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Ratcliffe Foundation Shore Hatchery

20th Ratcliffe Foundation Shore Hatchery Entrepreneurship Competition Scheduled May 5

SALISBURY, MD---The 20th round of a 10-year, $2 million program to create new jobs takes place Friday, May 5, at Salisbury University’s Dave and Patsy Rommel Center for Entrepreneurship at SU Downtown as entrepreneurs vie for their share of up to $200,000 in business funding.

The Philip E. and Carole R. Ratcliffe Foundation Shore Hatchery program was established with an initial $1 million contribution in 2013. In 2017, the Ratcliffe Foundation announced a second $1 million gift to continue the Shore Hatchery through spring 2023. It is administered through SU’s Franklin P. Perdue School of Business.

Its goal: to fund entrepreneurs and have new businesses opening within six months, with the potential of employing three or more within three years.

Up to $200,000 annually is available for those applying for grants through the Shore Hatchery program. Its board of directors selects recipients based on exhibits and presentations to the program’s board of directors.

Through the initiative, applicants representing multiple geographic territories and business sectors pitch their business ideas to the board during a “Gull Cage” competition similar to the format used for ABC-TV’s Shark Tank. Each spring and fall, the program awards a share of $100,000 to business startups.

A public exhibition of applicants, featuring information about their submissions, is 2:30-3:30 p.m. at SU Downtown, adjacent to the Rommel Center. Winners are expected to be announced at approximately 4:30 p.m.

Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery board members include Jim Perdue of Perdue Farms; Dave Rommel and Mike Cottingham of Rommel Chesapeake, Inc.; Jennifer Layton of Layton’s Chance Vineyards and Winery; and Sandy Fitzgerald-Angello of Pohanka Automotive Group of Salisbury, among others.

Admission to the public exhibition and winner announcements is free, and the public is invited. For more information call 410-546-4325 or visit the Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery webpage.

Learn more about SU and opportunities to Make Tomorrow Yours at the SU website.