Serving the Southern Maryland Tri-County Area
Southern Maryland Minority Chamber of Commerce Foundation

Gov. Hogan Honors Maryland’s First 40 Certified Climate Change Professionals

Maryland becomes first state to formally co-endorse ACCO’s professional credential recognizing climate change competencies

Wednesday, January 29, 2020 — Annapolis, Maryland — Maryland Governor Larry Hogan today recognized 40 professionals as Maryland’s first Certified Climate Change Professionals®, an international credential administered by the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), during the meeting of the Board of Public Works.

The 40 professionals recognized today, mostly consisting of state agency and local government personnel, earned their certifications by participating in 6 days of training provided through the Maryland Climate Leadership Academy and satisfying the credentialing requirements, which included passing 4 exams and satisfying 14 hours of elective requirements.

In recognizing these professionals and future Maryland Climate Leadership Academy participants, the State of Maryland became the first American state to formally recognize the ACCO credential. “It is crucially important that policymakers invest in training their workforce to drive climate change initiatives in critical infrastructure, public services and agency operations,” said Daniel Kreeger, ACCO’s executive director. “Maryland is leading this charge and is also recognizing the professionals who are role models for these competencies. We hope that other US states will quickly follow Maryland’s lead in building a competent workforce equipped to reduce our emissions while ensuring our security, public health and economic vitality through a dynamically changing climate.”

The graduates were presented State of Maryland & ACCO co-endorsed certificates and honored by Gov. Hogan, Comptroller Peter Franchot, Treasurer Nancy Kopp and Maryland Department of Natural Resources Secretary Jeannie Riccio.

Statements from Maryland State Officials

  • “We are really proud of the Climate Leadership Academy,” said Governor Hogan. “It’s the nation’s first state-sponsored training institute.”
  • “Our goal is to equip leaders and Maryland’s workforce with the skills and knowledge needed to meet the challenges of climate change, flooding and severe weather,” Maryland Department of Natural Resources Secretary Jeannie Riccio said. “Thank you Governor, Madam Treasurer and Mr. Comptroller for recognizing the commitment and leadership of Maryland’s first class of Certified Climate Change Professionals.”
  • “One of the major reasons that [Charles County was recently] given a triple A bond rating by Standard & Poor’s was citing of their work in preparation for resilience, most particularly their strong participation in the [Maryland Climate Leadership] Academy,” said Maryland State Treasurer Nancy Kopp.

Read the full release at:

Rural Maryland Council (RMC) Upcoming Events – Register Today!

Save the date! Register now to join us 
for our upcoming events in early 2020.
Welcome Breakfast for Legislators
Friday, January 17, 2020
7:30 am – 10:00 am
Historic Inns of Annapolis, Calvert House
58 State Circle
Annapolis, Maryland 21401
Register to attend here.
Legislative Luncheon and Quarterly Executive 
Board Meeting 
Friday, January 31, 2020
12:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Miller Senate Building, Presidents Conference Center West
11 Bladen Street
Annapolis, Maryland 21401
Register to attend here.
Rural Maryland Day with Maryland Association 
of Soil Conservation Districts 
Tuesday, February 4, 2020
8:30 am – 12:00 pm
Miller Senate Building, Presidents Conference Center West
11 Bladen Street
Annapolis, Maryland 21401
Register to attend here.
For more information about these upcoming events, please
contact the RMC at 410-841-5772. 

RMC Hosts Welcome Breakfast for Legislators – January 17th

The Rural Maryland Council invites you to a Welcome Breakfast
on Friday, January 17, 2020, from 7:30 am to 10:00 am at
the Calvert House, 58 State Circle in Annapolis, Maryland.
The Breakfast will provide an opportunity for legislators to meet
with rural stakeholders to exchange ideas and information.
We look forward to connecting with you!
Register to attend here.
For more information or questions about the Welcome Breakfast, please contact the RMC at 410-841-5772.

SMMCOC Foundation Partners with BEACON

The Southern Maryland Minority Chamber of Commerce Foundation (SMMCOCF) will be
partnering with BEACON, the Business Economic and Community Outreach Network, of the
Franklin P. Perdue School of Business at Salisbury University
( to boost new business creation
activities in the rural areas of Maryland. The ultimate goal of this partnership is to help save and
create small business jobs in rural Maryland.

Under this partnership researchers from BEACON will develop a series of data-based “Key
Performance Indicators” and public policy option “Return on Investment” calculations that can
serve as leading indicators for small business/nonprofit job creation and retention outcomes in
the rural areas of Maryland.

This project was made possible through a MAERDAF grant awarded to SMMCOCF by the Rural
Maryland Council ( MAERDAF stands for Maryland Agricultural
Education and Rural Development Assistance Fund. MAERDAF offers important financial
support to rural-serving nonprofit organizations that promote statewide and regional planning,
economic and community development, and agricultural and forestry education efforts.
About the Southern Maryland Minority Chamber of Commerce:

The Southern Maryland Minority Chamber of Commerce, Inc. (SMMCOC), formerly The Southern
Maryland Black Chamber of Commerce, Inc. (SMBCC) exists to make the community a better place for

The SMMCOC is a proponent for business growth, as well as economic development and
empowerment. Our website is:

For more information, please contact Doris J. Cammack-Spencer,, 410-474-0772.

Please click here for full media release.