Each year The Patuxent Partnership’s (TPP) Annual Meeting focuses on bringing important information into the spotlight for the Southern Maryland community. From the Connected Warrior Foundation in 2014, to Operation Tohidu and Greenwell Foundation in 2015, the information provided has proven to be beneficial.
Late last month, TPP hosted it’s 2016 Annual Meeting with the topic this year being “Innovation in Southern Maryland.” The topic allowed guest speakers, Dr. Rebecca Bridgett, St. Mary’s County Administrator, and Mr. John Wasilisin, President and Chief Operating Officer, Maryland Technology Development Corporation (TEDCO), to focus on three key areas for Southern Maryland: economic development, technology innovation and the current progress of the recently announced incubation space to be built at the St. Mary’s County Regional Airport.
Before both presenters gave their briefs, Gene Townsend, President of the TPP Board of Directors, and Bonnie Green, TPP Executive Director gave their remarks. Townsend expressed his gratitude for all that TPP members, board members, volunteers and staff do for the community with many thanks to board members stepping down as well as current and continuing board members.
Next, Townsend introduced newly elected board members for the 2017 term. This year, seven extraordinary TPP members were elected to the board:
- Dr. Rebecca Bridgett, St. Mary’s County Administrator
- Mr. Adam Hammett, HTii
- Ms. Jackie Marsteller, Marsteller LLC
- Mr. Ed Rule, Navy Systems, Inc.
- Mr. J.D. Fassett, Georgia Tech Research Institute
- Mr. Frank Schenk, Autodesk
- Dr. Michael Wick, St. Mary’s College of Maryland
Three board members were also elected to the TPP executive committee:
- Treasurer, Mr. Ray Wernecke, Booz Allen Hamilton
- Secretary, Mr. Kal Leikach, Sabre Systems
- Member at Large, Mr. Adam Hammett, HTii
Returning board members include:
- President, Mr. Gene Townsend, GT Financial Services, Inc.
- Vice President, Mr. Ajay Sehgal, KBR Wyle
- Mr. Chuck Angus, Raytheon
- Mr. Randy Loyer, PwC
- Rear Adm. (ret.) Steve Eastburg, Smartronix
- Dr. Tracy Harris, College of Southern Maryland
- Ms. Linda Vassallo, Calvert County Economic Development
- Rear Adm. (ret.), Bert Johnston
- Mr. Mike Johnston, PAE
“This is your TPP Board or Directors,” as Townsend exclaimed.
Bonnie Green was next up, with a brief overview of TPP’s activities over the past year. The Pax River Tech Demo and Update Day, Harnessing the Power of Big Data, COMFRC update and the continuing Office of Naval Research Grant were all topics covered by Green. If you would like more information about TPP’s activities their 2016 Annual Report is now available at their offices or any of their upcoming programs.
Dr. Rebecca Bridgett was able to lay out the current state of the St. Mary’s County Technology Business Incubator. She said there are three main goals with the project, “technology commercialization, diversification of the local economy, accelerating the growth of the local aviation industry technologies and pivoting the economy towards technology related industries while supporting technology entrepreneurs.
The incubator is designed to have prototyping and fabrication capabilities, electrical fabrication, workstations for software development, wet lab space and general office equipment housed in a 6,000-square foot space located at the St. Mary’s County Regional Airport. This will give entrepreneurs access to shared runway space.
The county is planning to open the incubator in spring of 2017 serving between 6 and 12 start-up businesses.
Mr. John Wasilisin provided an overview of TEDCO and the support it provides to new business ventures. TEDCO is made up of a number of different parts from mentoring and education programs to active funding programs TEDCO has awarded $22M to start-ups since 1998. Over 14 years TEDCO has made 400+ seed investments with $1B follow-on funding, a 45.5:1 ratio, “We have the highest follow-on funding ration in the country,” Wasilisin said, “no one is close to us, Ohio is second with a 13:1 ration.” TEDCO is also involved with the development of the new St. Mary’s County Technology Business Incubator.
TEDCO’s mentorship and education programs include subjects like executive excellence, portfolio workshops, business plan critiques and pitch development and coaching. “We want to see you succeed,” Wasilisin said.
Locally, Angela Singleton is the TEDCO representative for St. Mary’s County. If you would like more information about TEDCO or would like to contact them about your business opportunity, visit their website at www.tedco.md.
TPP fosters collaboration and the sharing of knowledge and expertise across a diverse network including: educational institutions; industry; local, state and federal governments; and TPP employees and members. TPP also promotes STEM education and workforce development within the local community by hosting programs of interest to NAVAIR, NAWCAD and the broader DoD community. Visit www.paxpartnership.org.