🎉 January 2021 Newsletter  🎉

"Change your life today. Don't gamble on the future, act now, without delay." - Simone de Beauvoir

Happy New Year to all of our members and colleagues!

Welcome to Bowie, Maryland
Welcome to the Greater Bowie Chamber of Commerce Newsletter and to our community, one of the best places in Maryland to live, work and raise a family.

The Greater Bowie Chamber of Commerce understands that in order to have a strong economic environment you must have a strong community. We are truly blessed in our community to have leaders, business owners, educators and citizens who realize that we all share in the responsibility of creating economic success and happiness within our community.

The Chamber’s goal is to work toward improving the quality of life for all through the support and commitment of its members, volunteers and committees. The Chamber is proud to sponsor events throughout the year to help support the community.

As the Executive Director, I am honored to work alongside our dedicated Board who all share the same vision, business growth and healthy community environment.

If you are not a member of the Greater Bowie Chamber of Commerce, please join us today. Your membership will benefit your business and the community. I look forward to working with everyone.

Be well,
Pauline K. Markward
Executive Director
COVID 19 Funding Webinar

Join us for an informational webinar on
PPP, EIDL, BGE Grant and the Restaurant Resilience Fund with
Mark Wells & Deidre Lee.

Wednesday, January 20, 2021
1:00 p.m.


Business Education & Resilience Webinar
Charles Motte
Senior Business Consultant, PMP, MBA

Thursday, January 21, 2021
5:00 - 6:00 p.m.

According to Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) they estimate that 66% of Americans lack financial literacy. One can infer, by improving financial literacy improves better decision making in business. The pandemic required us to adapt and pivot, having sound financial literacy as part of our business skill set helps us make those hard decisions. 
5 New Year’s resolutions every entrepreneur should make


At last, we’re headed into another new year! Most of us just want to forget 2020 and hope that 2021 fulfils the promises of economic recovery. January 1st is always seen as new opportunity and below, you will find 5 New Year’s resolutions that are perfect for entrepreneurs to start off the year on the right direction.

Consider your resolutions as goals to accomplish during 2021. Goal setting is an important exercise for everyone, but specially for founders: without goals, startups and teams would just drift along. 2020 was a year where it seemed that we just leaped from one crisis to another and that uncertainty just demotivated many of us. So, this time around, goal setting will allow you to be proactive, instead of just being reactive, and these New Year’s resolutions can help you steer your team and bring your business to the next level.

1. Improve your leadership

Although it seems a somewhat vague resolution, leadership is an ongoing learning process. 2021 will be a testing year for most startups and it will demand a lot from founders as leaders: new business challenges, conflicting personalities and evolving work habits and routine. With so many different ways to lead, the leadership style you use, will influence your startup’s culture and its ability to grow. Communication was one of the main issues in the last months, and it will continue to be one of the key tools for any leader in the coming year.

So, how can you improve your communication skills? How to better balance schedule requests, meeting and overall team agenda? Are you good enough at delegating and reporting? Can you practice on taking faster decisions and avoid procrastination?
Take a least one of these topics, and commit yourself to whatever you decide to improve in 2021. You’ll be amazed at how much farther you can go because of such decision. Become as inspiring leader, as this is the year to shake things up, get a little uncomfortable, and learn fresh new ways to lead your startup forward.

2. Practice creative problem-solving  

One of the keys to running a successful business is being as efficient as possible. And the best way to increase your efficiency is to be as lean as you can be when problem solving. If you encounter a problem it’s easy to have a mindset of: “if only I had a larger budget, this wouldn’t be a problem.” It might be the case, but most startups have to find creative problem-solving and it may take different approaches: building a culturally diverse team, or experimenting with sources of revenue, or finding ways take advantage of networks and partnerships.

Set yourself periodically objectives to assess your companies processes and procedures. You don’t have to identify as being a ‘creative’, just discipline yourself to look from a different perspective and test: proposing a new way for team collaboration; laying out a new process that will improve customer service; implementing a customer feedback; or just review old ideas and start a new project of your own, etc.

3.Learn something new

To be an ambitious entrepreneur, you’re told to be creative and think outside of the box. One of the best ways to do that is by expanding your perspectives: whether it’s attending a music class or taking an online course. Committing yourself to learn something will add to your skills and bring a new dimension of interest to your life. Besides being a useful strategy for achieving a healthy work-life balance, it will indirectly benefit your wellbeing and focus.
Try stepping outside of your daily routine and learn something that has nothing to do with your startup. Running an advertising agency? Try piano lessons. Have an e-commerce company? Learn how to speak a foreign language. Launching a new software? Why not signing up for cooking classes.

How will you find the time to learn something new? Delegation and planning. Depending on how you choose to learn, you may even meet new and interesting people, who may become customers, colleagues, or friends. Doing something completely different from your daily tasks will also force you to think in different ways, which can improve cognitive functioning and actually create new connections in the brain.

4.Take time to yourself and improve your health

You’re reading and thinking: the recurrent join a gym, get fitter, lose weight… why bother? It’s clear that entrepreneurship is a demanding path, that drains a lot from the founders physically and emotionally. So, it’s vital to look after yourself in order have strength and energy to lead. The reason that most fail is because we set the goal without increasing the capacity for self-discipline, which takes time to develop. Apparently, the problem is one of self-sabotage, so making a resolution to improve your health is a step in the right direction and slow progress is still progress. Be persistent and find motivation in coaches and groups.
Another objective you can set yourself is to read more. Remember that ‘reading’ isn’t just sitting with a book for three hours, as it also includes poems or news articles. Can’t get yourself to sit still for too long? Try audiobooks, or podcasts. And If you’re not into sports neither the reading type, there are many other activities you can start: yoga, meditation or writing a diary/journal.

5.Give Back

Giving back as a volunteer or mentor can be one the most gratifying things you can do. As part of a community, connect and reach out to someone who’s just starting and that can learn from your advices. You’ll be seen as both as generous and as a person people want to work with. Sharing a few hours to help others, will be satisfying and allow you to practice empathy and remember why you became an entrepreneur.

With the New Year just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about resolutions. As an entrepreneur, it’s time to make a commitment to the resolutions on this list.

Find the full article here.
COUNCIL CONVENES SPECIAL SESSION; RECEIVES BRIEFINGS ON COVID-19 VACCINE, BODY-WORN CAMERAS AND CARES ACT FUNDING; ADDRESSES PROPOSED CORRESPONDENCE AND LEGISLATION  

The Prince George’s County Council currently in December recess, convened virtually for a Special Session on Tuesday, December 15th. Council Chair Calvin S. Hawkins, II, says the mid-December meeting was necessary, as the ongoing public health emergency continues to impact the County. “COVID has changed how this Council operates, and December recess is no exception. This crisis continues to impact our residents, communities and businesses, and we are working to effectively respond to the County’s growing needs.”

The COVID-19 briefing focusing on the County’s vaccine distribution plan and health status, featured a presentation from Deputy CAO for Health, Human Services and Education, Dr. George Askew; County Health Officer, Dr. Ernest Carter; and Office of Emergency Management Director, Ronnie Gill. Following the presentation, which addressed vaccine availability, distribution, roll-out, and research management, presenters fielded a wide range of questions posed by Council Members expressing the concerns of County residents.

Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for Public Safety, Mark Magaw and Prince George’s County’s Interim Chief of Police, Hector Velez, presented during the second Council briefing on the County’s Body-Worn Camera program. The discussion included an update on the number of cameras to be distributed before the new year.

The final Special Session briefing addressed the status of the County's Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding, addressing the impacts of COVID-19 on County residents and communities. Prince George’s County’s Office of Management and Budget Director Stanley Earley provided a Coronavirus Relief Funding presentation focusing on County program, agency and municipality spending updates.

In legislative action on Tuesday, the Council supported a Proposed Joint Letterwith County Executive Angela Alsobrooks outlining the County’s State Legislative Priorities for the 2021 General Assembly Session, and CR-001-2021, legislation concerning the 2021-2022 Charter Review Commission and Compensation Review Board.
WATCH Tuesday’s Special Session.

COUNCIL CHAIR CALVIN S. HAWKINS, II ISSUES STATEMENT ON RESIGNATION OF PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION CHAIR DR. ALVIN THORNTON

The Prince George’s County Council is grateful for the service of Board of Education Chair, Dr. Alvin Thornton, who recently announced his retirement, effective in early January. His four-year term was set to expire in 2022. Dr. Thornton’s longstanding service to education in Prince George’s County has consistently focused on the shared interest of our students. We appreciate the leadership and partnership of Dr. Thornton, as we worked together to effectively advocate for the Blueprint for Maryland’s Future and increased state spending for education in the Maryland General Assembly. Additionally, under Dr. Thornton’s school board chairmanship, the historic Alternative Financing Construction (ACF) project, a first of its kind public-private partnership in Maryland and the nation, was advanced by the Board of Education. This innovative project will result in the construction of six new schools in our County and upgrade learning environments over four years. Dr. Thornton has served as an education leader in Prince George’s County many times over, and the Council honors his legendary leadership, institutional knowledge and expertise. Our County and its children and their families, are better for his service.  We wish him well and look forward to his continued partnership. The Council remains committed to working with the Board of Education and all stakeholders to provide a quality education for our children, and secure vital state funding for County schools.

PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY CLIMATE ACTION COMMISSION CONVENES

The Climate Action Commission, established by CR-007-2020, is charged with developing a Climate Action Plan for Prince George’s County to prepare for regional climate change impacts and set climate stabilization goals. The commission will review the 2012 Draft Plan and research best practices for greenhouse gas emission reductions, adaption, and resiliency at the federal, state and local levels; update the County’s greenhouse gas emissions inventory; and identify a plan of action for implementation of climate adaption. This sixteen-member Commission is scheduled to issue an interim report by January 31, 2021 and a final report by September 30, 2021.

The Prince George’s County Council continues to operate under the Governor’s “Proclamation and Declaration of State of Emergency and Existence of Catastrophic Health Emergency – COVID-19”, effective March 5, 2020, and amended November 25, 2020, and the Prince George’s County State of Emergency Declaration, effective March 16, 2020, and extended by the Governing Body of Prince George’s County with the adoption of CR-125-2020 on November 17, 2020. The Council’s Emergency Operations Procedures became effective pursuant to CR-10-2020, adopted on March 17, 2020, and amended pursuant to CR-35-2020, adopted on May 18, 2020. Rules of Procedure for the County Council and District Council have been amended, pursuant to CR-57-2020 and CR-58-2020, respectively, adopted on July 21, 2020, for virtual and remote public participation before each body.

COVID-19 Tele-Town Hall

Council Chair Calvin S. Hawkins, II, joined County Executive Angela Alsobrooks, County Health Officer Dr. Ernest Carter, and a wide range of County officials on Thursday, December 17th for a Community Update on County Government’s COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan. Tele-Town Hall participants were provided important information, and the opportunity to ask questions and express their concerns related to the vaccine.

Answers to Your Questions About the COVID-19 Vaccine in Prince George’s County

Do you have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine or the County’s distribution plan? Check out the County’s new web page devoted to COVID-19 vaccine information. Visit often for regular updates, new content, educational materials, graphics, videos, and information about vaccine distribution. To learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine; vaccine safety; and vaccine distribution in Prince George’s County, CLICK HERE. #ProudToBeProtected

COVID-19 Strategic Renewal Task Force 
Releases Initial Report

Connected DMV’s Strategic Renewal Task Force, which counts District 4 Council Member Todd M. Turner as a member, has released its summary report detailing initiatives to increase regional resiliency and enable equitable economic growth in the region post-pandemic. The Strategic Renewal Task Force is a collaboration of leaders and experts from the public and private sectors across Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia created to address COVID-19 recovery issues for the Washington D.C. area. To view the Strategic Renewal Task Force Report, CLICK HERE

Remember, Prince Georgians, simple actions have big results against COVID-19. Wash your hands frequently, wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth, and practice social distancing. Visit health.mypgc.us/coronavirus for the latest information.


Save the Date!
Your health matters to the Greater Bowie Chamber of Commerce. Over the next few weeks we will be practicing social distancing by limiting or reducing unessential meetings.

Sponsorship Opportunities Available

Contact the Chamber office at info@BowieChamber.org to secure your sponsorship today!
 
Unless otherwise noted above, register online www.BowieChamber.org

For additional information call 
301-262-0920 or email info@BowieChamber.org
 
72-Hour notice is required on cancellations
Kudos!

If your business has reached a milestone or received an award, please email the Chamber at info@bowiechamber.org. We look forward to giving kudos in Tradeline!
Chick-fil-A Marketplace Bowie presented 586 free sandwich offer cards to the Bowie Interfaith Food Pantry Emergency Fund! CFA donated one offer card for every mobile delivery they made in a two week period!
Get Your Flu Shot!
The flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses that infect the nose, throat, and sometimes the lungs. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Health officials tell us flu shots will be especially important as we move into flu season while still in the midst of the global pandemic. Flu shots are now available for County residents through the County Health Department’s upcoming free flu shot clinics. Adults with insurance are encouraged to get vaccinated by their primary care provider or at a local pharmacy. For more information and to make an appointment for the County’s free flu shot clinics, visit http://health.mypgc.us/flu

Committees

Business & Economic Development 
Promotes business development for chamber members through seminars and best practices. Works on attracting businesses to Greater Bowie.

Membership Development
Works on expanding the Chamber membership base as well as retaining existing members.

Corporate & Community Relations 
Provides opportunities to give back to the community, both in volunteer time and financial and in-kind contributions.

Legislative
Advocates on behalf of the Chamber before the City Council, County Council and General Assembly. Informs the Board and membership of pending issues before those bodies of interest to Greater Bowie businesses.

Women In Business 
To offer useful information and networking opportunities focused on helping women to successfully meet the challenges they face in today's business world and learn how to find and maintain balance within. Sponsor events to raise funds for the Women in Business scholarship fund.

Healthcare Committee
Promotes Chamber Healthcare related businesses to the community, healthcare related networking events, bringing healthcare providers together and holds community Health Fair.
Social Action

Peanut Butter Shelf

GBCC has adopted the Peanut Butter Shelf in the Bowie Interfaith Pantry. Each month the Bowie Food Pantry goes through approximately 350 jars of peanut butter. 

You can drop off your donation at the Chamber office or directly to the Bowie Food Pantry, located at 2614 Kenhill Drive, Suite 134. (GBCC Office is Suite 117.)



Bowie Business Journal
 
In conjunction with the GBCC, Bowie Business Journal (BBJ) is a cable television program designed to help Bowie business owners start and grow their business. The 30-minute show features GBCC members. If you would like to be a guest and showcase your business please email info@BowieChamber.org


New & Renewing Members

Widmann Financial Services

State Farm - Agency Recruiting

Doctors Community

J R Johnson, Inc

Ourisman Chevrolet of Bowie

Bormel Grice & Huyett, P.A.

Ourisman Hyundai of Bowie

Price George's Community Federal Credit Union
Thank you!
Greater Bowie Chamber of Commerce can't thank our members enough for all you do ... and of course, we would love to see even more NEW members, so everyone, please try to make it part of your mission to bring in at least one new member!

For more information, contact our Membership Committee leaders Ron Watson and Terry Rogers at membership@BowieChamber.org.