Meet Mark Anthony Thomas, President & CEO of the Greater Baltimore Committee!
1. Do you have a hobby outside of work that helps you be a better leader?
I’m a big reader – though not of leadership books. I’m drawn to books about innovation and the process of disruption. Equally influential, I have a large library of poets from different cultures, including translated works. There are universal hopes we all share and challenges we face to overcome them.
2. What is something you can’t live without?
Music. In all forms. Baltimore has a well-known music scene and I’m really looking forward to seeing some of the local bands, DJs, and artists.
3. If you could have a meal with anyone, living or deceased, who would that be?
My grandparents. I was raised by deeply aspirational elders. The limitations society placed on them never discouraged them from encouraging my parents and their children to aim for greatness. I’d love to share with them how far we’ve made it.
4. Why Greater Baltimore?
As a child I wanted to build cities and I’ve loved economic development and civics as long as I can remember. A decade ago, I left the publishing field with a desire to become a CEO of a civic organization to truly shape issues of inclusive growth in a way that I believed life best prepared me to lead. The Greater Baltimore area, in general, is by far an amazing place. The culture, the people, the vibrancy of communities and academia make it a good place that people want to be.
With my predecessor’s retirement, I saw the chance to help shape the future here using the power of collective impact and public private partnerships. With covid, I also wanted to be closer to friends and family who live in Maryland. All together, it was a compelling opportunity to create the impact I’ve prepared my life to make.
5. What is something that motivates you each morning?
Being part of the solution in every way possible.
6. What activities or places are you excited to try in the Greater Baltimore region?
My favorite part of this work is engaging and educating people about ideas and policies or reforms. The national and global media have elevated broad awareness of our problems. I can’t wait for that same ecosystem to amplify the work we’ll do to address the challenges and position our communities (no matter what state they’re in) for success.
Over the next few weeks Mark, along with the Greater Baltimore Committee Board, will be developing a strategic plan for inclusive economic development and growth in the region. We are excited to move Greater Baltimore forward and upwards under Mark’s leadership.