Personnel File, Feb. 13, 2024


Gilmartin named M. Davis president


M. Davis & Sons, Inc., appointed  Michael A. Gilmartin as President and Chief Financial Officer.

After serving as CFO since 2015, Gilmartin brings 25 years of experience in the contracting and construction industry to his new role. In addition to maintaining his current responsibilities as CFO, Gilmartin will now oversee strategic presidential duties. John C. Gooden, the former president, will continue to serve as Chief Operating Officer. 

“I am always proud to see our team members grow, and Mike is a great example of a long-term employee who has flourished with the company,” said M. Davis CEO Peggy Del Fabbro. “I am confident that his knowledge and experience will further his success as he takes on this next chapter of his career.” 

Gilmartin holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting and has taken strategic courses at The Wharton School at The University of Pennsylvania. He has also completed project management and leadership training through Associated Builders and Contractors and the Construction Financial Management Association.


M. Davis is a fifth-generation industrial construction company based in Newark.

Mary Campbell Center hires executive director


The Mary Campbell Center announced  Kathy Ardekani has been hired as its new Executive Director.

Ardekani has served in leadership roles in communities across southeastern Pennsylvania, most recently as President and CEO of White Horse Village. 

“I began my career as a social worker,” she said, “and my focus has always been trying to make life better for people.” This focus is on residents and on team members alike. “I’m excited to be part of the MCC family and look forward to working together to make a strong organization even stronger and help residents live their best lives.”

The Mary Campbell Center is a long-term intermediate care facility in the Wilmington area.

Sussex named County Engineer 


Michael T. Harmer was named Sussex  County’s new County Engineer, filling the position after Hans M. Medlarz announced plans to retire later this year. 

Harmer is a registered professional engineer who most recently as chief engineer for a suburban Washington, D.C., wastewater utility, overseeing its engineering and construction department of nearly 375 employees and some 100 contract workers. He also managed an approximately $600 million budget for an operation serving a half-million customer accounts. 

Harmer grew up in Newark and owns a home in Dewey Beach, is a graduate of Mississippi State University with a degree in civil engineering. 

The county department oversees a staff of nearly 180 people in five divisions responsible for designing, constructing, and maintaining county projects. Those projects include public wastewater systems and various County facilities. Engineering is the single-largest department within county government.

DSU names aviation director

Delaware State University named United Airlines Captain and Chair of the university’s Aviation Advisory Council, C.J. Charlton, as the new Aviation Program Director.

 Charlton accumulated more than 7,300 hours of flight time. He is also a retired Major from the North Carolina Air National Guard, where he was a C-130 pilot, accumulating over 3,000 hours, 1,500 of which were in combat conditions.

After seven years of leading and managing the Aviation  Program, Lt. Col. (Ret.) Michael Hales ended his DSU tenure in mid-January after being named CEO of the United Aviate Academy (UAA) – a flight school wholly owned and operated by United Airlines in Goodyear, AZ.  

Stadley joins Journalism Initiative


The Delaware  Local Journalism Initiative  announced that David Stradley will serve as the director of membership and community engagement, supporting the new collaborative nonprofit newsroom, Spotlight Delaware.

In the new role, Stradley will lead the Spotlight Delaware membership program and partnership activities throughout the state, facilitating communication between the news team and communities. He also will support community engagement aspects of LJI’s other initiatives, including the internship program and the Delaware Journalism Collaborative.

Stradley has 20 years of experience connecting a broad mix of Delawareans to ideas and to each other. He moved to the First State in 2002 for a position at Delaware Theatre Company, where he directed productions, developed audience engagement events, and ran educational programs. For the past 12 years, he has served as producing artistic director of Delaware Shakespeare (Del Shakes). 

Spotlight Delaware will focus on covering public policy and how it affects the daily lives of Delawareans throughout the state, with an emphasis on communities that have not always had access to local news and information. 

Troxler named Corrections deputy commissioner


Delaware  Bureau of Prisons Chief Shane Troxler as Deputy Commissioner of the Delaware Department of Correction.

Troxler fills the vacancy created when then-Deputy Commissioner Terra Taylor was named Acting Commissioner.  Taylor was recently elevated to Commissioner permanently upon her Senate confirmation. Troxler joined the DOC in 2003 as a Correctional Officer and has served in variety of roles.

 In 2018, Troxler joined the DOC’s senior leadership team in Dover as Deputy Bureau Chief of Prisons and was later appointed Bureau Chief of Prisons in 2019.  

Gunnip promotions

Gunnip & Company CPAs announced the promotion of Lynn B. Ritter to partner.

 Lynn has over 30 years of diverse tax compliance and consulting experience. She specializes in individual, trust and estate taxation.  Lynn earned her Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from the University of Baltimore and a Master of Science in Taxation from Widener University. She is a Certified Public Accountant.

Gunnip also announced that  Jacqueline Doody has been promoted to Senior Manager in the  Entrepreneurial Services Department.
Jackie joined Gunnip & Company in 2012. She specializes in providing tax planning and preparation and financial statement preparation services to small business clients. She is a graduate of the University of Delaware and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Cooke named to Delaware Tech board


Col. Joseph A. Cooke, Jr., the Delaware Army National Guard’s deputy chief of staff for personnel, will serve a three-year term on the Board of Trustees for Delaware Technical Community College.

Before his current assignment, he served in several leadership positions, including Joint Staff vice chief of staff, recruiting and retention commander, and deputy chief of staff for information management.

Cooke is filling a vacancy created by the retirement of Brig.Gen. Ernest G. Talbert Jr., who served on the board since 2017. Trustees Mike Hare and Diane Glenn were also confirmed by the Senate this month to new three-year terms.  

Engineers of the Year announced

The Delaware Engineering Society announced the 2024 Delaware Young Engineer of the Year, Government Engineer of the Year, and Engineer of the Year.  The awards are nominated by those in the engineering industry in the State of Delaware and are selected by the past presidents of NSPE-DE.  


Recipients are Preston Lee Engineer of Year; Shanté Hastings, Government; and Breanna Kovach, Young Engineer.

Lee earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering in 1969 from the University of Delaware. 

After graduating, Lee worked for the Delaware Water and Air Resources Commission (DWARC) and later at the consulting engineering firm VanDemark & Lynch, Inc. He then joined Edward H. Richarson Associates, focusing on designing water and wastewater facilities in multiple states.

 In 1975, he co-founded Tatman & Lee Associates, a civil engineering firm known for wastewater treatment systems. 

The firm was acquired by Woodward-Clyde Consultants and later by URS Corporation, where Lee served as Vice President. He semi-retired in 2001 to focus on project management and engineering through his own business, 


Hastings is the Deputy Secretary/Chief Engineer for the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT), where she has worked since graduating from the University of Delaware in 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering. 

Shanté is responsible for implementing of the department’s $650 million annual Capital Transportation Program delivered by her team of 450 staff statewide. She also serves as the Secretary’s designee on national policy issues and is the Department’s liaison with the Federal Highway Administration.

Kovach is a Group Engineer with the Project Development North section at the Delaware Department of Transportation.

She graduated with honors from Temple University with her BS in Civil Engineering in 2011 and began her career at DelDOT working as a project engineer, designing road projects. In 2016, Breanna became a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Delaware and was promoted to Project Manager. She later obtained her MBA from Wilmington University with a concentration in Organizational Leadership and was promoted to Group Engineer in 2018.