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8th annual DBT 40 class is full of inspiration

Well, more than a year after we entered a historic global health crisis and rollercoaster economy, we’re still awaiting a return to our pre-pandemic “normal” – if that is ever to exist again.

Despite our changed world, there is still much to be excited about in the First State.

For one, Delaware in 2021 is operating on a much bigger stage, practically a world’s stage as the most powerful man in America flies home to Greenville several times a month to sleep in the same bed he did before calling the White House home. Well, at least Joe’s home away from home, right Delaware?

The historic presidency of favorite son Joe Biden has turned the nation’s gaze to Wilmington, Rehoboth Beach and everywhere in between. If even a hint of that attention finds our eighth annual DBT 40 list, which recognizes the efforts of 40 of our most promising and accomplished professionals under the age of 40, they will be greatly impressed by the work being done.

Our honorees span a range of ages 24 to 40 – some have broken the age 40 barrier since our July application deadline – and include a lawyer representing a death row inmate, a scientist working on climate change, an up-and-coming film director, and a hotelier looking to promote Delaware to the masses, among so many more.

I’m excited to report that interest in the award program continues to grow in popularity, reach and diversity, as seen in our honorees found in the next 26 pages.

We’re proud to say that the Class of 2021 features a nearly equal split of men and women, a 33% representation of minority professionals, and 25% of honorees from Kent and Sussex counties – making it one of our most diverse classes ever. We hope to increase those statistics even further as we grow the brand and awareness of the opportunity to be honored in coming months and years.

You’ll find recaps of our honorees in these pages as well as online at ww.delawarebusinesstimes.com/dbt40. We also hope that you’ll consider attending our annual DBT 40 awards ceremony on Oct. 7 at the Executive Banquet and Conference Center in Glasgow to meet some of our honorees in person. 

We are striving to do all that we can to hold a safe event, adhering to state and federal health guidelines as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to affect our communities. Guests at our event will be required to show proof of vaccination at the door and masks will be available.

Finally, a word to the nominees whose applications have fallen a bit short. Don’t let this year’s disappointment distract you from building your business and fine-tuning your application for next year. Many of our honorees over the years have applied more than once and built applications that clearly differentiated them from the crowd.

I look forward to seeing you at our awards presentations. 

Jacob Owens

Maria Clyde

Kate Cusumano

John Davis

Sarah DeFlaviis

Anthony DeFrancisco

Edward Devenny

Natalie Di Sabatino

Cinnamon Elliott

Tierra Fair United Way of Delaware

Tierra Fair

Matthew Ford

Lauren Gates

Kelly Gordon

Alias Graves

Benjamin Gray

Nitika Gupta Fiorella

Keith Hammond

Jordan Hellstern

Jami Jackson

Andrea Larson

Marshala Lee

Emerson Marine

Nickolas Martin

Chase Marvil

Christopher Metkiff

Katie Millard

Meghan Newberry

Sarina Pasricha

Bhavin Patel

Connor Peoples

Michael Pfeifer

Laura Ristano

Wali Rushdan II

Jamie Schneider

 Julleanna Seely

Gregory Skolnik

Anesha Truesdale

Daniel Walker

Maurice Winkfield

Brenda Wise

Jennifer Ying

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