Terry A. Strine
A series of career business and political opportunities prepared Terry for this most important leadership role of all – founding and leading, Leadership Delaware, Inc. (CEO from 2008-2020).
A graduate of Franklin and Marshall College, Terry was recruited out of college by IBM as a Data Processing Marketing Representative, and assigned to Wilmington, Delaware. A “high number” in the draft soon encouraged him to enlist in the U.S. Coast Guard, where, after Officer Candidate School (OCS) in Yorktown, Virginia, he was ordered to a Cutter stationed in Portland, Maine. There he met, wooed, won, and married his wife, Sandy. Three years, four months, and 17 days later, (but who’s counting!) he returned to civilian life and IBM, this time to Dover, Delaware.
With a promotion pending to a position involving extensive travel, Terry left IBM to become a stockbroker in Wilmington, first with Francis I. du Pont, then with Butcher & Sherrerd. He later moved on to become a commercial investment real estate broker, which quickly morphed to becoming a full time investor in real estate.
During his several successful careers, Terry’s passion for public policy and politics grew, and in 2003, he was nominated to become Chairman of the Delaware State Republican Committee. Some have described this position to be one of the “toughest, least rewarding jobs in the world,” but the opposite was true for Terry. “Tough” to be sure, but wonderfully rewarding in the many friends, contacts, and priceless experiences which Chairmanship brought. As State GOP Chair, he saw the strengths and weaknesses, the challenges and temptations afforded political leaders, key staffers, bureaucrats, lobbyists and elected officials in both parties, in Dover and Washington, D.C.
In 2008, Terry stepped down as Delaware State GOP Chair, and having seen leadership at the local, state, and national levels in business, finance, and the political world, he asked himself, “what’s next…how can I make a difference?” Why not identify, recruit, mentor, and network the best and brightest young leaders in the First State, give them the tools, the contacts, and the know-how they will need to achieve higher levels of leadership in every area of our Delaware community? Governor Pete du Pont and Terry’s wife, Sandy, encouraged, urged, supported his thinking, and thus was born Leadership Delaware, Inc.
Without question, Terry’s most important leadership role which he has been privileged to experience, has been founding Leadership Delaware, Inc.