Maryland Small Business Development Center Announces Interim Executive Director
COLLEGE PARK, MD – Lora Brown to serve as Interim Executive Director
Maryland SBDC is pleased to announce that Lora Brown, former SBDC Deputy Director, has been chosen to serve as Interim Executive Director, effective immediately, following the retirement of the organization's previous Executive Director, Paul Bardack, in September 2022.
As the Interim Executive Director, Brown will provide leadership to this statewide program that is comprised of more than 22 locations. She joined the Maryland SBDC in 1998 as a program coordinator and was later promoted to the Deputy Director position where she was responsible for providing oversight of the operations of the Network for 20 years.
Brown received her B.A. in English, cum laude, from Howard University, J.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and M.B.A. in Finance from New York University. Before joining the SBDC, she practiced law at the Community Legal Services in Philadelphia, PA, where she assisted low-income individuals with issues ranging from family law to Supplemental Security appeals and bankruptcy. While in business school, she began her pursuit of entrepreneurship development through the Urban Business Assistance Corporation by providing technical assistance to small businesses in New York City. Upon earning her M.B.A, Brown worked with Syndicated Communications, a venture capital firm that targets minority-owned media communications companies, and Media Communications Group, a specialty-lending group affiliated with Signet Bank. as an Investment Analyst.
During her tenure as Deputy Director, Brown led the Maryland SBDC Network to prepare the ASBDC Accreditation self-study and implement organizational improvements, which resulted in accreditation without conditions. She is active on America’s SBDC Accreditation Committee, where she and other State and Associate Directors conduct peer reviews of SBDC programs nationwide. The accreditation process, funded by the U S Small Business Administration and based on Baldrige standards of excellence, drives continuous improvement for SBDC programs across the country.
"I am fortunate to have the opportunity to lead the talented and dedicated team of professionals at the Maryland SBDC, excited about what lies ahead, and confident that we can work together with our partners to move the Maryland SBDC program forward," said Brown.
Brown will continue to serve as Interim Executive Director for the Maryland SBDC while the search for Executive Director is conducted.
Maryland Small Business Development Center Network is a partnership between the University of Maryland, College Park, and the U.S. Small Business Administration to facilitate management training and technical assistance to Maryland’s small businesses. For more information on the Maryland SBDC program and its services, please visit www.marylandsbdc.org.