Changes to City's Public Markets Leadership

Mayor Rawlings-Blake Announces Changes to Boards of Directors and Management Teams for City's Public Markets

New appointments will oversee, continue to advance City's six public markets 

BALTIMORE, Md. (December 5, 2014)—Today, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake announced changes to the boards of directors and management teams that oversee Baltimore's six public markets, including historic Lexington Market. Kirby Fowler, president of the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore, will chair the board for both the Lexington Market, Inc. and Baltimore Public Markets Corporation (BPMC). Robert Thomas, former assistant general manager of Lexington Market, will serve as executive director for Lexington Market and BPMC.

"Kirby understands, from every perspective, the role our public markets play in the history and future of Baltimore's communities, and he shares my vision that the markets can better serve their customers," said Mayor Rawlings-Blake. "With Robert overseeing day-to-day operations, I am confident that we will continue to maintain and grow our public markets to support the evolving needs of the community."

Fowler is a long-serving member of both boards and has worked closely with the Mayor's Office and community partners to improve Lexington Market and the public markets located in surrounding neighborhoods. He succeeds former board chair Stephen M. Kraus, who serves as the Chief of the Bureau of Treasury Management in the City's Department of Finance. Stephen will continue to serve as Treasurer of Lexington Market, Inc.

"Baltimore's public markets are iconic, with histories that date back for generations," Fowler said. "They are a way of life and culture for our citizens. Today, people are rediscovering them and seeing their relevance, not just as food destinations, but as places where communities come together. I am honored to be tasked with building upon the excellent foundation laid by our former board chair, Steve Kraus, who worked tirelessly to plan for the future of the markets to help realize their full potential."

Prior to his appointment as executive director, Thomas operated the market for over 17 years. He brings architectural training and prior experience with Inner Harbor development projects to the position. Thomas takes the position of BPMC executive director following Casper Genco, who held the position for 12 years until his retirement in August.

"The markets are in better physical and fiscal condition today thanks to the leadership of my predecessor, Casper Genco, and the effective support of the board led by Steve Kraus," said Thomas. "Our current team and board will build on that foundation to broaden the markets' appeal on all levels."

The board is also joined by three new members:

  • Nayoung Louie, PhD—lecturer and researcher, The Johns Hopkins University Carey School of Business
  • John Pezzulla—director of retail assets, Bozzutto Management Compa
  • Renee Samuels—program manager, Chesapeake Partners

The following board members will continue their service:

  • Kaliope Parthemos—chief of staff, Office of Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake
  • James L. Hughes—chief enterprise and economic development officer and vice president, University of Maryland, Baltimore
  • Arnold Williams, CPA—accounting and consulting services director and founding partner, Abrams, Foster, Nole & Williams, P.A
  • Steve Kraus—director, Bureau of Treasury Management, Baltimore City Department of Finance; treasurer, Lexington Market, Inc.
  • Gregory A. French, CPA—treasurer, BPMC; partner, Mister, Burton & French, LLC
  • Joshua Neiman—principal, Hybrid Development Group, LLC       

Additionally, Stacey Pack, formerly of Belvedere Square, joins the management team as property manager for Lexington Market; and, Scott Garfield, formerly of Trout Daniel, LLC, will serve as business development manager for all of Baltimore City's active public markets.

In addition to Lexington Market, the oldest continually-operating public market in the country, Baltimore's public markets include: the Avenue Market, Broadway Market, Cross Street Market, Hollins Market, and Northeast Market.   

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