New TEDCO Women’s Leadership Programs Empower Maryland Entrepreneurs BioBuzz

Alliance with HBCUs of Maryland offers promising, diverse and underrepresented women entrepreneurs a more equitable future

COLUMBIA, Md. (March 23, 2022)—TEDCO, Maryland’s economic engine for technology companies, today announced the launch of its new leadership programs for women entrepreneurs. The new programs are designed to build an alliance of diverse founders and CEOs to strategically navigate Maryland’s entrepreneurial innovation ecosystem. Working with Maryland’s four historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), TEDCO’s new programs will focus on building a diverse community of women entrepreneurs and helping them grow their businesses.

“Using input from TEDCO’s Task Force for Women Entrepreneurs to develop the foundation for the course, we were able to create a one-of-a-kind curriculum focused on alleviating the challenges that black women entrepreneurs face,” Linda Singh , Executive Director of TEDCO’s Women Entrepreneur Leadership.

The leadership program kicks off with a pilot program in Howard County at the Maryland Innovation Center (MIC). The Open Institute for Black Women Entrepreneur Excellence will bring together a cohort of 25 women entrepreneurs, with the goal of developing a network of peer-advisors and creating a collaborative community. HBCUs will determine the needs of these entrepreneurs at the intersection of research, technology transfer and education. HBCUs in Maryland include Bowie State University, Coppin State University, Morgan State University, and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

“Recent figures show the continued challenges faced by early-stage women entrepreneurs – 2.3% of venture capital funding went to women in 2020, up from a record high of 2.8% in 2019, but 42% of all businesses are owned by women,” said Troy LeMaile-Stovall, CEO of TEDCO. “TEDCO recognizes the need to ensure that all Marylanders, especially women, given that the state has the highest per capita rate of women-owned businesses, receive appropriate opportunities and exposure. to achieve their dreams. This pilot project with our friends in Howard County represents our commitment to make our dreams come true and access to opportunities for inclusion and wealth expansion realized.

To be eligible for the cohort, applicants must be a founder, co-founder, or CEO whose business is at least pre-seed to growth stage and at most pre-Series A. Watch the webinar to learn more about the program by visiting

The new program builds on TEDCO’s previous work as it strives to support women and underrepresented entrepreneurs.

In 2016, TEDCO commissioned a study of the demographics of start-ups seeking funding and support from TEDCO in an attempt to identify underserved entrepreneurs. As a result of this study, TEDCO launched the Minority Business Pre-Seed Fund, which eventually became the Builder Fund for start-ups led by entrepreneurs who are at an economic disadvantage.

In 2019, TEDCO went further by convening its Women Entrepreneurs Task Force. The 12 thought leaders in Maryland’s entrepreneurial ecosystem were tasked with identifying and implementing concrete actions to drive results for women entrepreneurs in the state. The task force ended with the recommendation to implement these programs in the state’s entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Learn more about the Women Entrepreneur Leadership Programs and view the call for applications by visiting the website at


TEDCO, the Maryland Technology Development Corporation, enhances the growth of economic empowerment by fostering an inclusive entrepreneurial innovation ecosystem. TEDCO identifies, invests in, and helps develop technology and life science companies in Maryland. Learn more at

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Tammi Thomas, Director of Marketing and Communications, TEDCO
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Mara R. Wilmoth