On June 2, over 50 community members and dignitaries gathered to honor Barbara Sieg for her 25 years of service restoring and protecting the historic Whipps Garden Park Cemetery.
The event began with an invocation given by the Rev. Gigie Sijera-Grant, First Evangelical Lutheran Church associate pastor followed by speakers and elected officials including community liaison Regina Clay representing County Executive Ken Ulman; Liz Bobo, state delegate for Legislative District 12B; Courtney Watson, County Council member; Terry Chaconas, special assistant to County Council member Courtney Watson; Amada Becker, Coalition to Protect Maryland Burial Sites; Georgia Eacker, University of Maryland Howard County Extension Master Gardeners; and Diane Butler, St. John's Community Association president.
To celebrate the event, County Executive Ken Ulman proclaimed June 2 Barbara Sieg Day and an herb garden was dedicated to Seig. In addition, Dan Whipps, a Whipps descendant, presented Sieg with a picture collage highlighting the herb garden and plantings.
The one-acre site was first purchased in the mid 1800's by the Whipps, family, a local family of blacksmiths, as a burial ground for their kin. By 1987, almost two hundred years of neglect and weather had taken a toll on the historic cemetery. It was almost unrecognizable over twenty years ago when Sieg, then the St. John's Community Association president, partnered with descendants of the Whipps family to start restoration efforts.
Under Seig's leadership, hundreds of volunteers gave their time and talents to restore the graveyard and enhance it with gardens including native and heritage plants, trees, and shrubs. Today, the site is owned and operated by the nonprofit group The Friends of Whipps Cemetery and Memorial Gardens Inc., complete with a board of directors that includes Whipps family and community members.
Thank you Barbara Seig for your dedication and loyalty to improve community. If you are interested in volunteering your time and talents to the Whipps Garden Park Cemetery (especially students who are on summer break) please call Aleta Gravelle at (410) 274-7795.
Dr. Kathleen Hetherington, Howard Community College president, gave the opening remarks at the school's Center for Entrepreneurial & Business Excellence (CEBE) spring 2012 entrepreneurial celebration recently. The event is a competition designed for HCC entrepreneurship students to publicly present their personal business plans to a panel of distinguished judges and compete for prizes.
Business Suites of Columbia, owned and operated by Ellicott City resident Mary Albert, served as one of the event title sponsors and prize donors.
"As a locally owned business, Business Suites of Columbia is committed to supporting the growth of Howard County business owners and entrepreneurs. That's why we were thrilled to be a sponsor of HCC's Spring Entrepreneurial Celebration that provides training and a venue for young entrepreneurs to realize their dreams," Albert explained.
Albert witnessed first-hand the enormous growth of Howard County businesses while growing up in Columbia during its early years. Her family shopped at local stores that often were owned by neighbors and friends. Albert's early appreciation for supporting local businesses was the impetus for starting her own Howard County firm.
Today, Albert's life has come full circle. She is raising three daughters with her husband, David, in the county where she grew up and operating Business Suites of Columbia where she continues her childhood passion for supporting local business. Her firm gives Howard County entrepreneurs and corporations the opportunity to use eighteen fully-furnished Class A executive offices and suites that allow the benefits of a full service office without the capital investment that a commercial space requires. In addition, the company offers conference room rentals with state-of-the-art technology and virtual offices.
It was no surprise to learn that several of Albert's current neighbors and friends are also customers. One of them is Robin J. Meredith, an executive with PAI Consulting, a government contracting firm.
"Our company is headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia. By utilizing Business Suites of Columbia, it allowed our company to expand our territory in the Washington, DC/Baltimore corridor and our pool of potential candidates," Meredith explained.
For more information about Business Suites of Columbia visit their website at http://www.businesssuitesofcolumbia.com. To learn more about HCC's Center for Entrepreneurial & Business Excellence visit their website at http://www.howardcc.edu.
The Howard County Arts Council (HCAC) is hosting a special reception in conjunction with the Columbia Festival of the Arts on Thursday, June 21. Located at the Howard County Center for the Arts from 6 – 8 p.m., the reception will feature performances by All County Improv and What Improv Group?!?!, gallery exhibits by HCAC's resident artists including a pairing of ceramicist Brenda Townsend-Kollman's raku vessels with abstract paintings by mixed-media artist Michael Spears. Light refreshments will be served. For more information on the Columbia Festival of the Arts, visit http://www.columbiafestival.com. To learn more about Howard County Arts Council programs and exhibits call 410-313-ARTS (2787) or go to http://www.hocoarts.org.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun