Startups

These Maryland tech, ed and industry leaders are TEDCO’s newest board officers

Returning chair Omar S. Muhammad and secretary Jennifer Elisseeff will work with a trio of new officers to lead the 19-person, largely governor-appointed board.

Clockwise from top left: Omar S. Muhammad, Ellen Flowers-Fields, Jennifer Elisseeff, Jeffrey Rhoda and Eben Smith.

(Courtesy photos, composite image by Technical.ly)

Three leaders of premiere Maryland educational institutions (two in Baltimore, one south of DC) join an ex-IBM executive and consultancy president to lead the State of Maryland-connected funding entity TEDCO’s board of directors.

TEDCO announced its latest slate of board officers earlier this week, following a virtual election that took place at TEDCO’s Sept. 15 board meeting — the same date the new officers’ tenure took effect.

A statement noted that Omar S. Muhammad, the director of Morgan State University’s Entrepreneurial Development and Assistance Center, will return to chair the board for a second year. His election last year made him the first Black professional to lead TEDCO’s board in its near-quarter-century of existence.

“Our board has been laser-focused on TEDCO’s mission of enhancing economic empowerment by fostering an inclusive and entrepreneurial innovation ecosystem, and that will continue in my second term,” Muhammad said in a statement.

Muhammad will work with the following board officers:

  • Vice chair Ellen Flowers-Fields, an associate vice president of continuing education and workforce development at the College of Southern Maryland
  • Secretary Jennifer Elisseeff, a professor and director of the Translational Tissue Engineering Center at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine
  • Treasurer Jeffrey Rhoda, a retired executive who most recently served in a position overseeing IBM’s operations in China
  • Assistant treasurer Eben Smith, president of Three|E Consulting Group, a multifaceted business consultancy in Prince George’s County

All of the board officers besides Elisseeff and Muhammad are new to their posts. TEDCO’s board consists of 19 members, including the officers, who largely work in the state’s higher education, technology, business and government sectors. Fourteen of those members are appointed by the governor with Maryland Senate confirmation, while the state Senate’s president and speaker of the state’s House of Delegates each appoint two.

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In the last year, TEDCO has leaned into Muhammad’s aforementioned equity priorities through projects like The Open Institute for Black Women Entrepreneur Excellence, which it launched in partnership with Howard County’s government and the state’s historically Black colleges and universities (including Morgan State). CEO Troy LeMaile-Stovall celebrated Muhammad’s leadership in TEDCO’s announcement.

“Omar exemplifies TEDCO’s values of accountability and integrity; he has been a tremendous support in these uncertain times as we seek to carry out TEDCO’s crucial mission.”

See the full list of board members -30-
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