ANNAPOLIS, MD—This week, Governor Wes Moore signed an executive order to promote Maryland’s economic future through the creation of the Maryland Economic Council. The council will be the command center for analysis and recommendations for the Moore-Miller Administration to effectively implement economic policies that achieve growth, diversify our workforce, and merge our state’s assets and growing industries.
“For too long, Maryland has underutilized its assets because it lacked a cohesive economic strategy. This council will change that,” said Gov. Wes Moore. “The Maryland Economic Council will help build the robust economic strategy our state needs and our state deserves. For the next decade to be Maryland’s decade, we must invest in the infrastructure, technology, and workforce to grow the industries that will dominate the next half century of the world economy.”
The council’s strategies will bolster the Moore-Miller administration’s goals to drive new investments in AI technology, help create jobs to achieve 100% clean energy by 2035, supercharge discovery in the quantum computing industry, and leverage Maryland’s cybersecurity assets to build on the growing cybersecurity workforce.
The principal function of the council is to provide economic policy advice and recommendations to the governor by:
- Identifying and tracking the underlying economic factors impacting the macroeconomic environment (such as interest rates, systematic risks in the banking system, disruptions to the global supply chain, gross domestic product, unemployment rates, and inflation).
- Analyzing the projected impacts of state policy issues such as tax policy and specific investment proposals, on the competitiveness of the state’s economy and strengthening key economic metrics.
- Evaluating the state’s current economic development policies and activities to identify additional techniques to foster greater economic and business development and support commerce.
- Examining existing economic policy instrumentalities, boards and commissions within the state (including, but not limited to, the Maryland Economic Development Corporation, Maryland Technology Development Corporation, and Maryland Economic Development Commission) and developing a plan to coordinate each entity’s distinct mandates and identify potential areas for collaboration to meet desired goals.
- Reviewing current economic policies through an equitable lens to ensure fairness and help eliminate the racial wealth gap.
Governor Moore has appointed Maryland native Will Castleberry as the chair of the Maryland Economic Council. Castleberry brings decades of experience to the position, as the most recent head of Netflix’s State Regulatory and Production Policy team. Previously, he served as Facebook’s Vice President of State Policy and Community Engagement and the Vice President of State Policy for AOL, Inc. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Maryland and an MBA from Johns Hopkins University’s Carey School of Business, where he has also served as an adjunct professor.
“Maryland has all the elements to be one of the world’s great economic centers,” said Maryland Economic Council Chair Will Castleberry. “Under Governor Moore’s leadership, this economic council will bring those elements together to chart a bright economic future for all Marylanders.”
The council will consist of the heads of the following officials of executive departments and agencies that the governor may designate:
- Lieutenant Governor Aruna Miller
- Maryland Department of Budget & Management Secretary Helene T. Grady
- Maryland Department of Commerce Secretary Kevin A. Anderson
The council will have no fewer than five and no more than fifteen members with training, knowledge, and experience in analyzing and interpreting economic data, developments and trends, appraising programs and activities of the government. The council will recommend economic policy in light of the international, national and state macroeconomic environment, and proposing strategies to build a more equitable economy.
The Maryland Economic Council will submit an annual report to Governor Moore on or before January 1, 2024, and by October 1 each year following. The annual report will outline the current economic conditions impacting the macroeconomic environment. The report will evaluate the macroeconomic environment’s impact on Maryland’s economy and will recommend courses of action consistent with the duties of the council.
The executive order was signed this week at Fearless in Baltimore. In 2009, the innovative company was created in owner Delali Dzirasa’s basement in Laurel, Maryland. In pursuit of the American Dream, the company has become the largest software developer and the largest black-owned business in the region. Fearless Tech focuses on creating tools and experiences that empower people and change lives, and supporting educational and workforce development initiatives throughout the state. The Moore-Miller administration is proud to have Fearless Tech alongside in this endeavor to bolster Maryland’s economy.