FOUNDATION FOCUS | Building Maryland’s 21st-century workforce  

June 18, 2020

The Maryland Chamber Foundation was revived in 2017 to enhance educational and workforce development opportunities for Marylanders. Take a look at the exciting ways our Foundation is investing in Maryland’s future.

The Maryland Chamber Foundation hopes the June issue of Foundation Focus finds you safe and healthy as we take the next steps on the road to recovery. We continue to expand the breadth of our COVID-19 webinar series to focus on economic resiliency. We also have introduced a new webinar series that will start in July. To learn more and to get a full update on the Foundation’s activities, keep reading below.


Update: Summer 2020 Teacher Externship Program

We’re pleased to announce that four members of the Maryland Chamber will move forward with sponsoring and hosting a teacher extern this summer: BGE; KCI Technologies; Stanley Black & Decker; and Leidos. Each will host a talented high school teacher from the Baltimore or Capital region:

Mr. Kibwe Shelton, a plumbing teacher at Mergenthaler Vocational-Technical High School (Mervo) in Baltimore City, will complete his summer externship at BGE.

Ms. Shiron Lindsay, a computer science and engineering teacher at Baltimore Polytechnic Institute in Baltimore City, will head to KCI Technologies for her externship.

Mr. Jeffrey Mueller, who teaches foundations of engineering and advanced design applications at Catonsville High School in Baltimore County, will do his externship at Stanley Black & Decker.

Ms. Carolyn Lane, a mathematics teacher at Rockville High School in Montgomery County, will have a virtual experience with Leidos.

All four companies have taken the necessary steps and precautions to protect their employees and externs during the COVID-19 pandemic, and have successfully customized their externship programs to have more virtual components. Congratulations and best wishes to our teachers for a successful and productive summer externship!


Check out our upcoming COVID-19 webinars

Over the next couple weeks, the Maryland Chamber Foundation will host two more webinars in its COVID-19 webinar series, with a special focus on economic resiliency.

Impact of COVID-19 on Maryland’s Economy, Presented by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond

Register here

Wednesday, June 24

11 AM to 12 PM (EDT)

Join us for a conversation with Andy Bauer, vice president and regional executive for the Baltimore branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. Mr. Bauer will discuss the Federal Reserve’s recent and unprecedented actions and share his thoughts on the U.S. economy, including what the Richmond Fed learned through business outreach, and the key components to a successful recovery.

Maryland manufacturers: Policy priorities & recovery, Presented by the National Association of Manufacturers

Register here

Tuesday, June 30

11 AM to 11:30 AM (EDT)

Join us for a conversation with Patrick Hedren, vice president and deputy general counsel, and Michael O’Brien, assistant vice president of advocacy, of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). Mr. Hedren and Mr. O’Brien will help us understand the unprecedented climate of legal uncertainty across the business landscape, which has been created by governmental responses to the COVID-19 crisis. As the exclusive State Association Partner, we are pleased to partner with NAM on this webinar.

For more details on our COVID-19 Webinar Series, please visit our Events page. If you are unable to participate, please note that we provide links to full recordings of all of our COVID-19 webinars, available on our COVID-19 Chamber Resources page.

If you have any questions, or wish to discuss a sponsored webinar, please contact Whitney Harmel at wharmel@mdchamber.org or (410) 269-0642, ext. 1117.


Webinar series on equity and inclusion to launch next month

The deeply painful and tragic events of the past few months, brought into the national spotlight by the movement of the last several weeks, underscore the urgent need for business, community and policy leaders to come together and raise their voices to confront the racism, injustice and inequality that plague so many of our communities.

Last week, we shared the news that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce had launched a National Initiative to Address Inequality of Opportunity and would be hosting a national townhall on this important issue next Thursday, June 25.

The Maryland Chamber is pleased to take part in the townhall, which will bring together business and community leaders to discuss concrete actions that can be taken by the government and the private sector to address inequality and systemic racism through education, employment, entrepreneurship and criminal justice reform.

In the days following the townhall, the Maryland Chamber Foundation will launch a webinar series—”Promoting Equity and Inclusion in the Workplace”—that will be available to all Maryland Chamber members and members of the business community. Starting in July 2020, the Foundation will host a one-hour webinar every other month for a year (six webinars). The series will showcase best practices for promoting equity and inclusion in the workplace, and will feature business leaders from high-profile companies who are already doing their part to drive systemic change in their own organizations and communities.

There will be an opportunity for participants to ask questions at the end of each webinar; participants will also be provided with resource materials to take back to their respective workplaces so they can share what they learned with their colleagues. These materials will also be posted on our website for the general public.

While we acknowledge that the business community does not have all the answers, we are prepared to listen, learn and take the proactive steps necessary to create meaningful change in the workplace and beyond. Together, we can ensure that equality, diversity and criminal justice reform are at the forefront of our discussions on public policy.

As business leaders, we have an obligation to do what we can to create a better tomorrow for all Maryland citizens—so please consider supporting this important webinar series and the Maryland Chamber Foundation’s initiatives for equity in opportunity. For more information, please contact Christine Ross at christineross@mdchamber.org or (410) 269-0642, ext. 1130.


Using a data-based approach to drive our state’s future

Now more than ever, the Maryland Chamber must put significant resources into rebuilding the strength of our state’s economy. The Maryland Chamber Foundation is seeking support to help underwrite (1) quarterly updates on economic trends in Maryland at the state and regional levels, such as employment growth, wage growth, unemployment rates, total employment by sector, and labor force participation rates as compared to national norms, and (2) an annual analysis of the benefits attributable to the Maryland Chamber of Commerce’s legislative activities in terms of the economic impact of key legislation that MDCC successfully supported or opposed.

The Maryland Chamber of Commerce will use the analyses to drive its legislative activities; guide the decision-making of its government affairs team and policy committees, who will consider which bills to support or oppose during the 2021 state legislative session; and shape our policy efforts in the areas of workforce development and effective placement of unemployed Maryland workers.

If you are interested in supporting the Maryland Chamber Foundation’s initiatives for economic resiliency or would like more information, please contact Christine Ross at christineross@mdchamber.org or (410) 269-0642, ext. 1130.


Member Spotlight series showcases Chamber members who are making a difference

As part of our Member Spotlight series, Vice President of Membership and Development Whitney Harmel is interviewing members of the Chamber who have emerged as leaders throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

For her eighth interview in the series, she interviewed Michael Kiely, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of U.S. Government Affairs for UPS. Based in Washington, D.C., Mr. Kiely is responsible for leading the company’s legislative strategy and advocacy efforts as they pertain to the federal government and 50 state governments. Listen to the interview here to find out how UPS is continuing to operate safely and efficiently, despite the challenges posed by the coronavirus.

To listen to the other interviews in our Member Spotlight Series, please click the button below.

View Maryland Chamber blog page


Click here to view up-to-the-minute COVID-19 resources on the Maryland Chamber of Commerce’s COVID-19 resources page.

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