Angels Listen to Business Plans at Investors Meeting

Members of the Maryland Mountain Investors Group (MMAIG) once again gathered at Garrett College (GC) to consider requests for funding from Garrett County entrepreneurs who pitched their ideas for new products and businesses.

Mike Tumbarello, Coordinator of the Garrett Information Enterprise Center (GIEC) located at GC, organized this meeting, which was one in an ongoing series focused on economic growth in the county through business and job development. “MMAIG investors represent full-time and part-time Garrett County residents interested in helping Western Maryland grow. The goal is to enable company formation and job creation in the area,” he explained.

A dozen investors attended the meeting held on Saturday, Jan. 19, to hear presentations. Other MMAIG members, who were unable to attend, received summaries of these presentations. “We had over a half-dozen companies pitch a wide spectrum of concepts to the group. The business and product ideas offered included those in the fields of biotechnology, renewable wind energy, renewable biomass energy, destination entertainment, and information technology,” Tumbarello said.

Over the last several years, Angel Investor Groups have formed across the country with the goal of nurturing local economies. Last year, the Maryland Mountain Angel Group was launched with its first meeting at the GIEC coordinated by Tumbarello.

"Given that it was only our second meeting, I was very pleased with the quality and the diversity of the presentations to the angel investors," said MMAIG co-founder Andrew J. Sherman, a partner in the Washington, DC, law firm of Jones Day. Sherman is a long-time second home owner at Deep Creek Lake and has been engaged in various economic development activities to support the GEIC, Garrett County, and the region for over ten years. "I was also very encouraged by the attendance and active participation of the angel investors. We have over 20 angels attending meetings now and are making good progress towards our goal of reaching a 35 to 40 member critical mass. Our next meeting is on April 27th at 9am at Garrett College and we have been very grateful for the support of MMAIG by Garrett College since our inception."

MMAIG member Shane Grady, CPA with Boal and Associates and Garrett County resident, noted his dedication to the goals of the investor group. “As a small business owner myself, I can especially relate to the MMAIG’s efforts to ‘do well while doing good’ by investing in the dreams and models of local entrepreneurs.”

Tumbarello, who facilitates the meetings between presenters and MMAIG, helps to prepare the individuals to pitch their ideas. “It is very edifying to see that the entrepreneurial spirit is not just alive and well in Garrett County - it is thriving. We have so many creative, business-minded people who are focused on contributing to economic growth. With the generosity and commitment of the Angel Investors new business concepts can become realities,” Tumbarello said.

MMAIG continues to seek local individuals with a solid product or service concept, a strong business plan, and the opportunity to create jobs in Mountain Maryland, Tumbarello said, noting that the next presentation session is scheduled for April 27th

More information on MMAIG and programs offered at the GIEC through the Garrett College Continuing Education and Workforce Development Division is available by contacting Mike Tumbarello @ 301.387.3167 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   

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