Baltimore Green Currency Association, a non-profit program of Fusion Partnerships, Inc., was founded in Spring 2010. We are working to help create an alternative economy that will strengthen local businesses, create jobs, encourage the formation of local supply chains, and ultimately provide economic opportunity and increased resilience to communities underserved by traditional economic structures.
Our mission: to foster economic opportunity through the administration and expansion of an alternative currency, the BNote, for the communities of Baltimore.
As a 501(c)(3) non-profit under the fiscal sponsorship of Fusion Partnerships, all donations to Baltimore Green Currency Association are fully tax-deductible.
BGCA is seeking advisory board members for 2013. Baltimore residents with experience in community organizing, social justice, economics, or law are encouraged to Contact Us to learn more.
Meet our Board of Directors
Jeff Dicken, Chair, is a Baltimore native and a graduate of City College and Northwestern University. A big-picture idealist with a background in film production and IT systems development, he has always been interested in the dynamics of economic systems.
Michael B. Marks, Vice-Chair, is the Chief Development Officer and National Director of Research of Youth Advocate Programs, Inc., a nonprofit organization working with high-risk youth and their families in the United States. Michael is committed to giving back to his adopted city of Baltimore and to helping address racism as well as social and economic injustice. He sees the BNote as a tool to help disaffected youth become engaged in their communities..
Katie Igrec Lima, Secretary has worked with community and economic development organizations at the local and national level, and advocates for local living economies where people and place matter. Her work experience includes supporting microfinance in the United States, entrepreneurship in rural and urban areas, and empowering communities to become self-sufficient. She holds a BA in Sociology/Anthropology from Hiram College in Ohio and a MA in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago.
Julie Gouldener, Program Coordinator, is a mother, artist, teacher, baker, and community organizer with over 10 years of non-profit experience in organizing and communications work. She loves living in Baltimore and is deeply committed to creating a world where every person creates value for their community in a way that is beautiful and meaningful to them.
Jack Arnold is a Jack-of-all-trades: social worker by education, woodworker/carpenter by trade and green guru by profession. He is the founder of Bird River Design (sustainable design and construction) and Rebuilding the Earth from the Ground Up. Jack is very active in the Baltimore local economy, also serving on the planning committee of Baltimore Green Forum.
Alfred V. Griffin III is the father of two children and organizer for the Baltimore Film Festival International. He brings experiences in Fortune 500, small business, state government, and the nonprofit sectors, as well as a background working with community groups. Alfred believes the BNote is an innovative way to bring real change, and promote Baltimore businesses and the local economy.
Ian Patrick McDonald is a Baltimore native with a background in economics and psychology from Washington University in St. Louis and a keen interest in ideas and practices that promote ethical, fulfilling, and sustainable interactions between business, individuals, and institutions. He is an avid home (beer) brewer who organizes the Charitably Charmin’ ChiliBrew – DIY food events aimed at grassroots community building and cross-pollination of localized lifestyles.
Damien Nichols is a Maryland native living in Baltimore for the last few years and loving it. A graduate from the University of Maryland, College Park with a degree in Political Science and a background in grassroots activism, he has a passion for empowering global change on the local level. He believes the most obscene four-letter word in the English language is “debt,” and works tirelessly towards a socio-economic dynamic that respects the earth, nurtures life, and generates abundance for all.
Jason Taft is a McLuhanite, a Zeitgeist proponent, a diehard O’s fan, a Scottish Rite Freemason, and a Discordian pope and tsar. The founder of Angry Asthmatic Alcoholics, he led a pro-breathing movement that was instrumental in getting smoking eliminated from bars in Maryland. He likes dark comedies, guerrilla ontology, photographing cats, and reminiscing about his invincible Little League team that went 24-0.
Meet our Volunteers
We are indebted to our volunteers who participate on the planning committee, help us out at events and so much more!
Ian Schlakman is an accomplished professional dealing in social, economic & technological systems. He is the owner and manager of Civilization Systems LLC, an information technology, web development and digital/social media company based in Baltimore City. In addition to volunteering with BGCA, he actively serves on the boards of several non-profits including BLEWS (Black/Jewish Forum of Baltimore) and the Baltimore Time Bank.
Evelyn Wright is an ecological economist who is passionate about helping groups work together to solve problems and build community. She teaches at Franklin and Marshall College and studies climate change, energy policy, and local economic sustainability. Evelyn has been leading BGCA’s strategic planning process that is guiding BGCA to a strong foundation for long-term success.
Youssef Mahmoud is a computer guru, community activist, and happy husband. A native of central Pennsylvania, he adopted Baltimore as his hometown while studying programming and politics at the University of Maryland – Baltimore County (UMBC). His interests include public transit, open source software, IPAs, extra-planetary weather (did you know it rains methane on Titan?), universal human consciousness, and his dog.
Toni Lopes “I have met so many wonderful, ambitious and dedicated people over the past year working with the Baltimore Green Currency Association. I am honored and excited to be a part of the little piece of Baltimore history that has been created through the BNote. I hope to see our network grow even more with the BNote team’s inspiration and concern for the community, and hope to see our city become more unified and connected.”
Gabby Carroll “Working with Baltimore Green Currency Association has given me the opportunity to engage my community and participate in a grassroots movement that inspires community strength and builds local wealth.”
Jerry Raitzyk was born in Baltimore in 1942. He is a father of three, grandfather of four, and the The Director of Chesapeake Juggling Institute. He teaches Juggling and the Art of Meditation workshops.
Michael (Tew) Rigby is a transplant, originally from St. Helens in the UK, and a long time activist in the fields of hunger and poverty with a particular emphasis on innovative economic solutions. He is the former legislative director of RESULTS, responsible for micro-credit legislation in the US Congress 1987-89.
Robin Gunkel is a graduate of The Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics in Boulder, CO where she received her low-residency MFA in Creative Writing while living abroad in Japan. Robin currently works as a academic advisor at the University of Baltimore, and is also helping to spearhead Evolver Baltimore, an organization committed to social change through the expansion of consciousness.
Brice Lankford was raised on a horse farm in northern Maryland. He attended college in Florida and studied anthropology and education at Florida Gulf Coast University. He has wrestled an alligator and lived to tell the tale, and can fix anything. He is ready to see a scoundrel-free valuation system for Baltimore, and real economic progress for all its residents.