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R. Michael Gill
R. Michael Gill, Gov.-elect Larry Hogan's pick to head the Department of Business and Economic Development, speaks with reporters following a news conference in Annapolis. (The Daily Record/Bryan P. Sears)

Gill can almost smell McCormick’s desire to stay in Maryland

R. Michael Gill is so confident that spice and flavoring manufacturer McCormick & Co. wants to stay in Maryland that he can almost smell it.

Gill, Gov.-elect Larry Hogan’s pick to lead the Department of Business and Economic Development, spoke to reporters Thursday about the company and the possibility that the company might leave it’s Hunt Valley location possibly in Delaware or Virginia. The thought clearly left a bad taste in his mouth.

“I love McCormick,” Gill said while speaking to reporters. “I’m a Baltimore County guy. You grow up with McCormick. You grow up with Old Bay. You grow up with the spices.”

Gill, who turned a baseball in his hands as he spoke to reporters, was almost salivating as he recounted having the spice company as a client during his days as an employee with IBM.

“They’d put out these annual reports with the scents on the paper,” Gill said. “I remember the vanilla annual report, the cinnamon annual report. I never read the reports but I smelled them all day long.”

And Gill, who is currently chairman of Evergreen Advisors, said he believes the spice maker will remain a Baltimore fixture.

“I personally don’t think they want to go anywhere,” Gill said. “I’m not putting any pressure on McCormick. I think they want to stay right here and they just want to know that they could have a good situation in terms location, in terms of their ability to quickly build a new headquarters. But McCormick wants to be a Maryland Company; I’m really confident of that.”