Laura Neuman – Mary Pickersgill Award 2014

Laura Neuman (born February 3, 1965 in Baltimore) is a Republican sworn into office as the 8th Anne Arundel County Executive on February 22, 2013. Ms. Neuman, an Annapolis resident, brings her extensive business credentials as a CEO to county government. She has held positions with multiple companies, including T. Rowe Price, Digex, Global Payment Systems (previously National Data Corporation), and CAIS Internet. Her most notable achievement in business was to build a technology startup called Matrics from scratch, raise $17 million in venture capital and establish a successful company that eventually sold for $230 million.

Ms. Neuman’s business accomplishments did not come easy. She was able to convince Loyola University to enroll her in its master’s of business administration program without a high school diploma (she did earn a Graduate Educational Development certificate) or an undergraduate degree. She went on to earn her master’s degree in business in 2000, and later completed the executive program at Stanford Business School.

In 2006 Ms. Neuman was named interim executive director of the Chesapeake Innovation Center, a technology incubator for Anne Arundel County. She was named president and CEO of the Howard County Economic Development Authority, where she served until she was appointed by the Anne Arundel County Council to replace County Executive John R. Leopold. He resigned from office on February 1, 2013 after being found guilty of misconduct in office.

Among her numerous awards and recognitions are Most Influential Marylander, Top 100 Women in Maryland, Trailblazer by the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and Spirited Women of Baltimore, in Balance. Ms. Neuman, who herself experienced sexual violence as a teenager, helped bring her attacker to justice many years later and established the Laura Neuman Foundation, which empowers rape victims to act as their own advocates to get their cases resolved.