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News Briefs People on the Move

People on the Move: Nov. 18

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People on the Move is a rundown of recent hirings, promotions, appointments and other notable movements by professionals in the state. If you’re interested in submitting an entry, please contact news@delawarebusinesstimes.com. 

Jason Whiting | PHOTO COURTESY OF MERCURY FINANCIAL

Mercury Financial announced the appointment of Jason Whiting as chief financial officer.

James Peterson, CEO at Mercury Financial, said, “We have incredible momentum in leveraging our advanced technology, and our ability to create a unique credit experience that helps millions of underserved hardworking Americans gain access to credit to build better lives. Bringing Jason on board will set us up for the next stage of our corporate development. His diverse background in finance and capital markets will be a key factor in our future growth.”

Whiting will join Mercury Financial from Barclays where he served as the Head of Strategy for the Americas, leading a high performing team to develop growth strategies for the Global Investment Bank, Global Markets, and the US Consumer Banking Business. Prior to his Strategy role, Whiting spent over 20 years in Investment Banking at Barclays and formerly Lehman Brothers, including serving as Head of Banks and Specialty Finance. He is a trusted senior banker with extensive C-suite and board relationships and deep experience in guiding companies in the consumer finance and financial technology sectors to grow and find success across numerous market environments.

Whiting will succeed Steve Carp, who helped successfully guide the company over the last five years as CFO. Carp has been appointed to lead Corporate Strategic Planning to advance the company’s next phase of development. Peterson said, “We are fortunate to have such talented leaders, who exemplify the spirit and dedication of the entire organization. Steve will be instrumental in helping chart our course for the future, furthering our efforts to expand financial inclusion.”


WSFS Bank announced Steven J. Cunningham has been named senior vice president, director of Small Business Administration (SBA) sales.

In his new role, Cunningham will be responsible for the strategy, profitability and growth of the SBA Sales team, which originates loans with SBA and other government guarantors, as well as expanding the national franchise strategy and providing best-in-class Customer experiences.

“Steven is a skilled SBA commercial manager and lender with an extensive background and breadth of knowledge of SBA programs, business banking, commercial real estate, and more,” Caruso said in a statement. “His experience developing and implementing competitive sales programs, partnerships and services across banking functions will be a great asset to WSFS as we continue to grow our SBA and franchise services.”

Most recently, Cunningham served as senior vice president, director of SBA and Government Lending at Primis Bank, where he managed the SBA department, including SBA production, operations, documentation, closing, and construction units. He has nearly 30 years of banking and financial services experience, and previously worked at TD Bank, Metro Bank and Wachovia, among others.

“I am excited to join an established group that has been a top three SBA lending team in Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey, as well as a top 60 ranked lender nationwide for SBA 7(a) loans,” said Cunningham. “I look forward to collaborating with the team as we continue to grow WSFS’ SBA and franchise lending portfolio while ensuring Customers receive top-tier service.”


Potter Anderson & Corroon LLP announced two additions to its senior executive team.  

Mark Price has joined the firm as its Chief Operating Officer. In that role, Price will be responsible for leading the firm’s finance and accounting, technology, human resources, diversity and inclusion initiatives, communications, marketing, facilities and administration, from day-to-day business issues to longer-term projects and strategic planning. 

In addition, Kathryn “Katie” DiMartino has joined the firm as its chief legal talent and recruiting officer. DiMartino will advise the firm’s leaders on talent management, develop a robust professional development and training program for all associates and counsel, and be responsible for the executive-level direction of legal talent and recruiting strategies for the firm. 

Price brings 25 years of law firm experience in operations management, strategy development, and marketing and business development. Most recently, he served as the global litigation practice director for Dechert LLP in its Philadelphia and London offices, where he directed the business operations of the firm’s 350-person litigation department in the U.S., Europe and Asia. Before Dechert, Price held senior management positions with White & Williams, Blank Rome and Ballard Spahr. He received his MBA and Bachelor of Science from Temple University.  

DiMartino has over 20 years of law firm experience in talent development, recruiting and marketing. Prior to Potter Anderson, she was the director of legal career coaching and planning at Troutman Pepper LLP, where she was responsible for the firm’s talent management functions and training curricula. She also established and led the firm’s coaching initiatives. Before joining Potter Anderson, DiMartino led the firmwide recruiting function for Pepper Hamilton for seven years. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Loyola University Maryland. 


Jeremy Grivensky | PHOTO COURTESY OF GAWTHROP GREENWOOD

Gawthrop Greenwood welcomed Jeremy Grivensky as an associate attorney practicing in the firm’s Litigation Department.

Grivensky joined the firm after graduating magna cum laude from Temple University Beasley School of Law, where he was a Beasley Scholar and an award-winning editor of the Temple Law Review. His extensive list of law school honors includes Federal Judicial Clerkship Honors, the Rubin Public Interest Law Honor Society, and awards for distinguished performance in both criminal procedure and legal writing.

Clients may be familiar with Grivensky from his work as a summer associate at Gawthrop Greenwood in 2021, supporting civil and commercial litigation cases across Pennsylvania state and federal courts. Before joining Gawthrop, Grivensky gained coast-to-coast federal court experience, serving Senior U.S. District Judge Timothy J. Savage of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania as well as Chief U.S. District Judge Dana M. Sabraw of the Southern District of California.

Hailing from a family of teachers and medical professionals in Northeast Pennsylvania, Grivensky draws on his experiences living in both rural and urban communities to serve clients. Previous to his law career, Grivensky earned his Bachelor of Science in Social Studies Education at Temple University. While an undergraduate, Grivensky taught multiple subjects at two high schools in the Philadelphia School District. After graduation, he worked as a substitute science teacher in Northeast Pennsylvania.


Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits announced John Aiello the vice president, general manager, Delaware.

Aiello is responsible for leading all sales activities in the Delaware market, including but not limited to developing short and long-term strategic planning, establishing sales policies and procedures, introducing new products, and ensuring that training objectives are achieved for all employees.

Aiello has 33 years of experience in the beverage alcohol industry, and during that time, has been a member of the Southern Glazer’s Delaware team for 15 years. Mr. Aiello began his career journey as a Field Marketing Manager at E&J Gallo Winery in 1995. Since then, he has stepped into positions of increasing responsibility and leadership, culminating to his most recent role as Division Director, Off-Premise Channel, Southern Glazer’s of Delaware.

Aiello is succeeding Jim Miller whose retirement was announced earlier this year. Both have worked closely to ensure a seamless transition of responsibilities.


Sallie Mae announced the appointment of R. Scott Blackley to its board of directors.

Blackley has been chief financial officer at Oscar Health, Inc. since March 2021, and effective December 1, will step into a new role as Oscar’s Chief Transformation Officer overseeing operations, corporate strategy, and the company’s +Oscar business. He brings decades of experience in financial services, risk management, strategy, and operations to the Sallie Mae board having also served as Chief Financial Officer at Capital One Financial Corporation from May 2016 to March 2021 and as Capital One’s Controller from March 2011 to March 2017 and as its Principal Accounting Officer from July 2011 to May 2017.

Blackley also held executive positions at Fannie Mae and senior roles in consulting and public accounting, including an appointment to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission as a Professional Accounting Fellow and as a Partner with KPMG, LLP. He holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Utah.

“Scott is a well-respected and seasoned executive with tremendous insight, vision, and experience in financial services and operations,” Carter Franke, chair of the Board of Directors, said “We look forward to tapping into his vast knowledge, leadership, and expertise as we continue to deliver on our strategic priorities for customers and shareholders.”


Faegre Drinker announced Gina Kastel has been selected by the firm’s board as the next chair. Kastel will succeed Tom Froehle and Andrew Kassner, who have served as co-chairs of the firm since the combination of Drinker Biddle & Reath and Faegre Baker Daniels formed Faegre Drinker in February 2020.

“I am honored to serve Faegre Drinker and our clients in this important role and look forward to working with Tom and Andy during this transition,” Kastel said. “We are a stronger firm thanks to Andy and Tom’s leadership through the combination, and their remarkable work has led to Faegre Drinker’s early success. In collaboration with lawyers and business professionals across our offices, I plan to build on our foundation of exceptional clients, talent and culture, while leading efforts to continue innovating our services, organization and the client experience.”


Jon Sheehan, chief of policy and senior advisor to Governor Carney, and Scott Stein, co-owner of Bardea restaurants, have joined the Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau board of directors.

Bill Sullivan, chairman of the Bureau’s board of directors, said, “Mr. Sheehan’s deep experience in governmental affairs and Mr. Stein’s significant expertise in hospitality marketing are a winning combination. We are pleased to welcome them to our board.”

Sheehan currently serves as Chief of Policy and Senior Advisor to Governor John Carney. Prior to joining the Governor’s administration in 2017, he was a fifth-grade teacher and served as Chief of Staff at the New York City Department of Education’s Division of Family and Community Engagement.

Stein is a fourth-generation restaurateur. He opened his first restaurant, Red Sky, in 2002 in Philadelphia. He has since owned and operated restaurants including Pearl in Philadelphia and Arde Osteria on Philadelphia’s Main Line. In 2018, he opened Bardea Food and Drink on Market Street, his first Wilmington restaurant, with chef Antimo DiMeo. The Bardea group has since grown to include Pizzeria Bardea, Taqueria El Chingon, and Bardea Steak. Stein is a board member of the Delaware Restaurant Association and the James Beard Foundation.

José Quiñones | PHOTO COURTESY OF LJI


Sussex County realtor José Quiñones has been elected to the Board of Directors of the Local Journalism Initiative (LJI).

Quiñones, owner/broker of Linda Vista Real Estate Services in Rehoboth Beach, is a well-known fixture in Sussex County. Quiñones, who received the 2018 Trailblazer Award from the Sussex County Chamber of Commerce, also produces the vlog “ I Am Sussex,” which celebrates life in Sussex County.

“I’m excited to join LJI’s board so we can expand access to information and keep people informed,” Quiñones said.

Quiñones is an expert at building effective partnerships, and that is key to the organization’s work, LJI President Allison Taylor Levine said.

“Jose brings a real passion for building community in Delaware, especially Sussex County,” Levine said. “Through his real estate work and his broader engagement, he understands the nuances of Sussex County communities in ways that will help us understand how to be of greatest service.”


Delaware Botanic Gardens (DBG) at Pepper Creek, announced Michael E. Riska has joined the DBG Board of Directors.
Riska holds an M.Ed in Natural Science from University of Delaware and has served as a science educator in Delaware for over 50 years before retiring from his role as Executive Director, Delaware Nature Society in 2011.  During his tenure as Executive Director at Delaware Nature Society (1984 – 2011), endowments grew from $300,000 to $18 million, and he oversaw program expansion to 35 staff members and 1,000 volunteers.  Over the years, Michael held positions as Associate Professor for the University of Delaware, teaching courses for teachers in Environmental Education and planning curriculums and special programs for Delaware youth.  He has been honored with several achievement awards including: the Nature Conservancy Lifetime Achievement Award and the 2014 National Wildlife Federation Special Achievement for extraordinary contribution to the Conservation of Wildlife and National Resources.
The Delaware Botanic Gardens Advisory Council announced two new members of the Advisory Council are Carol Bason and Elizabeth Rives.
Bason holds an MS in Biology/Environmental Science & Public Policy, a BS in Biology, and a Certificate in Wetland Science & Management. Over the past 5 years, Carol served as a volunteer science advisor at Delaware Botanic Gardens where she has provided research, marketing, and development support.  With her expertise in government contracting, she brought to DBG six State-funded environmental grants in stormwater management best practices that created the Rhyne Garden, the Living Shoreline and the Green Technology demonstrations at the Restroom Facility.
Rives holds a BA from the University of Virginia and a graduate certificate in Natural History Field Studies from the Audubon Naturalist Society.  She served as a financial services, communications, and policy professional for most of her career and later worked as an environmental educator & communications specialist at the National Park Service.  She has been a volunteer at Delaware Botanic Gardens since 2018, serving as a docent, tour guide and project leader for the woodland tree and shrub inventory.

Elizabeth Rives | PHOTO COURTESY OF DBG

Michael E. Riska | PHOTO COURTESY OF DBG

Carol Bason| PHOTO COURTESY OF DBG

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