Veteran Small Business Owners Honored for Leadership and Community Contributions
ANNAPOLIS, MD–The Governor's Office of Small, Minority & Women Business Affairs today commemorated Veteran's Day by hosting the 2022 Veteran-Owned Small Business Appreciation Luncheon at Maryland Live! Casino & Hotel in Hanover. The inaugural event celebrated the achievements of local veteran entrepreneurs, with five men and women receiving governor's citations.
“Maryland is home to more than 50,000 veteran-owned businesses," said Governor's Office of Small, Minority & Women Business Affairs Special Secretary Jimmy Rhee. “This was an opportunity to thank them for their service and celebrate their entrepreneurial spirit."
General Linda Singh, the first African American and first woman to lead the Maryland National Guard, presented the event keynote. In October, Governor Larry Hogan officially renamed the Maryland National Guard's Freedom Readiness Center as the Major General Linda L. Singh Readiness Center in her honor. General Singh has more than 30 years of leadership experience in the public and private sectors and today provides leadership and management consulting services as the founder and chief executive officer of Kaleidoscope Affect, LLC.
“I am honored and grateful to have this opportunity to connect with veteran entrepreneurs," said General Singh. “As soldiers, we lifted each other up, and I consider it a privilege to share what I have learned about leadership and resiliency to help other veteran small business owners thrive."
The event brought together 75 veterans and guests from across the state. Secretary Rhee presented governor's citations to five local veteran small business owners, recognizing each for their contributions to Maryland's economy, their commitment to entrepreneurship, and their contributions to the communities they serve. The recipients included:
- General Linda Singh – Kaleidoscope Affect, LLC
- Scott Thompson – DuraBante, LLC
- Angela McCullough – Tri-Logistics, LLC
- Carl Neimeyer – Bernward Consulting Associates, LLC
- Thomas Dvorak – Dvorak, LLC
Following the program, attendees had the opportunity to meet with a variety of small business stakeholder groups offering a range of resources from access to capital to educational programs and business coaching services for veteran small business owners. Maryland Live! Casino & Hotel, which supports the veteran community throughout the year, generously donated the space and catering services for the event.
This Veterans Day, the Governor's Coordinating Offices are proud to support Operation Green Light, an initiative coordinated through the Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs, County Veterans Affairs Commissions, the Maryland Association of Counties, and the Maryland Chamber of Commerce in support of Maryland's veterans and their families. Operation Green Light provides educational opportunities for governments, businesses and individuals to learn more about military culture, suicide prevention, and other issues veterans want us to know about service and transition from military culture to civilian culture. For more information about Operation Green Light, visit veterans.maryland.gov/operation-green-light/.
For more information about support and opportunities for veteran-owned small businesses, visit goMDsmallbiz.maryland.gov.