Skip to Main Content
Salisbury University BW
A Maryland University of National Distinction
navigation icon opens header SALISBURY UNIVERSITY

Shore Hatchery
navigation icon opens menu

Competition News

Competition Dates

Competition Date

Friday, October 26, 2018

Applications Accepted

Monday, August 27, 2018 - Monday, September 24, 2018

Competition Website

scontent: 1 bValue: -1 eValue:1

Related Links

Contact Information

Online Submissions

Photo Galleries


scontent: 1 bValue: -1 eValue:1

Spring Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery Winners Announced

5/16/2018 9:11:00 AM
Winners and Judges
Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery 10th-round winners, judges and supporters

SALISBURY, MD---On the outside, GOEFER’s electric power strip may look like many others on the market. Inside, however, it’s a more intelligent, economical, energy-saving product.

Michael Herod and Jarred Nicholls, founders of the Frederick, MD-based company, were the winners in the 10th round of Salisbury University’s Philip E. and Carole R. Ratcliffe Foundation Shore Hatchery entrepreneurship competition, taking home $30,000 with mentorship support from business leaders Chris Perdue and Patricia Royak.

The GOEFER strip monitors the electricity used by items plugged into it and limits unnecessary current. For example, a television connected to a regular wall outlet continues to use electricity whether it’s turned on or off. When plugged into the GOEFER product, the same television would use little or no electricity when turned off, as the smart technology inside the power strip would stop the current.

[Related Links]

Herod and Nicholls estimate that the average family has 65 items plugged in throughout its home, from large appliances to cell phone chargers. By limiting the current when those items are not in use, the GOEFER strip could save some $165 each year in wasted electricity, they said. Per annum, it may not sound like much. Over a lifetime, it equates to thousands of dollars in savings.

Plus it’s good for the environment.

“We believe sustainability isn’t a process or path, but a cultural mission, and we are on a mission to remove wasted electricity,” the founders said.

The spring 2018 Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery competition drew 17 entrants, with approximately half coming from off the Delmarva Peninsula. The event also saw its first two competitors from the Eastern Shore of Virginia. Judges awarded $98,000 in prize money. In addition to GOEFER, winners included:

•    Agrobotanicals, LLC, DBA Shea Radiance - $20,000: This Ellicott City, MD-based company, founded by Shola and Funlayo Alabi, manufactures natural hair and body care products using shea butter.

•    Blueblood, LLC - $20,000: Created by University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science graduate students Jill Arnold and Mary Larkin, with Dr. Brent Whitaker, managing director of the National Aquarium at Baltimore, this company plans to offer a reliable, high-quality source of horseshoe crab blood to the biomedical industry for Food and Drug Administration-mandated safety testing while promoting the conservation of wild horseshoe crabs.

•    The Athlete Academy - $15,000: This Salisbury-based fitness center and training facility, founded by recent SU graduate Cody Revel ’17, is a unique facility using scientifically proven information and technologies to serve young athletes from age 6 to adult.

•    Borrowed Pitch - $5,000: With a planned opening in 2019, this southern Delaware-based business, started by SU alumna Lindsay Richard ’11, will offer luxury camping rentals in partnership with Delaware State Parks.

•    Eastern Shore Academy of Cosmetology - $5,000: Owned by Doris Ebony Brown, this New Church, VA-based cosmetology and barbering school helps qualify students for state board licensure testing in Virginia, Maryland and Delaware.

•    Brow Boost - $3,000: 16-year-old high school senior Tania Speaks of Randallstown, MD, created this organic cosmetics line, with her mother, Tanika Craigs-Speaks, specializing in an eyebrow and beard gel made from aloe vera and vitamin E.

In addition to funding, winners and participants also receive mentoring support from the program’s board. Mentors include business leaders such as Mike Cottingham, president of Rommel Chesapeake, Inc.; Sandy Fitzgerald-Angello of Pohanka Automotive Group of Salisbury; Kathy Kiernan, member of SU’s Perdue School of Business Executive Advisory Council; David Landsberger; Chris Perdue of Perdue AgriBusiness; Patricia Royak, former chief operating officer of Marena Group, LLC; and Doug Wilson, managing principal of Private Wealth Partners, LLC, among others.

William Burke, SU director of entrepreneurship and executive director of economic development, noted this semester’s presentations were among the best he had seen. The judges concurred.

“The candidates are getting better every year,” said Dave Rommel, owner of Rommel Chesapeake, Inc. “The quality of the presentations is definitely improving, as well.”

“I wish we could give money to each and every single one of you,” added Fitzgerald-Angello during the announcement of winners.

Burke attributed much of that improvement to the 2017 opening of the Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Economic Development Hub in SU’s Perdue Hall and the local “entrepreneurship ecosystem.” Prior to competition day, business owners received training from John Hickman, director of the Small Business Development Center at SU; Bill Bernard, Lower Shore Mentor of the TEDCO Rural Business Innovation Initiative (RBI2); and Mike Thielke, director of F3 Tech and hotDesks, among others.

The Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery program was established in 2013 through a $1 million gift from the Philip E. and Carole R. Ratcliffe Foundation of Baltimore with a goal of providing $200,000 per year in funding for entrepreneurs in the Mid-Atlantic. A second $1 million gift, announced last year, will continue the program through at least 2023.

For more information call 410-546-4325 or visit the Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery website.


- Top -

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery Winners Announced

Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery Winners Announced

Dr. Memo Diriker, director of SU’s Business, Economic and Community Outreach
Network (BEACON), left, and Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery board member Mike
Cottingham, president and CEO of Rommel Holdings, right, congratulate Charles
White and Mike Boylan of PaverGuide on receiving $35,000 in funding from this
spring’s competition.

SALISBURY, MD---Members of Salisbury University’s Philip E. and Carole R. Ratcliffe Foundation Shore Hatchery board of directors spread the wealth — literally — during the fourth round of the semiannual competition.

Eight Maryland-based startup businesses, representing more than half of this semester’s 15 competitors, received funding from the initiative, established with a $1 million gift from the Ratcliffe Foundation in 2013 to assist entrepreneurs and help them create new jobs. Winners included:

•    PaverGuide - $35,000. Producing a lightweight, low-cost pervious paving system, this company hopes to help contractors save on construction labor and materials while providing a high-quality, low-maintenance alternative to traditional brick and stone pavers. Production is planned to take place in Hurlock, MD.

•    NUVU- $25,000. Creators of this app hope it will serve as a nightlife guide and social interaction tool for young adults while providing real-time analytics and advertising opportunities for bars and clubs.

•    Kitchology - $25,000. This app will provide substitution suggestions in recipes for diners seeking to lose weight or managing dietary restrictions.

•    Oasis Marinas - $20,000. Winning $30,000 in last fall’s Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery competition, this upscale marina management company returned this semester with a new idea: a “Snag a Slip” website that will allow boaters to reserve marina slips in advance online.

•    Gold Leaf Academy - $5,000. This accredited child care program and private school would serve children ages 6 weeks to 4 years.

•    Kanga Trash and Energy Systems - $5,000. Conceptualized by University of Maryland student Cody Branchaw, this company plans to produce under-seat garbage cans for stadiums and arenas, reducing the number of hours required to clean the facilities after events and decreasing the amount of electricity needed to keep the venues illuminated during cleaning periods.

•    Operation Precision Systems, LLC - $5,000. This company is developing a cloud-based drinking water quality monitoring and management service, with an eye toward expanding into air quality, ground quality and waste management monitoring.

•    IPPS Mentoring Program - $5,000. The first non-profit organization funded by the Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery, this Salisbury-based program provides mentoring services at the Wicomico County Detention Center in hopes of keeping inmates from returning once they have served their sentence. With the funding, IPPS board members plan to expand the initiative to the Poplar Hill Pre-Release Unit this summer.

In total, the Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery distributed some $125,000 this semester for a total of $200,000 this academic year. The fifth round of the competition is scheduled next fall, with some $200,000 in seed funding available.“The judges continue to be impressed with what they’re seeing each semester,” said William Burke, SU director of entrepreneurship competitions. “They had an especially tough time this round, and the number of prizes awarded reflects that.”

Administered through SU’s Franklin P. Perdue School of Business, the goal of the Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery program is to fund entrepreneurs in the mid-Atlantic and have new businesses opening within six months, with the potential of employing five or more within a year.

In addition to funding, winners and participants also receive mentoring support from the program’s board. Members include business leaders such as Jim Perdue of Perdue Farms, Dave Rommel and Mike Cottingham of Rommel Holdings, Frank Gunion of South Moon Under, Laura Baker of Draper Holdings, Jennifer Layton of Layton’s Chance Vineyards and Winery, Bruce Rogers of Sherwood of Salisbury, Katherine Kiernan of APPI Energy and Sandy Fitzgerald-Angello of Pohanka Automotive Group, among others.

This semester’s Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery competition was part of SU’s inaugural Entrepreneurship Week, which also featured the University’s annual student Entrepreneurship Competitions and, in connection with 47 ABC, a casting call for the ABC-TV hit series Shark Tank.

The next Ratcliffe Shore Hatchery submission period is August 17-September 21. For application materials and more information visit

- Top -

Need help or have questions about this page? Please visit our Ask a Question or Report a Problem page.
Salisbury University 1101 Camden Avenue Salisbury, MD 21801 410-543-6000