Chesapeake Regional Tech Council
relocated its headquarters this month to a commercial building that it says will help it better reach its members.
The council left its space in the Anne Arundel Economic Development Corp., a county agency, to 839 Bestgate Road in Annapolis.
Chris Valerio, the council’s executive director, says the move was made to better reflect the council’s growing, regional membership and the fact that it is an independent agency and not a government entity. The council’s new office is located in one of its recent members, Annapolis Offices at Bestgate
, a flex-office facility. Flex space is a former industrial building that has been converted to office space.
The council has been situated in the county economic development office, a long-time sponsor, because it provided in-kind space and office help. “We have an independent board but there was confusion. People assumed we were a government entity,” Valerio says. “We are proud of that independent, entrepreneurial spirit.”
The council was founded in 1992 as the Anne Arundel High Technology Council. In 2008, the name was changed to Chesapeake Regional Tech Council because, at the time, 40 percent of its members were from outside Anne Arundel County.
Since then, half of its 280-company members are in Anne Arundel County or do business in the county, typically at the U.S. Army’s Fort Meade, and the other half are located in Baltimore County and City, Howard County, the Washington, D.C., area and the Eastern Shore.
Valerio, who runs the council with two full-time employees, says the move also allows her more mobility in meeting with member companies. They range from startups to large, established businesses. Most are in information technology rather than biotechnology, but members also include service providers like law firms and accountants. In the IT field, many are government contractors but there are also commercial firms.
Source: Chris Valerio, Chesapeake Regional Tech Council
Writer: Barbara Pash