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Sept. 2015: People on the move and achievements

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Mike-Forthman-photo1Hart to Heart taps top Baltimore talent

Michael A. Forthman was appointed executive vice president and chief operating officer at Hart to Heart Transportation, a regional provider of ambulance, paratransit and wheelchair transportation services in Delaware and Maryland.

Forthman is responsible for leading, implementing and integrating strategic and operational initiatives in alignment with the organization’s growth strategy.

He has more than 25 years of health-care administration experience and served as the vice president of facilities and support services at Greater Baltimore Medical Center.


Bryan Schlack

Tom Santer

Tom Santer

Kristin Barclay

Kristin Barclay

Fixture-maker Speakman expands executive team

New Castle-based Speakman, the premier maker of high-performance shower heads and plumbing fixtures, announced three senior-level appointments:

Bryan Schlack joined Speakman as chief financial officer. He will oversee all financial planning functions and compliance, and will also take on a key role in human capital management and corporate operations. Schlack brings over 20 years of progressive leadership and financial management expertise to the role, and previously held positions at Royal Ingredients and Decision Resources.

Tom Santer joins the executive team as vice president of sales, where he’ll be responsible for leading and growing sales across all channels. Previously, Santer held vice president positions at Grohe in both its sales and distribution strategy divisions over his 12-year tenure, where he played an integral part in the brand’s residential and commercial growth.

Kristin Barclay joined the company as director of marketing. Barclay brings more than 15 years of experience in online and offline marketing, commerce, and media, with a focus on home and lifestyle brands such as Pottery Barn, BabyCenter, and The Knot (XO Group). Since joining Speakman last August, Barclay has been a driving force behind the company’s revitalized positioning, branding and marketing efforts, including the launch of the company’s new web presence, Speakman.com.

Jason-HardyOperaDelaware names Hardy managing director

Jason Hardy has been appointed to the newly created position of managing director at OperaDelaware. Hardy joined OperaDelaware in 2013 as director of development and community engagement.  Under his leadership, the company was awarded more than $600,000 in transformational private foundation support and saw record-breaking levels of individual donations.

Hardy will continue to oversee the company’s fundraising efforts while taking on new responsibilities in the day-to-day operations of OperaDelaware.

houghton_michael_4x5Law partner Michael Houghton joins Freedom Award think tank

Michael Houghton, a partner at Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell, recently joined the Board of Directors of the Pete du Pont Freedom Award Foundation.

The foundation is a “think tank” to promote growth, opportunity and independence for businesses and individuals.

He currently serves on the Board of the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce, the Delaware Public Policy Institute, and the Delaware Bar Foundation, as well as the Executive Committees of the Delaware State Bar Association and Morris Nichols.

Lee-Ann-WilkinsonBerkshire Hathaway group wins productivity award

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Gallo Realty announced that The Lee Ann Wilkinson Group has achieved first-place awards for productivity in Delaware by the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices franchise. The Lee Ann Wilkinson Group earned the top spot statewide for achieving first place in the state in closed Residential GCI (Gross Commission Income) and first place in closed Residential Units. These awards are for production during the second quarter of 2015. “Lee Ann and her staff are a pleasure to have on our team,” said Andrew Ratner, vice president and broker of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Gallo Realty. “Lee Ann is consistently the top agent in our marketplace. She has attained this level through extremely hard work and a dedication to providing the best possible service for her clients.”

The firm has three main offices, located in Lewes, Rehoboth Beach and Bethany Beach, with two satellite locations in the Lewes area. The company is independently owned and operated.

Ridgely.jpegABA’s Business Law Section taps Ridgely as an advisor

Henry duPont Ridgely, senior counsel in DLA Piper’s Wilmington office and former Justice of the Delaware Supreme Court, has been appointed as an Advisor to the American Bar Association’s Business Law Section.

Justice Ridgely will begin his two-year term in September at the end of the 2015 Business Law Section Annual Meeting in Chicago. The Business Law Advisors Committee works to enhance the section’s educational opportunities through shared wisdom and experience of prominent individuals with distinguished records as practitioners, teachers or government officials in areas in which the section’s Substantive Committees are active.

Kazak_Anne_CJB9316_03_ppKazak named top editor at American Psychologist

Anne E. Kazak was named editor-in-chief of American Psychologist, the flagship journal of the American Psychological Association. Kazak is co-director of the Center for Healthcare Delivery Science at Nemours Children’s Health System at A.I. du Pont Hospital for Children. She is also the co-director of the Center for Pediatric Traumatic Stress, a treatment and services adaption center in the National Child Traumatic Stress Network and an adjunct professor of psychology at the University of Delaware.

Del. business website earns national recognition

The Delaware Business First Steps website (firststeps.delaware.gov) has won a national award from the Center for Digital Government. The site is a portal to information about business licensing, permits, and filings required for certain business by state, city, and county agencies in Delaware. It was awarded a 2015 Digital Government Achievement Award in the government-to-business category.

The Business First Steps site was built in response to Gov. Jack Markell’s challenge to state agencies to improve access to information about business licensing requirements. The website features a general checklist that most new businesses will need to follow, a list of over 200 different state agency registrations or licenses, and links to business resources.

All entrepreneurs need to first decide on their business structure and their business name before starting down the path of applying for a business license or other registrations with various government offices.

The Digital Government Achievement Awards highlight outstanding agency and department websites and applications.

Trinity Logistics ranks third among top Del. Workplaces

Trinity Logistics has been ranked third place in the medium-sized business category of the 2015 Delaware Top Workplaces list. The Top Workplaces awards are based solely on the results of an employee feedback survey administered by WorkplaceDynamics, LLC, a leading research firm that specializes in organizational health and workplace improvement.

This is the fifth consecutive year that Trinity Logistics has ranked in the top 10 on Delaware’s Top Workplaces List, including a first-place ranking in 2013. This year, Trinity team members answered the survey most positively in the categories of company alignment, job expectations, and work flexibility.

“We take this particular recognition to heart here at Trinity,” said Jeff Banning, CEO and President of Trinity Logistics. “At the end of the day, our company’s success depends upon the members of our team, so giving them an outstanding workplace to thrive in is a priority. This is a tribute to Team Trinity’s commitment to our culture, our team and a desire to always challenge the status quo.”

The privately owned business has grown into being one of the top logistics companies in the nation, providing freight solutions on a global scale.

Benchmark Builders wins Top Workplaces Award

Benchmark Builders has been awarded a 2015 Top Workplaces honor by The News Journal. The Top Workplaces lists are based solely on the results of an employee feedback survey administered by WorkplaceDynamics LLC, a leading research firm that specializes in organizational health and workplace improvement..

“We at Benchmark Builders know that the quality of our homes is the result of the high quality of our entire team,” said Irene Pulgini, Director of Sales and Marketing at Benchmark Builders. “They are the heart and soul of our organization.”

Benchmark Builders has been at the forefront of Delaware homebuilding since 1988, building a full range of communities, including traditional single-family homes, 55-plus living and modern townhome communities.

Richards Paving named a “Top Paving Contractor” 

Richards Paving was recently named one of the top paving contractors in the country by Pavement Maintenance & Reconstruction magazine. Richards Paving received the same honor in 2014 and is the only Delaware-based company to appear on this year and last year’s list.

“It is humbling, for the second year in a row, to be the only Delaware paving company recognized by the industry,” said Richard Piendak, founder and owner of Richards Paving. “We are proud that we don’t cut corners.  Our teams offer top-notch quality to all our customers and the recent growth in our commercial and residential business shows that.”

Richards Paving is the only paving company in Delaware to supply its own hot mix asphalt, allowing them to pave seven days a week.

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