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Chesapeake Connect

About Chesapeake Connect

Chesapeake Connect is a program of the Baltimore Metropolitan Council (BMC), our region’s council of governments. BMC’s member jurisdictions include Baltimore City and Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford, Howard and Queen Anne's Counties. Chesapeake Connect brings leaders from in and around Baltimore together to explore and learn from a region outside of our own. During each trip, leaders from the Baltimore region have the opportunity to engage in dialogue with their counterparts from other regions. They explore solutions and exchange ideas for improving the Baltimore region and fostering positive community change.

Chesapeake Connect’s objectives are two-fold. First, the trip provides an insider’s perspective on the strengths and struggles of a peer metropolitan area.  Second, the experience is a forum for civic-minded leaders from the Baltimore region to strengthen and expand their own networks and relationships. 

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Chesapeake Connect Podcast

Because of the pandemic, last year’s program was put on hold.  Like everything else right now we had to find a way to run this program from home. For this year only, Chesapeake Connect will be a podcast, and we’re thrilled to announce that our host region will be Baltimore, Maryland.   

Launching on Monday, January 25, 2021, the Chesapeake Connect Podcast will pair members of BMC’s board with program alumni to explore issues and stories that shape life here in Baltimore. Produced by WYPR and hosted by “Midday’s” Tom Hall, this bi-weekly series is a chance to think about our own region in the same way that we’ve looked at Cleveland, New Orleans and Nashville.   

Episodes will feature discussions about regionalism and public/private collaboration, the role tourism plays in revitalizing Baltimore’s neighborhoods, how our partners are rising to the challenges of the pandemic, what the Preakness means for the entire region, and other salient topics.


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Episode 1: "What is Chesapeake Connect?"

Episode 1 features John A. Olszewski, Jr., Baltimore County Executive, and Scot Spencer, Associate Director of Local Policy, Annie E. Casey Foundation. Our guests reflect on their experience with the program and how the trip brings together regional leaders to take an unvarnished look at a peer region.

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Episode 2: "Leading in a Pandemic"

The second episode of The Chesapeake Connect Podcast features Maryland Senate President Bill Ferguson and Dr. Shanaysha Sauls, President and CEO of the Baltimore Community Foundation. In this episode, our guests explore the specific challenges of leading through a pandemic as well as the short and long term issues they're working to address on behalf of the Baltimore region.

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Episode 3: "Answering the Call: Modernizing Policing After the Death of George Floyd"

The third installment of The Chesapeake Connect Podcast features Baltimore County Executive John Olszewski, Jr. and Police Chief Melissa Hyatt. Join us as our guests discuss police reform in Baltimore County and efforts to improve community-based public safety.

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Episode 4: "Reimagining the Suburbs"

The fourth episode of The Chesapeake Connect Podcast features Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman and Greg Fitchitt, President for Columbia at the Howard Hughes Corporation. Join us as our guests discuss how land use priorities and real estate development are reshaping suburban communities across our region.

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Episode 5: "Making Regionalism Work"

The fifth episode of The Chesapeake Connect Podcast features Carroll County Commissioner Stephen Wantz and Don Fry, President & CEO of the Greater Baltimore Committee. Join our guests for a discussion of how public and private sector leaders are working together to promote a safe, connected and competitive region.

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Episode 6: "Keeping Pace in an Evolving Economy"

Howard County Executive Dr. Calvin Ball and Aaron Tomarchio, Senior Vice-President of Corporate Affairs at Tradepoint Atlantic, talk about how the Baltimore region is building a 21st century economy through the marriage of new technologies with blue collar history.

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Episode 7: "Supporting Communities In Need"

Queen Anne's County Commissioner Jim Moran and Franklyn Baker, President and CEO of the United Way of Central Maryland, talk about how government and nonprofit partners are working to support communities in need throughout the region.