s Web site


Op-Ed: The Latest Harris Outrages

In recent votes and a press release, Congressman Andy Harris continues to demonstrate his eagerness to leave millions of Americans hungry, to support a big government takeover of a woman’s body, and to falsely implicate the White House in the IRS scandal.

In voting yes on the recent Farm Bill, which was mercifully defeated, Harris voted to cut $33 billion from the Food Stamp (SNAP) program, which would have eliminated food assistance to two million people, most working families and seniors. The program, which was created by a bipartisan majority in the 70’s (sponsored by Bob Dole and George McGovern), has served as a powerful boon to economic recovery since its inception.  Harris and other conservatives wanted to toughen work requirements for SNAP recipients, but at the same time would slash funding for training programs.  Its defeat, according to the Washington Post, was a “moral imperative”, also noting that several GOP lawmakers voting against farm subsidies have actually received such subsidies.  The Post excoriates Harris and those who voted yes guilty of “a shockingly cruel attitude toward the poor.”

In voting yes on the abortion ban, which would ban abortions after 20 weeks, Harris subscribed to an unproven medical theory that fetuses can feel pain.  Moreover, victims of rape and incest must report these assaults to criminal authorities, but there is no provision for exceptions to women with severe fetal anomalies or situations where a women’s health is threatened by pregnancy.  Incredibly, those GOP lawmakers who advanced the bill out of the Judiciary Committee were all men, led by Republican Chair Trent Franks’ comment that “the incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy is very low,” a breathtaking falsehood that Harris seems to support, and reminds us of Todd Akins’ “legitimate rape” gaffe.

By voting yes, Harris, who should know better, continues, according to Democratic Representative Louise Slaughter, “to tell women what they can and cannot do, despite what the constitution (Roe v. Wade) tells them they can do.”  Rather than focus on creating jobs, something Harris only pays lip service to, he believes it’s more important to support an unconstitutional abortion ban or repeal Obamacare 37 times, both a colossal waste of taxpayer money.

And finally (for now), a June 22 press release from Harris excoriates the waste of money in the Prince Georges and Baltimore City Schools (in itself very debatable) by putting them in the context of the IRS scandal, blaming the IRS division for “wasting hard-earned tax dollars and refusing to take responsibility for wrongdoing.”  I don’t know where the myopic Harris gets his information, but no “wrongdoing” has been proved, in fact quite the opposite.  GOP Oversight Chair Darrell Issa has tried to cherry-pick the evidence to support a pre-conceived conclusion, but full transcripts have proven his (surprise!) mendacity.  And we now know, according to new IRS Head Danny Werfel, that not only Tea Party groups were targeted, but liberal groups with “Occupy” or “Progressive” in their titles, and that there has been no White House involvement at any stage.

Harris’ lunar ideology and complete disregard of evidence that does not suit his arguments is common knowledge, and even Republicans are tiring of him.  His votes against the Violence Against Women Act, against Hurricane Sandy funding in his own district, and willingness to send the country into default are but a few examples of his irresponsibility.  He needs to know that we are watching as he conducts his War on Women and the Poor, and we’ll remember in 2014.

Richard Calkins, President
Talbot County Democratic Forum

Book Bits – Surviving Andersonville: One Prisoner’s Recollections

SurvivingAndersonville001From 1864 into 1865, the largest city in Georgia was not Atlanta, but Camp Sumter, a Civil War prison near Andersonville.

Surviving Andersonville: One Prisoner’s Recollection of the Civil War’s Most Notorious Camp, a first-person account edited by Salisbury University archivist David Ranzan, tells the horrific story of the brutal conditions that existed in the prison from the point of view of Irish immigrant Edward Glennan.

Glennan was a child in 1846, when the Irish Potato Famine forced many to flee Ireland. He immigrated to England with his parents and siblings, spending more than a decade there. By about 1857, the family had saved enough money to travel to the United States, where they sought a new life in the American Midwest.

At the beginning of the Civil War, many Irish-Americans, filled with patriotism for their adopted home, joined the Union Army. Glennan’s experiences in England and the American South gave him more encouragement to sign up than most.

During his time in England, he had heard British soldiers romanticize their time in combat. In addition, he had worked in the South during the winter immediately preceding the war and formed a less-than-favorable opinion of the general attitudes of the men in that part of the nation. He joined the 42nd Illinois Infantry Regiment in 1861.

In fall 1863, he was captured behind Confederate lines and was incarcerated at prisons in Virginia, then transferred to Andersonville, where he endured eight months among some 40,000 other captured federal soldiers, sailors and civilians. A first sergeant with the Union Army, he wrote down his experiences in 1891 while a patient at the Leavenworth National Home in Kansas.

Ranzan first became aware of Glennan’s journal in 2008 while inventorying the archival holdings of SU’s Edward H. Nabb Research Center for Delmarva History and Culture. He discovered second-generation photocopies of the nearly 300 pages of writings among items in the center’s Rose Embry Carey Collection. A resident of Salisbury, Carey is Glennan’s great-grandniece.

“After several days of reading the soldier’s memoir, I was hooked,” said Ranzan. “His narrative illustrated the hardships typical of prisoners of war, but with a personable flair that quickly drew me into his story. The humor, cynicism, honesty, desperation and hatred in his struggle to remain human at a place shrouded in inhumanity and horror drew me in.”

During his time at Camp Sumter, Glennan witnessed hangings and escape attempts, and participated in gambling, trading and rationing. Afflicted with scurvy, he nearly lost his ability to walk.

“Never while our Merciful Creator lets me live and retain my senses can I forget that date, the 20th of March, 1864,” Glennan wrote. “No, if I wanted to, I could not forget it, for I am reminded of it every time I see my features and hair in a glass. Yes, every time I receive a twinge of pain and think to myself, ‘Where did that come from?’ the answer is ‘Andersonville.’ Every time I have to sit down from weakness while walking for exercise and I wonder to myself what make me so weak, again I answer ‘Andersonville.’”

In the end, only his cunning survival skills saved him from the fate of an estimated 13,000 prisoners who were killed during the 14 months Camp Sumter was in operation.

The book represents Ranzan’s third documentary editing project. Others include The Papers of the War Department, 1784-1800 andThe Thomas A. Edison Papers.

For more information call 410-543-6030 or visit the SU Web site at


Homicide Charges Filed in St. Michael’s Death

A Talbot County Grand Jury today issued an indictment for a St. Michaels man who is now in police custody and is being charged in connection with the death of an Easton man whose body was found along a rural road in the county earlier this month.

The suspect is identified as Matthew Mikowski, 17, of the 9000-block of Bozman-Neavit Road, St. Michaels, Maryland. The suspect was taken into custody this afternoon by troopers from the Maryland State Police State Apprehension Team at a location in Wernersville, Pennsylvania without incident. He is currently being held at the Berks County Jail pending extradition proceedings.

Mikowski is charged as an adult on an indictment from a Talbot County Grand Jury with second degree murder, reckless endangerment, second degree assault, and four counts of distribution of LSD. The indictment was issued by the Grand Jury convened by the Talbot County State’s Attorney’s Office, after evidence was presented from the Maryland State Police Homicide Unit investigation.

The investigation began on June 10, 2013, after troopers from the Easton Barrack responded to reports of a deceased man lying in the area of Bozman-Neavitt Road and St. Michaels Road. The deceased was later identified as Samuel I. Cross, 18, of Easton, Md. Cross’ Honda Pilot was also found nearby. An autopsy conducted by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore ruled the cause of death was asphyxiation and the manner of death was homicide.

The investigation has established Cross, Mikowski and other acquaintances were together in an area behind Mikowski’s home during the night of June 9th. Evidence developed during the investigation indicates the group may have been involved in the use of LSD. According to witnesses, Mikowski restrained Cross around the neck which resulted in his death. Investigators believe Cross’ body was later placed near his vehicle by Mikowski, where it was subsequently seen by those who called police.

No Injuries Reported in Small Plane Crash on Kent Island

(Stevensville, MD) – Information is still being gathered, but Maryland State Police are reporting there are no injuries reported at the scene of a small plane that crashed in the Kent Island area of Queen Anne’s County this afternoon.

The two occupants of the small plane are not being identified until their families can be notified, but neither report sustaining any injuries. The plane is described as a Cirrus SR22.

Just after 2:45 p.m. today, troopers from the Centreville Barrack responded to the area of Romancoke Road and Kentmorr Road in Stevensville, Md., after receiving 9-1-1 calls reporting the plane crash. Upon arrival, troopers observed a small plane at the crash site.

The cause of the crash is unknown. State Police have notified officials with the National Transportation Safety Board and the Federal Aviation Administration. The investigation is continuing.