BALTIMORE, MD (June 15, 2018) – Major Gene Hogg provides keynote address at BGE’s Energizing Business Growth Breakfast (Photo by: Donovan Eaton)

Back in 1816, ​BGE (Baltimore Gas & Electric Company) became the first gas utility in the United States when Rembrandt Peale lit the first gas lamp in Baltimore. 75 years later, Salvation Army founder William Booth changed the match making industry in 1891, by switching to red phosphorus, instead of the previously used white phosphorus, ultimately providing a cleaner and healthier work environment for factory workers.

In 2018, BGE partnered with The Salvation Army and helped strike the match to change the grocery industry with DMG Foods.

DMG Foods is The Salvation Army’s first non-profit grocery store. This store aims to provide an affordable place for the local community to purchase fresh and healthy food while expanding their cash and food stamp dollars through nutrition and shopping education, social services, and complimentary supplemental food items.

BGE’s Chief Executive Officer, Calvin Butler, extended an invitation to Central Maryland Area Commander Major Gene Hogg as the keynote speaker at BGE’s Energizing Business Growth Breakfast last week. More than 150 people tuned in to Central Maryland Area Commander Major Gene Hogg’s keynote address at BGE’s Energizing Business Growth Breakfast, highlighting The Salvation Army’s partnership with BGE.

Through BGE’s Smart Energy Economic Development (SEED) program, DMG Foods received economic development incentives in the form of reduced billing and using energy more efficiently. Additionally, DMG Foods’ service fees were reduced by 75%, as well as a 25% reduction on electric and natural gas distribution for the next five years.

Effective lighting supports the grocery store in a variety of ways, including improving retails sales and maintaining the quality of fresh and frozen inventory.

Other speakers at the business breakfast included BGE Regulatory and External Affairs Senior Vice President, Alexander Núñez, who was also one of the notable speakers at the DMG Foods grand opening on March 7.

“Every year, we find non-profits that align with our values and the needs of our customers. This year, our cause initiative was to help The Salvation Army to innovate DMG Foods because it was in a food desert. DMG Foods is not just a grocery store, but a true salvation for people in the community,” said Núñez.

As defined by Baltimore City, a food desert or “healthy food priority area” is located more than ¼ mile away from other supermarkets.

According to a recent study at the Tulane School of Social Work, 2.3 million Americans lived more than one mile away from a supermarket and did not own a car. These individuals have limited access to healthy food and often resorting to getting groceries from convenience stores. The study also showed that residents living in food desert areas have a positive correlation with poor-quality diets, diabetes, and weight gain.

Research shows that the potential economic impact of a new grocery store in a food desert includes creating jobs, increasing local income, and improves the residential and commercial real estate. Since opening its doors just three months prior, DMG Foods has opened 15 permanent jobs and provided affordable, healthy food products to more than 2,000 customers.

BGE’s economic incentives has supported more 37,500 businesses throughout Maryland, including DMG Foods.

“On behalf of the thousands of people that are benefiting from the DMG Foods grocery store, I’m only one, but I stand here to say thank you to BGE for making healing possible in our community,” said Major Hogg.


Media Contact:
Major Gene A. Hogg
Central Maryland Area Commander


Salvation Army personnel prepare to provide disaster relief services for Hurricane Harvey survivors and rescue workers.

BALTIMORE, MD (August 29, 2017) — A team of Salvation Army personnel from central Maryland is preparing to station in Texas to help the people affected by Hurricane Harvey. The Salvation Army has committed 59 mobile feeding units (canteens) for Texas, which are used for rapid and free-standing response in times of emergency. To date, The Salvation Army has provided over 6,000 meals to Hurricane Harvey survivors and rescue workers.

“The Salvation Army has activated all of its US and Canadian emergency disaster response assets. These units are able to provide food, shelter, and emotional and spiritual care to those impacted by this ongoing devastating weather event,” said Major C. Mark Brown, Director of Business Operations for The Salvation Army Texas Division.

In times of disaster, The Salvation Army traditionally serves and prepares meals from its mobile canteens, helps distribute cleaning supplies, and offers comfort to those impacted. Due to the size of the population impacted by Hurricane Harvey, The Salvation Army’s Emergency Disaster Services Team anticipates for this to be the largest and longest emergency response in the history of The Salvation Army in America.

“We are implementing plans to be there for as long as it takes,” said Charles Nutt, Divisional Development Director of The Salvation Army of Central Maryland.

To support The Salvation Army’s disaster relief efforts for Hurricane Harvey, call 1-800-SAL-ARMY, text STORM to 51555, or give online at Donations may also be sent by mail to The Salvation Army, PO Box 1959, Atlanta, GA 30301. Please designate “Hurricane Harvey” on all checks.


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About The Salvation Army of Central Maryland

The Salvation Army, an evangelical part of the universal Christian church established in Maryland in 1885, has been supporting those in need in His name without discrimination for more than 150 years. Nearly one hundred thousand Marylanders receive assistance from The Salvation Army each year through a range of social services: providing food for the hungry, relief for disaster victims, clothing, and shelter to the homeless, and after-school programs for underprivileged children through its partnership with The Boys and Girls Club of America. Eighty-two cents of every dollar The Salvation Army spends is used to support those services in Maryland.

BALTIMORE, MD Catherine’s Cottage residents often visit the prayer garden in search of peace and comfort.

Since the grand opening in May 2017, The Salvation Army of Central Maryland’s Catherine’s Cottage has served as a safe place for human trafficking survivors to call home in Baltimore. One of the main characteristics of the home that provides the residents with security, is the prayer garden.

Human trafficking survivor “Hailey” recently came to Catherine’s Cottage for services. Despite having her reservations about entering the program, “Hailey” found Catherine’s Cottage to be a peaceful environment. She was eager to escape her situation and begin her path to restoration.

To prevent the transfer of bed bugs, each resident is asked to wash their clothes upon admission into the program. While “Hailey” was in the basement doing her laundry, staff noticed that she was gone for an extended period of time.

Fearing that she might have run away, staff members went to check on her, only to find “Hailey” crying in the prayer garden. Ever since, the garden has served as a comforting space for “Hailey”.

“It’s so peaceful over there,” said “Hailey” about the backyard.

According to Anti-Trafficking Program Director Shamere McKenzie, other residents at Catherine’s Cottage find solace in the prayer garden as well.

While preparing for therapy, Catherine’s Cottage resident “Ms. Jay” had an emotional breakdown after recalling the traumatic slaying of her best friend. Growing inconsolable, Ms. Jay visited the prayer garden, where she became more serene and relaxed.

When asked why the site might be such a common place of comfort for the residents, Shamere replied “I believe it’s because it’s the only place in the house that has no connection to a trafficking experience. It’s just nature.”

“Hailey” now meditates in the backyard every day. She has found the garden to be a comfortable place for her to release her emotions. So much so, that when the  flowers recently wilted, “Hailey” informed staff that she intends to re-plant new flowers herself.

BALTIMORE, MD Lt. Melvin and Kimberly Harvey serve 80-120 people a day through their meal center at Temple Corps.

Temple Corps, located at 1601 W. Baltimore St, Baltimore, MD 21223, provides services for some of the most impoverished neighborhoods in Central Maryland Area Command. To help address the communities’ need, Salvation Army officers Lt. Melvin and Kimberly Harvey make sure no one leaves their corps hungry or hopeless.

Temple Corps clients often sought food assistance. Since the site did not have a food pantry, feeding options for the clients were limited. That was until Lt. Melvin and Kimberly Harvey opened their meal center at the corps in March 2017.

Commonly known as Cornbread Café, the Salvation Army eatery serves 80-120 people every Thursday, from 1:00pm-4:00pm. The lieutenants, along with their church members, serve every customer a meal, refreshments, and dessert. “We want them to feel welcome,” said Lt. Kimberly.

The lieutenants make it a point to remember every customer’s name and serve them with integrity and southern hospitality.

Many clients at Temple Corps are in between jobs, lack permanent housing, or struggle with alcohol or drug addiction. Recognizing that this vulnerable demographic may also need spiritual care, Lt. Melvin and Kimberly Harvey accept prayer requests from the café’s customers upon sign-in.

“Many of the [clients] have gotten off track. I think it’s important for them to know that no matter how you messed up, or no matter how you slipped, God still loves you and he has not forgotten about you,” said Lt. Kimberly.

Since opening their meal center, the lieutenants have seen an increase in their congregation. Even more so, the lieutenants are adamant that no one gets turned away from Temple Corps.

One Sunday morning, an intoxicated gentleman came to the church at Temple Corps for worship. Assuming he would not be welcome in the church, he stood by the back door. Until, Lt. Kimberly Harvey invited him to sit and assured him that despite his condition, he would still receive the word.

“That’s why I fell in love with The Salvation Army. I’ve been to regular churches that will turn people away but in a Salvation Army church, you come as you are,” said Lt. Kimberly.


DMG Foods Concept

DMG Foods, named after The Salvation Army motto Doing The Most Good, will be a 7,000 sq. ft. non-profit grocery store that will provide healthy and affordable food in east Baltimore for families and individuals already receiving SNAP benefits. This non-profit grocery store will be the first of its kind in The Salvation Army and one of just a handful of non-profit grocery stores anywhere in the United States.

According to US Department of Agriculture, in 2014 the average Maryland resident receiving SNAP benefits receives $119.89 per person, per month—which is less than $4 a day. The goal of DMG Foods is to double the amount of food that clients can purchase with SNAP benefits.

The Salvation Army of Central Maryland partnered with the Maryland Food Bank to provide the majority of the store inventory and reached out to local farmers and suppliers for fresh products.

DMG Foods will also provide a 5-week workforce development program for citizens seeking employment. After providing these individuals with training and hands-on food retail experience, a case manager will assist them with job placement in Baltimore City. Ultimately, DMG Foods will not only provide affordable groceries but will give these local residents an opportunity to develop new skills and gain work experience, which in turn will improve their financial welfare and instill a sense of pride and self-worth.

DMG Foods is expected to open January 2018.

To learn more information about DMG Foods, please visit