MHEC Secretary Recognized for Economic Development Contributions

The Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) Chair, Ian MacFarlane, announced that a long-time Maryland public servant of higher education, labor, and economic development recently received recognition for his ongoing commitment to improving the economic well-being of Marylanders.

MHEC Secretary Dr. James D. Fielder was recently inducted into the Maryland Economic Development Association (MEDA) Hall of Fame and is being honored for his countless contributions to economic development by advancing educational and business opportunities across the state.  

“I want to extend my sincere congratulations to Secretary Fielder for his induction into the MEDA Hall of Fame,” Governor Larry Hogan said. “Thank you Jim, for supporting and promoting economic development in the great State of Maryland.”

The MEDA Hall of Fame honors those who have made a significant contribution to the economic development profession in Maryland through their overall body of work in economic development, quality of service, impact on Maryland’s economy, and contributions to professional development.

“I join my colleagues on the Commission in congratulating Secretary Fielder on this well-deserved award," MacFarlane said. “This induction seems fitting for a man who has dedicated his life to bridging the gap between the private and public sector.”


Secretary Fielder has served four Maryland governors, lending his talents and expertise in numerous leadership capacities, including, Secretary of Higher Education,  Secretary of Appointments, Secretary of Labor, Licensing, and Regulations, and Acting Secretary for Business and Economic Development.


“Secretary Fielder has been a dedicated MEDA member for many years, including his tenure as President of the organization,” MEDA Executive Director Pam Ruff said.  “His commitment to economic development is evident in his continued involvement with MEDA and our members.  We are very proud to have inducted him into the MEDA Hall of Fame.”


The MEDA Awards were scheduled to be presented in May at the MEDA Annual Conference but, due to COVID-19, the event was postponed. However, during the virtual conference in September, award recipients were recognized.


“It was my pleasure to nominate Secretary Fielder for this prestigious MEDA Hall of Fame recognition,” said Renée M. Winsky, president and CEO of Leadership Maryland.  “I have known Jim for many years and observed firsthand the profound impact he has had on citizens and communities. Congratulations Jim. Your dedication, passion and service to the State of Maryland has transformed lives.”


To view Secretary Fielder’s award, go to​

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