By Sonny Morstein
In 1990, Baltimore, like older cities, was going through a difficult time as Federal grant money for neighborhoods and commercial districts had just about disappeared. The City was losing 1000 residents a month. It was then that a group of business leaders with the urging of City Councilman Tony Ambridge and Governor Schaeffer decided the City needed "a Cheer Leader" for the small and medium sized business community. The logical choice was to activate the Baltimore City Chamber of Commerce. At the time, before the chamber was officially organized, it was just one of the many committees of the Greater Baltimore Committee. It was not really a functioning entity. The time was right to move from a committee to become a chamber and separate from the G.B.C. and function independently with its own Board and membership.
In spite of being told Baltimore would not support another business group, we went forward. It is worth mentioning two business leaders who were instrumental in forming the working group and bringing the chamber to fruition. One was Fletcher Hall, Executive Vice President Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors and Edwin Warfield, Publisher of the Daily record. In 1991, we were up and running and 21 years later we are still in the business of assisting business owners in achieving greater success.