Jim Mingey – Project Opportunity Class of 2011 (Eastern Shore) – Founder of Veterans Business Services. Jim is a former Combat Veteran who was previously employed in Washington DC helping Veterans reach for their dreams in small business. He had good experience in franchising but had lost his job due to cutbacks in funding and came to DLLR in 2011 seeking to re-employ his skills and help Veterans in small business at the same time and was referred to Project Opportunity. After graduation in November 2011, he was then supported by the Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs for a Service Disabled Veteran loan for his planned self-employment in Maryland. He was also then selected to participate in the Entrepreneurial Bootcamp for Veterans with Disability (EBV) a prestigious Veteran Mentoring Program supported by Walmart which also supports Project Opportunity here on the Eastern Shore.
Project Opportunity advised Jim on how to reach out to a variety of State support agencies to obtain financial commitments including one from Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED). Project Opportunity also led to an SBA micro-Loan from Maryland Capital Enterprises (MCE). Collectively this funding and his business plan led to TEDCO which now has provided him funding for his Veteran owned business and a contract for services via TEDCO’s new Veterans Opportunity Fund. Jim has now received the funding and the business is expected to provide him an income of at least $50,000 annually. And over time he is expected to grow his new opportunity through the quality services he will provide to TEDCO and other Veteran owned businesses. He is also expected to employ other Veterans and be an asset to economic development on the Eastern Shore and the State of Maryland.
Steve Hall – Project Opportunity Class of 2010 (Eastern Shore) – Owner of Eastern Shore Investigators, a private investigation firm located in Salisbury, MD that was started in October 2010. Currently operating on a part time basis with annual revenue around $ 8 to $10K. Has four part time employees, three of which are also veterans. Business continues to grow and he plans to expand once he retires from current employment
Pamela Grinnell – Project Opportunity Class of 2011 (Eastern Shore) – Owner of Cater to You Assisted Living Facility, LLC located in Chestertown, MD. Received operating license from State of Maryland Dept of Health and Mental Hygiene for 4 bed facility on July 16, 2013. Plans to provide living assistance to veterans, working with Maryland Department of Veterans Affairs. Actual opening date hinges on being able to secure financing.
Gail Schnell – Project Opportunity Class of 2011 (Eastern Shore) – Gail Schnell is a US Army Operation Enduring Freedom veteran. She is Security+ and CISSP certified, meeting 8570 compliance. She graduated from Project Opportunity and V-Wise in 2011. Then she created Schnell-Tech Solutions LLC, an IT Consulting and Contracting company. It is Woman-owned, Minority-owned, and Veteran-Owned. In 2012, she was the recipient of the Rising Star Honoree Award at the Woman Veterans Rock Rally in Washington, DC. Gail and her company mentored middle school girls in Cybersecurity ( http://womenscyberjutsu.com/archives/4406 ). Schnell-Tech Solutions LLC and Gail was featured in an article for APG called “Vet business owners network, share lessons” (http://www.army.mil/article/91882/Vet_business_owners_network_share_lessons/).
Gail was selected for a Fellowship through The Mission Continues and F7, where we cleaned and improved the San Diego River Garden and then took our Oath as veterans pledging to improve our communities. She worked on service projects that assisted other veterans and her community. During her fellowship, she organized a renovation of The American Legion as well as a Career & Resource Fair for Veterans. In 2013, she was selected as a Women Veteran Entrepreneur Corps Pitch Winner ( http://www.countmein.org/Count-Me-Ins-Women-Veteran-Entrepreneur-Corps-Pitch-Winners). Gail was selected for the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans (EBV) Program at Syracuse University. She was also a panelist and was honored at the Woman Veterans Summer Retreat during the “Leaders & Legends Luncheon”.
Ernie Adkins – Project Opportunity Class of 2010 (Eastern Shore) – Owner of Triple E Kennels (www.tripleekennels.net), located in Mardela Springs, Maryland. Purchased farm, a little over 10 acres, in 2011, in order to better facilitate the expansion of our K9 programs. Annual revenue is between 30 to 40K.
We have only one goal, guarantee satisfaction to everyone for many years to come by supplying top of the line Belgian Malinois. We are a family owned and operated kennel. We began our breeding program in 2008 and everyone who has received a puppy from us has been very satisfied. We ship anywhere worldwide. All of our Malinois are on site and available for you to meet at any time.
For those interested in why we chose the Belgian Malinois over other breeds, the answer is simple. I worked closely with the Malinois while overseas. I was quite impressed with the breed’s overall abilities in protection and odor detection. Its eagerness and commitment to work is unprecedented. These facts, coupled with exceptional health, are exactly why the Belgian Malinois was the only choice. Others see the quality in this breed as well. Quite a few police departments, on local and state levels, feel the same way. In fact, the United States Secret Service uses the Belgian Malinois exclusively.
As for our puppies, all of our puppies are raised on site, with both parents on the premises. All will be delivered healthy, exposed to children on a daily basis, foundation work in environmental training (this builds a solid, confident puppy), de-wormed, and vaccinated.
James Gardner – Project Opportunity Class of 2010 (Eastern Shore) – Owner of Eye on The Sparrow Global, Athletic Apparel Company. In process of applying for State of Maryland Minority Business Enterprise Certification. Recently awarded contract to provide uniforms and warm ups for North Caroline High School Basketball Team. Has hired three sales representatives, one each in Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia, two of which are fellow veterans. Annual revenue between $3 to 5K while operating business part time.
James Tingle – Project Opportunity Class of 2011 (Eastern Shore) – Owner of Tingle Services LLC, a lawn maintenance and power washing company. James operates his business on a part time seasonal basis until he can retire from the Postal Service. He has revenue of approximately $9,000 to $11,000 per year from both operations. Is in the process of applying for MBE Certification from the State of Maryland.