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Interview with Greater Baltimore Committee

Brand Finance
15 May 2024
Mark Anthony Thomas
President & CEO,
Greater Baltimore

Baltimore ranks 47th in the Brand Finance US City Index, leaving room for growth. What key initiatives are you undertaking at the Greater Baltimore Committee (GBC) to improve perceptions of the city brand?

As a region, we have not intentionally collaborated to elevate our brand identity at least through the lens of economic opportunity and investment attraction. The city and the region are quite dynamic and culturally rich, without a dearth of great entrepreneurs, social innovators, and big ideas that are relevant to the broader ecosystem of news organizations, influencers, and decision makers. With the launch of our Regional Branding Initiative, we are setting the table to frame and amplify the overarching economic narrative and the many points of light contributing to the current momentum and efforts underway. There has been a long standing appetite for this type of initiative, so we have received tremendous support and I am excited about the impact.

GBC is an organization driven by the private sector. How do you reconcile competing perspectives and bring all partners to work together?

We are a coalition of the willing with more than 400 private sector partners. Last year we released a Multi-Year Agenda to elevate our regional economic opportunity and collaborate on other critical issues. There’s more shared interest that aligns us. Focusing on those interests is key, without taking on too much. The initiatives we prioritised are critical economic development goals that any successful community must do well in the current competitive landscape.

Your focus extends beyond the city proper into the surrounding metro area. How important is it to think about city brands in the context of their regions?

That is right! Our regional metropolitan area includes Baltimore City and the six surrounding counties. We sit next to Washington DC’s metro area and there is obviously connectivity between both regions. It is important for our region and industries and connectivity to coalesce around shared messaging and marketing, while advocating and championing investments that strengthen our regional job and economic performance.

About the Author

Brand Finance is the world’s leading independent brand valuation and strategy consultancy. Headquartered in the City of London, we are present in over 20 countries.

For almost 30 years we have helped companies and organisations of all types to connect their brands to the bottom line.