The Work


Doing it all – and then some.

1. UpSurge Ecosystem work is about building not just the next great TECH city — other U.S. cities are focused in that direction — but the first Equitech city. This includes advancing culture, supporting and problem-solving for entrepreneurs, attracting investment, companies and talent, telling the Baltimore story around the world, and building or advocating for the pathways and policies needed to engage all interested Baltimoreans.

2. UpSurge Investments will invest directly in companies that build the Baltimore ecosystem. Our first partnership is with Techstars, the leading city ecosystem accelerator in the  world. Through the Techstars Equitech Accelerator, the STANLEY+Techstars Accelerator — and others — promising young startups will be selected from 1000s of applicants to live, work, play and grow in Baltimore. And we’ll use the Techstars megaphone to tell Baltimore’s story to an innovation community of more than 17,000 investors, entrepreneurs and thought leaders.


Founders & Companies

Our first priority is doing what it takes on behalf of Baltimore startups: launching, engaging, attracting, connecting, retaining, investing.

How we’re supporting companies’ successes:

  • Customer intros
  • Investor intros
  • Direct investment via Techstars
  • Founder coaching/curriculum
  • Peer networks
  • Mentors
  • Just-in-time support
  • Inclusive practices/resource sharing


Growing local capital and attracting outside capital into the ecosystem is key to being sure that companies have the funding to grow.

We’re looking across the country to educate and connect investors to opportunities in Baltimore.

  • Comprehensive data on local companies raising capital
  • Relationship development—local and national
  • Intelligent targeting of angel, venture, private equity, family office and other investors


Growing companies need a growing talent pool. We’re focused on attracting and retaining talent, and on building new talent pathways.

We’re developing approaches to grow from inside and outside Baltimore.

  • Contract with national search firm for recruitment
  • Talent clearinghouse
  • Engage with career teams at universities
  • Support talent development pathways
  • Target talent nomads

Collaboration & Connection

Building bridges within and across the local & national innovation world.

In Baltimore and across the country, we’re connecting startups, corporations, incubators, accelerators and funders.

  • UpSurge Teams build bridges and drive strategy
  • Working groups bring together ecosystem partners to build awareness and pursue opportunities
  • Intros for startups to corporate innovation teams as customers and advisors
  • Social networks for relationship building
  • Salons where founders connect with other edge thinkers—artists, writers, scientists, civic leaders

Storytelling & Marketing

We’re done being modest about our accomplishments: it’s time to tell the Baltimore innovation story to the world and to rally the country around Equitech.

We’re focused on narratives that create awareness and excitement, and shift the perception of Baltimore.

  • Baltimore as the nation’s first Equitech City
  • Local and national PR
  • Bank of success stories and proof points
  • Marketing engine for targeted outreach and lead generation
  • Distinct national identity

Pathways into tech

Capturing the brilliance of Baltimoreans requires working with youth and adults, offering the education, internships, certification programs and other trainings — a “tech-for-all” approach that responds to our city’s talent.

UpSurge aims at building out the clear pathways that Baltimoreans need, from youth to adulthood, to access the innovation economy.

  • Broader access to trainings for youth
  • A range of trainings and certification programs for adults
  • Shifts in hiring practices to welcome emerging talent
  • Internships and apprenticeships that introduce new skills

Supporting Efforts to “Prosper in Place”

We want to ensure that Baltimoreans advancing their trajectories through the knowledge economy are able to stay and invest in their neighborhoods.

Emerging technologies and robust policies will support efforts to ensure people can stay — and invest — in their own communities, lifting the trajectory of historically marginalized neighborhoods.

  • Robust advocacy for policies and programs
  • Powerful and efficient deployment of new technologies
  • Engagement of local communities to support identified challenges
  • Engagement of national experts to support the work
Join us!