Byrd wins State Chamber DiSabatino award


The Delaware State Chamber of Commerce presented  Robert L. “Bobby” Byrd with the Dick DiSabatino Award..

The DiSabatino Award, named for former DSCC Chair Richard DiSabatino Sr. of EDiS onstruction, was established in the mid-1990s to recognize  contributions to shape opinion and public policy in the state of Delaware. The  honor was last presented in 2021 to  legislator Margaret Rose Henry. Prior to that, the award was given to former State Representative Joseph G. DiPinto and to John H. Taylor Jr., executive director of the Delaware Public Policy Institute (DPPI).

“It’s a universal truth in Delaware politics that when you need advice, you call Byrdie,” said President Joe Biden in a congratulatory letter to Byrd. 2024 marks Byrd’s 50th legislative session.

He ran for the Delaware House of Representatives in 1974 and at that time was the youngest person ever elected to the Delaware General Assembly. During his time  in the House, his colleagues elected him to serve as majority whip.

Byrd went on to form a government relations (lobbying) firm.


He was involved in the formation of the Delaware Financial Center Development Act, which created tens of thousands of jobs and the legalization of slot machines at racetracks.

“I believe ubiquitous is the best word to describe Bobby Byrd’s presence and influence on Delaware politics and public policy,” said Rich Heffron, former president of the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce. “Everythingpolitical in this state has revolved around Byrd in some way. He knows Delaware inside and out and is the epitome of working with both sides of the aisle to coordinate what’s best for Delaware.”

“The Dick DiSabatino Award has always been given to a leader – regardless of party – who always puts Delaware first ahead of any political or personal gain,” summarized Governor John Carney. “For the past half-century, nobody has been better than Bob Byrd in developing solutions to public policy problems. He always puts the best interests of the State of Delaware first, and the business community and his clients second. And it’s never been about him. He’s always been motivated to do what’s best for Delaware.”