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Rural Maryland Council Honors Rural Community Advocates


PHOTO CAPTION: Doris Mason, Past Board Chair, Rural Maryland Council, presented Maryland Department of Budget Management Secretary David Brinkley with the 2016 Rural Champion Award.

Annapolis, MD – The Rural Maryland Council and its membership convened Monday, November 28, 2016 for its Annual and Executive Board Meeting at Quiet Waters Park, Blue Heron Center. In addition to providing an overview of upcoming events and activities for 2017, the Rural Maryland Council also held its annual Rural Impact Awards Ceremony to honor advocates for rural Maryland communities. This year, Maryland Department of Budget Management Secretary David Brinkley was honored with the 2016 Rural Champion Award for outstanding leadership and public service by working with individuals from all levels of Government, as well as for-profit and nonprofit organizations to effectively address solutions to benefit rural communities.

Secretary Brinkley has shown strong support for local agriculture and wineries during his time in the Maryland Senate. In 2011, he sponsored Senate Bill 821 to allow for special permits for wineries to sell at farmers markets in Frederick County. Secretary Brinkley also sponsored the Family Farm Preservation Act of 2012, and has been a supporter of the Rural Maryland Prosperity Investment Fund (RMPIF). Secretary Brinkley resides on a small farm in Frederick County.

In addition, Mr. Tom McLoughlin, Immediate Past Chair of the Rural Maryland Council Health Care Committee, was presented with the Outstanding Rural Community Involvement Award for his leadership, dedication, and noteworthy volunteer achievement to help improve rural communities. Immediate Past Chair of the Rural Maryland Council, Ms. Doris Mason, was presented with the Outstanding Rural Supporter Award for her dedication to service as Chair of the Council for 2016.

The Rural Maryland Council operates under the direction of a 40-member executive board in a nonpartisan and nondiscriminatory manner. It serves as the state’s federally designated rural development council and functions as a voice for rural Maryland, advocating for and helping rural communities and businesses across the state to flourish and to gain equity to its suburban and urban counterparts. The vision for RMC is the ultimate realization that residents in rural communities are achieving success in education and employment, have access to affordable, quality health care and other vital public services, and live in an environment where natural and cultural resources are being sustained for future generations.