What do a spice maker, an Eastern Shore educator, a fusion company and a tennis star have in common?
They are among the best that Maryland's economy has to offer.
That was the message at a Baltimore luncheon yesterday as Gov. William Donald Schaefer and Maryland Economic Growth Associates Inc. presented this year's Maryland Awards for Economic Excellence to the winners in four categories:
* McCormick & Co. Inc. won the award for overall economic excellence. The Hunt Valley spice manufacturer was praised for the innovations of its founder, W. M. McCormick, who responded to the Great Depression by raising employees' wages, shortening the workweek and instituting profit-sharing. The 102-year-old company employs 7,000 people worldwide -- 1,800 in Maryland -- and had sales last year of $1.3 billion.
"I think all of us lament the fact that Maryland doesn't have as many headquartered companies as we'd like to, and many of us are working on that," Chairman Charles P. "Buzz" McCormick Jr. said. He said his company will stay in Maryland for at least another 100 years.
* Dr. Robert C. Schleiger, president of Chesapeake College in Queen Anne's County, won the Pate Award for excellence in business and academia. He worked to unite 27 educational facilities in five Eastern Shore counties into a federation of community colleges and training schools and has recruited businesses to the Eastern Shore to create jobs and on-site training for students.
* Fusion Systems Corp., a Rockville manufacturer of ultraviolet and microwave light systems for industry and research, won the first Maryland Manufacturer of the Year award. The 20-year-old company has more than 300 employees in England, Japan and Rockville and had sales last year of about $20 million.
* Pam Shriver, the Baltimore-born tennis star, was named Maryland Ambassador of the Year.