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Posted on: March 8, 2021

Press Release: Annapolis Supports “Inclusive Ventures Program” with Minority Business Grant



Mayor Gavin Buckley


Public Information Office

160 Duke of Gloucester Street

Annapolis, Maryland 21401




Media Contact: Mitchelle Stephenson, 410-972-7724 or                  


Annapolis Supports “Inclusive Ventures Program” with $10K Grant to Support Minority Businesses


Annapolis, MD (March 5, 2021) – The City of Annapolis is issuing a $10,000 grant to the Anne Arundel Economic Development Corporation (AAEDC) to support at least two Annapolis businesses in the fall cohort of AAEDC’s “Inclusive Ventures Program.” 

“Because of the pandemic, small businesses are struggling. Providing training, networking and capital are great ways to give businesses a leg up during a tough time,” said Mayor Gavin Buckley. 

“We appreciate the City of Annapolis’ investment in this important initiative that aims to positively change outcomes for many minority, women and veteran owned businesses and other disadvantaged entrepreneurs in Anne Arundel County, “ said AAEDC CEO Ben Birge. “By leveraging city and county resources, we can support these businesses as they grow, create jobs and, ultimately, contribute to our tax base.”

The Inclusive Ventures Program (IVP) aims to “ assist small, minority, women and veteran entrepreneurs in Anne Arundel County with education, mentorship and access to capital. The goal is to help these businesses maximize opportunity, create jobs and grow our local and state economy.”

At the conclusion of the six-week program, now conducted virtually, the participants receive one-time grants of $5,000 to help them grow their business. The spring cohort will begin in mid-March. At least one Annapolis business,  MuralizeIt Interiors, has been included in the spring cohort of 12 Anne Arundel County businesses. 

"As the Chair of the City Council's Public Safety Committee, the public’s safety is best assured when our residents, among other areas of support, are meaningfully engaged in the enhancement of our professional and volunteer workforce, which definitely include intiatiating and strengthening our minority businesses,” said Ald. Rhonda Pindell Charles.

It is crucial that we invest in small/minority owned businesses. When small businesses win, our economy improves.” said Ald. Dajuan Gay. 

“This investment by the City of Annapolis helps to demonstrate our commitment to minority business development.  We’re excited to partner with Anne Arundel Economic Development on this initiative to facilitate a more inclusive business environment within our city and county,” said Stephen Rice, Annapolis Economic Development Manager. 

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