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FMA mission inspires deep commitment by members

Driven by a clear mission, core passion and determination to deliver real impact, the Fort Meade Alliance has attracted long-standing support from a wide array of organizations, companies and accomplished professionals since it was founded 20 years ago.

In total, 15 organizations and companies have been FMA members for at least 15 years: COPT Defense Properties, A.J. Properties, MacKenzie Commercial Real Estate Services, Capitol Technology University, Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation, Sandy Spring Bank, BWI Business Partnership, Northrop Grumman Information Systems Sector, Lockheed Martin Corporation, LG-TEK, UMBC Training Centers, Anne Arundel Community College, Baltimore-Washington Medical Center, Vision Technologies and Tower Federal Credit Union.

Jay Baldwin, one of FMA’s first presidents, said the organization’s mission was clear from the beginning: to support ongoing growth at Fort George G. Meade and make the Fort Meade region a steadily better place to work and live.

To execute that mission, FMA would have to be “a doing organization,” Baldwin said. “We were not just a meet-and-greet organization and we have never been a stagnant organization. We went from working on BRAC [Base Realignment and Closure] to focus on education, transportation, military and family affairs, and resiliency.”

That mission, advocacy and growth mindset have resonated with employers and individuals, and given them clear opportunities to make a difference, said Deon Viergutz, President of the FMA Foundation and former FMA president.

“When you look at the range of programs and initiatives by the Alliance – from providing snacks to wounded warriors to hosting military spouse job fairs to participating in Tech Mania, Project SCOPE and the development of the Kuhn Hall Education and Resiliency Center – it is easy for individuals to find a place where they feel like they belong in this movement and where they can have impact,” Viergutz said.

FMA’s variety of initiatives and its culture of “leave your badge at the door” has also enabled individuals from many industry sectors and career backgrounds to do satisfying work within FMA.

“One of the unique aspects of the Fort Meade Alliance is that it is not just DoD contractors,” Viergutz said. “All of our members can see from their particular vantage point how they are impacting the mission at Fort Meade whether they are a janitorial service company, a construction company or a healthcare organization. We are all equally important in the success of that mission.”

In addition to that service, FMA has also proven to be good for business.

FMA initiatives – such as the Key Leaders Series, Industry Day, Business in a Minute and Meade Business Connect – have helped members better understand mission needs and contracting practices at Fort Meade agencies and commands. It has helped members grow their companies, expand their networks and become favored members of contracting teams.

FMA’s mission and its membership have also benefited by the longstanding involvement of industry leaders.

“Our board members, are unbelievably successful in their own right and selflessly dedicated to the mission of the Fort Meade Alliance,” Viergutz said. “When you bring 30 leaders like that together, it is incredible what the FMA can accomplish.”