Equitech Tuesday #143: Resilience

Dear Baltimore,

It has been a week since the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsed. It will take us more time still to really fathom how this will impact our regional, state, city, and neighborhoods, but the last week has certainly reminded us about what makes Baltimore resilient – the strength of our community when we are woven together. We are #MarylandTough and #BaltimoreStrong and we will continue to gather.

It all starts here, locally and in our neighborhoods – like the opportunities for the community to co-invest in businesses via Opportunity Mainstreet on CrowdfundBaltimore.com. Support Irena Stein, owner of Alma Cocina and friend of UpSurge, in bringing to life Candela Arepa Bar as a new concept. These places become our future gathering spaces.

This weekend we saw our ecosystem come together to show up, show out, and grow with one another. Folks showed up at Social Innovation Lab at Johns Hopkins University to learn about Fundraising for Social Good from doers like Brittany Young from B-360, Lindsey Henley from Ignite Capital, Jamye Wooten from CLLCTIVLY, and Mac Conwell from Rarebreed Ventures – moderated by our friend Anthony Watters.

And then talk about coordination – the tech community made its way across the street to R. House Garage where Black Tech Saturdays celebrated Women’s History Month by creating an opportunity to gather and hear from the powerful Black Women leading our ecosystem: Ashley Williams from Clymb, Brittany Young (double appearance!), Crystal Berger from EBO, and Adeola Ajani from Fem Equity – moderated by the great LaToya Staten.

All this local activity ladders up to regional partnership work like the beginnings of the EDA Tech Hubs implementation plan that includes strengthening the foundation for coordination between our ESO (Entrepreneur Support Organizations) network. We look forward to talking more about this in detail at UpSurge Baltimore’s Annual Meeting on April 23rd during the State of the Tech Ecosystem presentation. A first for UpSurge, we look forward to multiplying the energy we’ve experienced at Equitech Tuesdays at the annual meeting and encourage the community to register quickly as we do expect to reach capacity. More info and link to register here.

And all this regional activity puts Baltimore on the map nationally and internationally. Our partners at World Trade Center Institute and Maryland Department of Commerce are excited to launch their corporate innovation accelerator this week, named the Maryland Innovation Lab. Spearheaded by L Marks, the UK’s premier corporate innovation specialist, the Lab’s inaugural group is honing in on sustainability and innovation within Maryland’s food sector. Nine pioneering startups from across the globe will present their innovative solutions to Sodexo, Pompeian, and SIMPLi. Join us in welcoming the founders as Equitech Tuesday goes global (April 2) at Guilford Hall as they arrive for their bootcamp and prepare for Pitch Day later this week (April 4). Take a few minutes to read about the startups.

See you at #Equitech Tuesday… where the tech community gathers.

Robbin Lee
Upsurge Baltimore, Director of Partnerships & Mobilization