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EDA Head Wants to Bring Tech, Capital to Howard County

Laura Neuman has long-term plans for economic development.

In his Thursday, County Executive Ken Ulman echoed the words of Economic Development Authority CEO Laura Neuman when he warned of successful communities becoming complacent.

In fact, Neuman said during an interview on And Then There’s That, a HoCoMojo podcast, “Our greatest risk is that we’ve done so well.”

and has since brought in her own hires in six positions in an effort to bring her “private-sector” approach to the organization.

She told HoCoMojo that the job has been “great fun,” and that although she sees herself returning to the private sector – where she was a successful equity-builder – she plans to remain at the EDA for the “foreseeable future.” 

“I can feel safe in saying that I will not be here for 17 years,” like former director , “But I certainly plan to stay here for the time being. I don’t have any plans for a change,” she said on the program. 

Neuman has said that Howard County shares a lot with Silicon Valley and that it should be a place where technology-oriented companies want to locate.

To that end Neuman has been working with the Howard County Nanotech Incubator and the Howard Tech Council to bring venture capital to the area.  

“If I was going to start a start-up tomorrow,” she told Patch, “I’d put it in Columbia.”

And who knows? Maybe one day, she will.

“I can tell you that I’m quite sure eventually, some day in the distant future, I’ll return to the private sector,” Neuman said on HoCoMoJo. “I like to make money, and if you’re going to work this hard you ought to be paid well for it.”

MG42 February 03, 2012 at 04:08 PM
A+ to Laura Neuman for being the CEO of the the EDA and not even knowing that it *is* a private sector organization! Can we please stop giving tax dollar funded grants to the EDA- they are a clueless and unnecessary organization.

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