January - June 2022 Speakers
January 13, 2022
Global macroeconomist who excels at explaining the economy to non-economists. Award-winning macroeconomic forecaster, valued by businesses for relating developments in the macroeconomy and in financial and energy markets to outcomes in cyclical industrial sectors. Frequent keynote speaker who has given more than 900 speeches on the economic outlook to trade associations and companies since 1995. Author and publisher of monthly Current Economic Conditions newsletter. (If you make decisions for a cyclical business, you should subscribe!) Member of Consensus Economics, Wall Street Journal, and CNBC Fed survey panels. NABE Fellow. Has served on the Boards of Directors of several non-profit organizations and would be extremely well-qualified to serve on the Board of Directors of a company in the energy, chemical, or materials industries.
January 20, 2022
The mission of Christina Cultural Arts Center Inc. (CCAC) is to make affordable arts, education, career training, exhibitions and live performances accessible to youth and adults in a welcoming learning environment.
For nearly 70 years, CCAC has been an anchor in the Delaware arts community and Wilmington's Creative District, focusing on the tenets of Hope, Knowledge, Inspiration & Passion by providing instruction and performance/exhibition opportunities in music, dance, drama, visual arts and poetry.
Christina offers one of the only integrated arts and academic programs in Delaware, utilizing the power of arts to promote school success, career training, and positive social behavior.
We collaborate with local and national partners — business, educators, and artists — to promote the creative industry and advocate for the socio-economic impact of the arts in our community. Christina Cultural Arts Center is a member of the Mid Atlantic Foundation Jazz Touring Network.
Dr. Julio Carrion – University of DelawareAssociate Professor & Associate Chair of Political Science & International RelationsLatin American & Iberian Studies Faculty“Perspective on Latin America: What to Expect in 2022”
January 27, 2022
Julio Carrión, PhD (University of Pittsburgh, 1993) joined the Department in 1998. He specializes in Latin American and Comparative Politics. He is currently conducting research on mass support for authoritarian alternatives in Latin America. He teaches courses in Latin American Politics and data analysis for political science.
A Dynamic Theory of Populism in Power: The Andes in Comparative Perspective. New York: Oxford University Press.
“Required Consultation or Provoking Confrontation? The Use of the Referendum in Peace Agreements." Representation Vol. 55 (2): 141-157. (co-authored with Lauren Marie Balasco)
“Takeoff and Turbulence in Modernizing Peru." Latin American Research Review Vol. 54 (2): 499-508
Review of John Crabtree and Francisco Durand, Peru: Elite Power and Political Capture.
London: Zed Books, 2017. Bulletin of Latin American Research Vol. 38, No. 5, 681-682, November 2019.
February 3, 2022
Current Club Executive Ashley B. Cloud spent six years learning and teaching about Wilmington’s history as it relates to the founding of the Quaker Hill Historic District in 1738 and its contributions to Wilmington’s economic success, the American Revolution, the Underground Railroad, and the Civil Rights movement.
Ashley B. Cloud nurtured her love of history and knowledge with a B.A. in English Literature from Wake Forest University. WFU is where she met her Wilmington native husband with whom she shares two beautiful daughters.
February 10, 2022
John Riley retired in 2016 after leading government relations for two global corporations. He has also served in various economic development roles including interim CEO of the Delaware Prosperity Partnership. He has been a contributor to Town Square Delaware and other publications since 2012 and in 2017 joined former Philadelphia Eagle Kevin Reilly as co-author of his book, Tackling Life. John is an Army veteran and continues to be active in veterans’ affairs. As a board member and past chairman of Easterseals Delmarva, he has been a leader on disability issues for two decades. John and his wife, Sharon, live in Wilmington. They have three children and seven grandchildren.
February 17, 2022
Committed to making Delaware State University the most diverse, contemporary Historically Black College/University (HBCU) in America, Tony Allen became the University’s 12th President in January 2020. With a clear mission to increase educational access and opportunity for all, the University is among the most consequential institutions in the nation, serving 5,000 students in the United States and, via international partnerships, in 23 countries worldwide.
The 1890 Land-Grant institution is home to four academic colleges and a burgeoning graduate school and is completing the acquisition of nearby Wesley College.
Tony manages a $140 MM budget, a $23 MM research portfolio, and a $40 MM endowment. He previously served as the University’s Executive Vice President and Provost, where he oversaw 220 professors in 18 academic departments.
Prior to his time at the University, Tony developed and led the corporate reputation group at Bank of America and was responsible for ongoing reputation analysis and related research. Tony also led communications for the bank’s largest divisions, including Consumer, Commercial Banking, and Wealth Management. He started his financial services career as an Executive Vice President at MBNA America.
Tony is the Founding President of the Metropolitan Wilmington Urban League, Co-founder of Public Allies Delaware, and Chair Emeritus of the National Urban Fellows, widely viewed as the most prestigious fellowship for professionals in the public sector. He is also a member of the Economic and Community Advisory Council for the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
Starting his career as speechwriter to then-United States Senator Joseph R. Biden, Jr., Tony was tapped by the President- to lead the Presidential Inaugural Committee and to serve on the Advisory Board of the President’s Transition Team.
For his life’s work, Tony has been awarded many honors. Most notable among them is the Whitney M. Young Award for Advancing Racial Equality, the National Urban League’s highest honor; the Excellence in Education Award given by the Delaware Barristers Association; and Lifetime Achievement Awards from the National Urban Fellows and Public Allies.
Tony holds a B.A. in Political Science and a Ph.D. in Urban Affairs & Public Policy from the University of Delaware, as well as a Master of Public Administration from Baruch College (CUNY). He is the proud father of four fantastic children and life partner to his high school sweetheart, Ms. Tara Anderson.
February 24, 2022
James H. Lee is an award-winning financial advisor with over 30 years of experience. He is also the founder of StratFI, a boutique investment advisory firm that focuses on “what happens next.”
In his new book, Foresight Investing: A Complete Guide to Finding Your Next Great Trade, Jim finds amazing opportunities in the emerging technologies of tomorrow, including the internet of things (IoT), augmented reality, cryptocurrencies, automation, artificial intelligence, longevity science, and new sources of energy
In his first book, Resilience and the Future of Everyday Life, published shortly after the 2008-2009 financial crisis, Jim outlined generational strategies for dealing with economic uncertainty. Resilience anticipated the rise of the local foods, the “gig economy”, a boom for craft and artisanal goods, upcycling, the tiny-home movement, alternative currencies, gender blending, co-working, and home/ride sharing platforms.
Jim has been quoted by The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The News Journal, Financial Planning, and Technical.ly. His articles have been printed by the AARP, Investopedia, the Journal of Futures Studies, Technological Forecasting & Social Change, and The Futurist.
A popular keynote speaker on trends, Jim has presented to audiences in the U.S. and abroad, covering a range of topics related to the future.
He is an active member of the Association of Professional Futurists and holds multiple professional certifications:
Starting his career as speechwriter to then-United States Senator Joseph R. Biden, Jr., Tony was tapped by the President- to lead the Presidential Inaugural Committee and to serve on the Advisory Board of the President’s Transition Team.
• Certified Financial Planner (CFP®)
• Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA)
• Chartered Market Technician (CMT)
In 2021 Jim received the highest honor from the Association of Professional Futurists (APF), the Most Significant Futures Works Award. He also won the National Association of Active Investment Managers (NAAIM) Active Investing Strategy Competition for the StratFI Caffeinated Market Timing Strategy.
Jim graduated with a B.A. in Economics from the College of William & Mary and an M.S. in Studies of the Future from the University of Houston-Clear Lake. In his free time, Jim enjoys biking and cooking with his wife Stephanie.
March 3, 2022
Experienced Principal Planner with a demonstrated history of working in transportation and transit. Skilled in Transportation Planning, with a background in Sustainability, Urban Planning, and Land Use. Strong community outreach and social services professional with a BA focused in Geography/History from University of Delaware.
March 17, 2022
I am a poet, essayist, and K12 arts-in-education advocate. Since 2004, I have taught creative writing for community organizations across the Mid Atlantic, and led poetry classes in New Hampshire, Vermont, Michigan, Indiana, Wisconsin and at the University of Delaware as a professor of poetry. I coach Delaware high school students in their performances for the annual Poetry Out Loud national recitation contest. Bringing poetry and the arts into schools is crucial! I know this because both saved me.
Poetry & Nonfiction
My first full-length book of poems, Words for House Story was a 2015 Best Books selection at Beltway Poetry. Earlier chapbooks are Forage, winner of the 2011 Whitebird Chapbook Prize, and Your Heart and How It Works, awarded the 2010 Global Filipino Literary Award. Poems and prose appear in Asian American Literary Review, Poetry, The Common online, McSweeney’s, About Place Journal and Ink Knows No Borders: Poems of the Immigrant and Refugee Experience.
A self-educated writer
I feel fortunate for the community I’ve found at Hedgebrook and VONA/Voices of Our Nations as well as other retreats and residencies over the past decade. If you are working on a complicated story and want to finish your book (that’s me!) I recommend The Unicorn Author’s Club for their leadership in applying anti-racist principles to sharing our work. The Unicorns helped me grow as a writer, reader, activist and person.
My story about surviving violence and loss, including both parents at the young age of sixteen. Most importantly, it is about the complexity of growing up biracial as a Filipina American in a white world where the Filipinx community has often been rendered invisible by an imperialist view of history. Lastly, my work is about the tenacity of sibling love and the healing bonds of belonging.
I love long road trips, hikes, hanging out with family. Plants, amphibians and reptiles, surfing, drunken noodles and the smell books at the library bring me joy. My “Decades” sisters and community of writers sustain me. I live in the woods of northern Delaware on unceded Leni Lenape homeland, and am grateful for its conservation and stewardship.
March 24, 2022
Jean Dahlgren became the third and first female president of Delaware College of Art and Design in August of 2018. Previously she served as dean of undergraduate programs at Sage College of Albany in Albany, N.Y.
During her more than 30 years in higher education instruction and administration, President Dahlgren has developed expertise in growing a student body, creating dynamic curricula, and fostering strategic partnerships. She has spoken nationally and internationally on topics related to achieving excellence in art and design education.
Since coming to DCAD, she has helped increase enrollment and completed a new strategic plan for the College. She oversaw the implementation of major technological infrastructure upgrades and curricular changes for all majors. She has developed new partnerships with other colleges, including new 2+2 programs with Pennsylvania College of Art and Design and Moore College of Art and Design, and a partnership with Goldey-Beacom College in Delaware. In 2019-2020, Dahlgren helped raise over $1 million dollars in grants and private funding for the College.
In Wilmington, Dahlgren serves on the Board of Directors for Downtown Visions and Main Street America Wilmington. She is a member of the Wilmington Rotary Club, the National Art Education Association, and AIGA. She is a former board member of the Upstate New York Chapter of AIGA and is a former Question Leader with ETS/The College Board for AP Studio Art.
President Dahlgren has a Master of Fine Arts degree from Marywood University in Scranton, P.A. and an M.A. from the State University of New York in Oswego, N.Y. She has two daughters and lives in Wilmington with her partner Dennis and their dog.
March 31, 2022
Blanche L. Jackson is currently the CEO of Stepping Stones Community Federal Credit Union, with the primary responsibility of overseeing the day-to-day operations and implementing products and services that are needed to provide financial stability in the city of Wilmington. She has been the mentor of Stepping Stones since 2009 and instrumental in its chartering in 2011.
She was the Executive VP of the Delaware State Police Federal Credit Union, where she was employed for 20 years. At DSPFCU, she managed the day-to-day operations and was responsible for the areas of lending, operations, information technology, human resources, and compliance. She is a Certified Credit Union Executive through CUES and a certified credit union compliance officer with the National Association of Federal Credit Unions. She holds a degree in finance.
April 7, 2022
Patrick is one of the founders of CompassRed. Fascinated by how data can change decisions, directions, and lives - Patrick combined his past experiences in consulting and agency life to help set the current direction of CompassRed. Patrick operates his life from the philosophy that the only thing he knows is that he doesn’t know. What gets him out of bed every morning is the dream of a day with his co-workers full of learning and laughter.He loves a morning run through the woods, a Sunday morning read, and the dream of sailing with a steady wind.
April 21, 2022
A native of Wilmington, Kathy joined the Delaware Department of Justice out of law school, starting her legal career as one of just two women in the Criminal Division. In the years that followed, she prosecuted scores of domestic violence, sexual assault, and homicide cases – including working with the FBI, New Castle County Police Department, and Delaware State Police to investigate and prosecute a serial killer who tortured and murdered five women.
She would go on to serve as both State Prosecutor and Chief Deputy Attorney General, prior to entering private practice where she represented individuals and companies in criminal, regulatory and civil matters. She would return to the DOJ in 2011 as State Prosecutor under Attorneys General Beau Biden and Matt Denn. Prior to running for Attorney General, Kathy served as Chief Administrative Officer of New Castle County under County Executive Matt Meyer, managing personnel and budgetary matters for Delaware’s second-largest public employer. On January 1st, 2019, she was sworn in as Delaware’s 46th Attorney General.
April 28, 2022
Mike has over 30 years of experience in both government and the private sector. He was a principal at the government and public relations firm, Podesta Group, in Washington from 2010 to 2018. His past positions also include serving as Chief of Staff to U.S. Representative Michael N. Castle (R-Del.) from 2003 to 2010; Vice President, Federal and State Government Affairs, Experian Information Solutions, N.A.; Director, Federal Government Affairs, TRW, Inc.; and Legislative Assistant to former U.S. Senator David F. Durenberger (R-MN). He also served as councilperson for the City of New Castle. He has been President of the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce since July 1, 2018.
Mike and his wife Michelle live in New Castle where she ran a thriving business, 2nd Act Antiques. Both are active in their local community.
Xavier Teixido’s restaurant career has taken him from the Brandywine Racetrack in Wilmington to Commander’s Palace in New Orleans and back to Wilmington, where he purchased Harry’s Savoy Grill in 1993. With a $3 million ballroom addition opened in 1998, Harry’s became a Brandywine Hundred favorite for fine dining as well as weddings and other special events. In 2003, Xavier took the Harry’s name and reputation to a third venture, opening Harry’s Seafood Grill on Wilmington’s Riverfront. In 2010, he and partners David Banks and Kelly O’Hanlon purchased Kid Shelleen’s in Trolley Square.
A former president of the Delaware Restaurant Association and Delaware Restaurateur of the Year for 1999, Xavier brought attention to the First State when he served as chairman of the National Restaurant Association (2002-2003) and chaired the Board of Trustees of the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (2011-2012). He is also an advocate for the restaurant industry in Delaware, serving on the state’s Tourism Advisory Board and the University of Delaware Hotel Restaurant Institutional Management (HRIM) Advisory Board. In March of 2017, Xavier was awarded the Thad and Alice Eure Ambassador of Hospitality Award by the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation. He is active in many charitable causes and has established a culture of community service at Harry’s which offers both encouragement and bonuses to employees who give their time to serve the community.
May 12, 2022
Molly Giordano was named Executive Director of the Delaware Art Museum in February 2021 with a 10-year tenure at DelArt. She stepped into the directorship as the Museum was rebuilding from the impact of COVID-19. In addition to rebuilding visitation and in-person programming, Giordano has overseen a major gallery reinstallation, capital improvements to strengthen the core facility, and numerous exhibitions, including several celebrating African American art.
“Molly demonstrated great leadership in a very challenging period while our Interim Executive Director over the past 13 months,” said David Pollack, President of the Board of Trustees. “The Board has full confidence in her as DelArt returns to fully serving its community. Molly’s deep relationships within the greater Wilmington community, and years of service to that community, position the Museum to realize its vision of becoming an essential resource for its city and region.”
May 19, 2022
Thomas C. Humphrey serves as Tournament Committee Chair for the 2022 BMW Championship that will be played on Wilmington Country Club’s South Course, August 18 through 21. The event is expected to bring over 100,000 spectators to the Wilmington area and be telecast to a global audience of over 30 million people by NBC TV and the Golf Channel.
Tom also serves as Board Treasurer for EastSide Charter School in Wilmington. Tom retired from the DuPont Company in 2002 after a twenty-eight-year career. He served as President of DuPont Asia Pacific LTD and as President of Dupont Health and Nutrition.
Tom graduated from the University of Virginia, McIntire School of Commerce, in 1974. He lives with his wife, Mary, in Rockland, Delaware.
June 2, 2022
On February 24, 2010, President Barack Obama nominated Stephen T. Ayers to serve as the 11th Architect of the Capitol. On May 12, 2010, the United States Senate, by unanimous consent, confirmed Mr. Ayers, and on May 13, 2010, the President officially appointed Mr. Ayers to a 10-year term as Architect of the Capitol.
Under Mr. Ayers' leadership, the Architect of the Capitol oversaw the restoration of the U.S. Capitol Dome, restoring it to its original splendor. He also led the restoration of the Ulysses S. Grant Memorial, a campus-wide effort to restore and repair deteriorating stone façades and launched the renewal of the Cannon House Office Building, a century-old building that is plagued with serious deficiencies.
Mr. Ayers, through a variety of initiatives, reduced carbon emissions, improved energy efficiency and implemented sustainable design practices throughout the Capitol complex. He was also committed to supporting small businesses to help facilitate competition and support local communities and has implemented several programs to actively award contracts to companies that reflect the diversity of our country.
Mr. Ayers completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Architecture at the University of Maryland, received his Master of Science degree in Systems Management from the University of Southern California and was awarded an honorary Doctor of Public Design by the Boston Architectural College in recognition of his service as a champion of historic preservation, great public design and sustainability. He received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Maryland School of Architecture and is a licensed architect in California. The University of Maryland School of Architecture presented him the Distinguished Alumni Award and awarded him the Sigma Delta Tau Silver Medal for Distinction in Architecture. He is a licensed architect in California.
After attending Officers Training School at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas, Mr. Ayers was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Air Force and assigned to Edwards Air Force Base in Edwards, California. While stationed at Edwards, he served as a Staff Architect and Design Team Chief with the 6510th Civil Engineer Squadron. Mr. Ayers was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal for his military service and after five years of active duty, decided to pursue a career in public service in another way.
After working in the architectural and engineering community in the Washington, D.C., area, Mr. Ayers joined the Voice of America in Washington, D.C., as a General Engineer in 1991. In 1992, he transferred to Rhodes, Greece, to lead design and construction efforts at several Voice of America sites in Greece and Germany.
Returning to the United States in 1997, Mr. Ayers joined the Architect of the Capitol as an Assistant Superintendent for the Senate Office Buildings. He served in several capacities over the next decade, including Deputy Superintendent for the Senate Office Buildings, Superintendent of the Library Buildings and Grounds, Acting Deputy Architect/Chief Operating Officer and Deputy Architect/Chief Operating Officer. He filled the role of Acting Architect from February 2007 until his appointment as Architect of the Capitol in May 2010.
Mr. Ayers is a member and Fellow of the American Institute of Architects (FAIA), and an Accredited Professional in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED AP).
Mr. Ayers was the recipient of the Construction Industry Institute's 2011 Carroll H. Dunn Award for Excellence. The National Academy of Construction elected Mr. Ayers as a member of its 2013 class for transforming project delivery processes at the U.S. Capitol and caring for the nation's historic treasures through inspired leadership, extraordinary vision and personal commitment. Mr. Ayers was selected as the 2018 recipient of the Thomas Jefferson Award for Public Architecture by the American Institute of Architects.
Traci Manza MurphyExecutive Director
Delaware Coalition Against Gun Violence
“Anti Gun Violence Initiatives”
June 9, 2022
A graduate of the University of Delaware, Traci began her career at her alma mater focused on Annual Giving. She leveraged that experience to become Associate Director of Winterthur Museum and Gardens Membership team from 2001-2015. If that wasn’t enough for this wife and mother of 3, by 2007 Traci had already launched two successful endeavors that combined her expertise and interests. She co-founded the Brandywine Buzz, an innovative creation at the forefront of answering the question: what is there to do in the Brandywine area for parents and children? This weekly email grew into a full-fledged media outlet for information on community events, museums, school happenings, summer camps, and more. Simultaneously, Traci launched her consultant business offering her professional services for Fund Development, Social Media Management, and Writing. Her passion and advocacy led her to becoming a founding member of the grassroots Moms Demand Action Delaware chapter which has been instrumental in raising continued awareness and results around how our State responds to gun violence. This work led her to becoming Executive Director for the Delaware Coalition Against Gun Violence in 2019. When she’s not wearing her many professional hats, Traci resides in Hockessin with her husband and three children, loves going to Dewey Beach, playing tennis, reading novels, volunteering, and planning fun girls’ weekends.
June 16, 2022
Alana Iannucci Delaney is the Park Superintendent for Wilmington and Alapocas Run State Parks in Wilmington, Delaware. She considers herself lucky to manage the maintenance, operations, and programming for nearly 600 acres of parkland and significant cultural resources in the heart of the state’s busiest city. Since her State Parks career began in 2009, she has held many positions. Her favorites include her time as an AmeriCorps Environmental Educator, Park Patrol Officer, Assistant Camp Director, Volunteer Coordinator, Assistant Superintendent, and Park Manager. Alana has also served on the Board of the Delaware Recreation and Parks Society, serving as the organizations President in 2018 and remains active today. A New York native, Alana has called Delaware home since 2006 when she started at the University of Delaware. She currently resides in Wilmington with her husband, daughter, and dogs, Habanero and Dyno. In her free time, she enjoys rock climbing, kayaking, and hiking or biking with her family.
June 23, 2022
Sandy’s affiliation as co-founder of the Delaware Juneteenth Association (DEJA) has proven to be one of her most rewarding accomplishments. As part of the Annual Juneteenth Celebration, she has directed the Juneteenth Youth Pageant, which will be celebrating 23 years. By her years of service to the organization, Sandy has shown her dedication and commitment to empowering the next generation of leaders. Her most recent recognition came from her colleagues of the Delaware Juneteenth Association, being honoured with the “Sandra M. Clarke Service Award”. This award is to be presented annually to a deserving youth, ages 8-18, for their Exemplary Community Service.
Sandy is a native of Wilmington who has had a professional and community impact as a Program Administrator for the State of Delaware and as a Site Director for Children and Families First. This dynamic community advocate is a proud and beloved mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother of a beautiful family whom she shares with her husband of 57 years.