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So. Md. Business News Briefs

Southern Maryland Meats Wins MEDA Economic Development Marketing Award

HUGHESVILLE, Md—The Maryland Economic Development Association (MEDA) honored Southern Maryland Meats with an Economic Development Marketing Award at the 2014 MEDA Awards Ceremony on April 28, in Cambridge, Maryland. The annual award recognizes organizations that achieve significant results from an overall marketing initiative.

Southern Maryland Meats, a program of the Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission (SMADC), supports, educates and promotes the region’s meat producers. The initiative helps producers navigate the intricacies of regulation, transportation and infrastructure, public awareness and marketing to increase their income and meet the growing demand for local meats.

Southern Maryland Meats (SMM) worked with SMADC to develop a marketing campaign encompassing advertising, brand development, a meats guide, and a website. SMADC grant funds also provided freezer trailers to facilitate the transportation of processed frozen meats and retail freezer display cases to promote sales of SMM products directly to the public. Since the SMM initiative began, member farmers have reported significant increases in meat sales. In the program’s first year freezer trailers transported 51,000 pounds of product with an estimated retail value of $243,000.

SMADC’s strategic presence at ongoing events around the region has showcased the benefits of locally-raised meats. “Consumers are increasingly aware of the value of local food and farms. Southern Maryland Meats helped local farmers capitalize on this awareness, and market their products in a powerful way,” commented Pamela Ruff, Executive Director of MEDA.

SMADC Executive Director, Christine Bergmark and Donna Sasscer, Manager St. Mary’s County Government Agriculture and Seafood Division, received the MEDA 2014 Economic Development Marketing Award on behalf of the Southern Maryland Meats program. The awards ceremony, held in conjunction with the MEDA Conference, included a video clip featuring innovative campaign highlights. Conference attendees also sampled meats donated by SMM participant Earl Lumpkins of Part Green Hill Farm in Leonardtown, Maryland.

Since 1961, MEDA has operated as a nonprofit organization of economic development professionals, whose members promote the economic well-being of Maryland and work to improve the state’s business climate.

Chesapeake Urology Expands into Prince George's and Charles Counties

OWINGS MILLS, Md.—Chesapeake Urology Associates, P.A. announced that it has acquired Chiaramonte, Huisman and Zorn Urology (CHZ), LLC, with offices located in Prince George's and Charles Counties. This acquisition includes the practice's two offices located in Clinton and White Plains and the Fairview Urocenter. Doctors Robert M. Chiaramonte, Thomas K. Huisman and Burkhardt H. Zorn will join Chesapeake Urology and continue to care for patients in the existing Southern Maryland office locations.

"Through this acquisition, Chesapeake Urology continues its expansion throughout Maryland, and enables Chesapeake Urology to bring its integrated model of care to both Prince George's and Charles Counties," stated Sanford Siegel, M.D., president and CEO of Chesapeake Urology Associates. "Drs. Chiaramonte, Huisman and Zorn have been providing high quality urology services to patients in these areas for more than 20 years and we are proud to have them continue to do so as part of the Chesapeake Urology team."

Dr. Robert Chiaramonte is the founder of CHZ Urology. He has been in practice in Southern Maryland for over 20 years and is the Chief of Surgery at MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center. Dr. Chiaramonte is Board Certified by the American Board of Urology.

Dr. Thomas Huisman received his undergraduate degree from the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis and completed his internship and residency at the Naval Medical Center, San Diego, California where he also later served as the Chairman of the Urology Department. He is the Chief of Staff at MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center and previously served as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Urology at The Chicago Medical School, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, and University of California at San Diego Medical School. Dr. Huisman is Board Certified by the American Board of Urology.

Dr. Burkhardt Zorn received his undergraduate degree from the United States Military Academy in West Point, New York. Dr. Zorn received additional fellowship training in female and neurourology and has special interest in the treatment of BPH and prostate disorders, male and female incontinence and stone disease. Dr. Zorn is the Chief of Urology at MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center and previously served as Director of Female Urology and Urodynamics at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and as Assistant Professor of Urology at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland. He is Board Certified by the American Board of Urology.

Southern Maryland's Travel Leaders Returns from Invitation-Only 2014 International Summit in Istanbul, Turkey

GREAT MILLS, Md.—Dan Parker, the owner of the Travel Leaders franchise in Great Mills has returned from a journey to Istanbul, and western Turkey after having accepted an exclusive invitation to attend Travel Leaders' 15th Annual International Summit. Designed to effectively immerse Travel Leaders' travel agent experts into the local culture, the annual invite-only meeting convened at the 5-star Shangri-La Bosphorus, one of Istanbul's newest and most luxurious hotels, from April 4-6. This marks the fifth, International Summit Parker has attended.

Parker was among just 70 Travel Leaders from across the United States to accept the invitation to this extraordinary annual event.

"My experience is absolutely essential to that of our clients here in Southern Maryland by attending the International Summit, I can more easily advise clients from a position of expertise - I had the opportunity to work closely with representatives from Istanbul, who fully enveloped our group in every sense," Parker noted.

St. Charles Kicks Off Spring Home Sale Season with Best April New Home Sales in 18 Months

ST. CHARLES, Md.—The St. Charles Companies jump started the 2014 traditional spring home sales season with 25 sales contracts in April, marking the highest monthly sales since November 2012. The new home sales included single family and townhomes by top national homebuilders Lennar and Ryan Homes as well as Lennar’s active adult homes, Heritage. The amenity-rich, master-planned community is the top-selling new home community in Southern Maryland, with new townhomes priced from the $240’s and single family homes from the $300’s.

"April’s strong sales pace is being matched by extremely good traffic in the first week of May,” said St. Charles Companies President, Matthew M. Martin. “Homebuyers continue to select St. Charles for its amenities, schools, location and strong, family-oriented neighborhoods but they also value the long-term market stability of buying in a master-planned community.”

Abigail Francisco School of Classical Ballet Breaks Ground for New Studio

NORTH BEACH, Md.—Dance students in Southern Maryland will have enhanced opportunities available to them this fall. Abigail Francisco has broken ground for a larger studio and additional facilities at her school on 3rd Street in North Beach, and expects construction to be completed by the start of the new school year.

Francisco has been at work planning and designing the enlarging area for nearly three years, often consulting with a close friend who is a professional designer. Her desire to provide the best options for her dancers has extended the planning phase. “I am very excited to break ground! I have been waiting so long to begin this project for my students, and to see it all happening is a dream come true!”

When the construction is completed, the North Beach studio will have larger studios with suspended hardwood floors, chosen to reduce injury to dancers’ legs and feet, especially in jumps. The ceiling height will allow working with higher lifts in partnering. The increased space will accommodate larger group activities and more opportunities for presentations.

The dancers’ comforts are also being enhanced. A larger dressing room for the girls has been designed, as well as a separate dressing room for the male dancers. Francisco adds, “I hope to develop a program for special needs children in the near future, so our renovated facility is the first step in that direction.”

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