David Grimaldi, a/k/a The Human Lightning Rod. (Definition: A lightning rod is someone who attracts a lot of criticism, in particular to shield other people, like a literal lightning rod diverts lightning harmlessly into the ground).
The 'other people' in this scenario is NCC Exec Tom Gordon, whose political saga is well documented. When Gordon.2 won election in 2012 after a 7-8 year hiatus, there were some that wanted to go after him. The problem was that there was nothing there, not even the barest soupcon of controversy that had not been previously detailed at ad nauseum in years past.
(Would that our largest city presently functioned with the Swiss clock mechanics of the County operation. But that is a story for another day).
With no smoking gun to go after Gordon, Plan B was then to assail anyone close to him politically.
Grimaldi was the easy target; a young, urbane and articulate 'carpetbagger' from New Yaawk with a decided edge who (early on) was unfamiliar with The Delaware Way.
Why would Tom Gordon hire such a newcomer to be his Chief Administrative Officer and tasked with day-to-day operations? Three years into the job, Grimaldi's performance is overshadowing past political cacophany.
Let's visit Mr. Grimaldi's credentials and the ascendant timeline.
2005-2009 - Morgan-Stanley, NYC
Managed financial assets of high net worth families and institutions. Grimaldi ranked #1 among national peers in assets under management ($100 million) during all 5 years with the firm
2009-2012 - Managing Director, US Real Estate Portfolio - China MinMetals
In 2009 he left Morgan Stanley for MinMetals. This may be more info than my dear reader requires, but it's beneficial to give one a scope of Beijing-headquartered China Minmetals. The 65 year old company primarily engages in exploration, mining, smelting, processing and trading for metals and minerals. Also it has interests in finance, metallurgic technology and real estate. MinMetals has offices in 34 nations with 177,000 employees.
The Holiday Inn Select on Naamans Rd was owned by MinMetals. It was hemorrhaging $50,000 + monthly and to understate, underperforming. Grimaldi was tasked to move to DE and suture the wound. After making deep cuts and restructuring the management team, the hotel returned to positive cash flow by month 4. While running the operation, the hotel experienced triple-digit profit growth and recorded the highest profit margin in its history. After the turnaround, MinMetals saw hidden potential uncovered by Grimaldi's efforts and decided to upgrade. Grimaldi oversaw the $10 million renovation project which is now known as the Crowne Plaza Wilmington North.
In 2010, through Ciro Popitti, the then liquor licenses attorney and present Register of Wills, Grimaldi was introduced to Tom Gordon. The latter asked him to join the Police Athletic League Board as treasurer. The PAL Board, founded by Gordon, was experiencing severe financial difficulties which were public. It was nearly insolvent. After a year, PAL was turned around and accumulated the biggest operating surplus in the non-profits history.
Gordon witnessed Grimaldi's work first hand and asked him to become his 2012 Campaign Manager. Although outraised 4-to-1 and running against an incumbent endorsed by the D's, Gordon prevailed. At age 34, his Campaign Manager was sworn in as NCC CAO, youngest in County history.
2012-Present - NCC CAO
Grimaldi has had great influence on the following:
Structural deficits have been eliminated and NCC has produced an operating surplus in each year in office, while keeping the County Executive's pledge to not raise taxes
Restructuring the County's debt and realized a $12 million savings, making it the most successful bond deal in county history. It also allowed NCC to shrink the year-over-year budget for only the 4th time in history
Restructuring of the county employee 457 plan to avoid $600,000 in surrender fees
After research Grimaldi found that financial statements were wrong and misrepresented the County's investment risk. 16% of the reserve portfolio were in junk bonds. By moving to UBS and bringing investments in line with financial statements, the risk of county investments was reduced. This saved hundreds of thousands of dollars per year in investment fees.
A prime mover in the County's first-ever Comprehensive Economic Development Plan, the Anti-Heroin marketing campaign, Comprehensive Ethics Reform, the Open Government platform, new County Website, Rt. 9 Innovation Center and revitalization project.
5 Months down the road: The Delaware Stock Exchange: Grimaldi's greatest service to the County and the State
The $15 million bond to birth this exchange passed County Council unanimously.. There is absolutely no jeopardy to County taxpayers. Says the CAO of the bond "we are basically a pass through". The timing for the opening is approximately 5 months
This revolutionary idea will in the words of Gordon and Grimaldi have a similar impact on "The Corporate Capital of The World" as did the 1972 Bank Act under Pete du Pont, DE Chancery Court and our innovative incorporation laws, (the latter thought out by JJ Raskob and P.S. du Pont in the early 1920's).
The Exchange, rumored to be headquartered in The DelleDonne Building on DE Ave, will allow start-up companies ready access to a public exchange where they can raise up to $50 million over a period of 12 months. The aforementioned Economic Development Plan had targeted the lack of access to venture capital (VC) as an impediment to the County's growth.
Start-ups can't go to a bank and say "loan me $25 million for my boffo idea". The bankers would be rolling their eyes and chuckling at the water cooler as the door hits the entrepreneur on his butt. Visionaries need 'risk money', i.e. dollars from venture capitalists. (How do you think Face book or Amazon got started? From Wells Fargo? From WSFS?).
Another great advantage to DE Stock Exchange is that this 'crowd funding' idea will not allow any one investor to control a company (think Shark Tank).
Start up firms follow the money. Some may even stay here to grow, especially with the knowledge the world famous Court of Chancery is a few blocks down the street. There was a void in the market. Not anymore.
The Exchange is a game changer with Delaware-centric significance commensurate to Alexander Hamilton's founding of the national bank, FDR's New Deal or - more simply put - our home grown version of The Marshall Plan.
The First State, once again, lives up to its slogan...with thanks to the Human Lightning Rod.

David Grimaldi, a/k/a The Human Lightning Rod. (Definition: A lightning rod is someone who attracts a lot of criticism, in particular to shield other people, like a literal lightning rod diverts lightning harmlessly into the ground). The 'other people' in this scenario is NCC Exec Tom Gordon, whose political saga is well documented. When Gordon.2 won election in 2012 after a 7-8 year hiatus, there were some that wanted to go after him. The problem was that there was nothing there, not even the barest soupcon of controversy that had not been previously detailed at ad nauseum in years past. (Would that our largest city presently functioned with the Swiss clock mechanics of the County operation. But that is a story for another day). With no smoking gun to go after Gordon, Plan B was then to assail anyone close to him politically. Grimaldi was the easy target; a young, urbane and articulate 'carpetbagger' from New Yaawk with a decided edge who (early on) was unfamiliar with The Delaware Way. Why would Tom Gordon hire such a newcomer to be his Chief Administrative Officer and tasked with day-to-day operations? Three years into the job, Grimaldi's performance is overshadowing past political cacophany. Let's visit Mr. Grimaldi's credentials and the ascendant timeline. 2005-2009 - Morgan-Stanley, NYC Managed financial assets of high net worth families and institutions. Grimaldi ranked #1 among national peers in assets under management ($100 million) during all 5 years with the firm 2009-2012 - Managing Director, US Real Estate Portfolio - China MinMetals In 2009 he left Morgan Stanley for MinMetals. This may be more info than my dear reader requires, but it's beneficial to give one a scope of Beijing-headquartered China Minmetals. The 65 year old company primarily engages in exploration, mining, smelting, processing and trading for metals and minerals. Also it has interests in finance, metallurgic technology and real estate. MinMetals has offices in 34 nations with 177,000 employees. The Holiday Inn Select on Naamans Rd was owned by MinMetals. It was hemorrhaging $50,000 + monthly and to understate, underperforming. Grimaldi was tasked to move to DE and suture the wound. After making deep cuts and restructuring the management team, the hotel returned to positive cash flow by month 4. While running the operation, the hotel experienced triple-digit profit growth and recorded the highest profit margin in its history. After the turnaround, MinMetals saw hidden potential uncovered by Grimaldi's efforts and decided to upgrade. Grimaldi oversaw the $10 million renovation project which is now known as the Crowne Plaza Wilmington North. In 2010, through Ciro Popitti, the then liquor licenses attorney and present Register of Wills, Grimaldi was introduced to Tom Gordon. The latter asked him to join the Police Athletic League Board as treasurer. The PAL Board, founded by Gordon, was experiencing severe financial difficulties which were public. It was nearly insolvent. After a year, PAL was turned around and accumulated the biggest operating surplus in the non-profits history. Gordon witnessed Grimaldi's work first hand and asked him to become his 2012 Campaign Manager. Although outraised 4-to-1 and running against an incumbent endorsed by the D's, Gordon prevailed. At age 34, his Campaign Manager was sworn in as NCC CAO, youngest in County history. 2012-Present - NCC CAO Grimaldi has had great influence on the following: Structural deficits have been eliminated and NCC has produced an operating surplus in each year in office, while keeping the County Executive's pledge to not raise taxes Restructuring the County's debt and realized a $12 million savings, making it the most successful bond deal in county history. It also allowed NCC to shrink the year-over-year budget for only the 4th time in history Restructuring of the county employee 457 plan to avoid $600,000 in surrender fees After research Grimaldi found that financial statements were wrong and misrepresented the County's investment risk. 16% of the reserve portfolio were in junk bonds. By moving to UBS and bringing investments in line with financial statements, the risk of county investments was reduced. This saved hundreds of thousands of dollars per year in investment fees. A prime mover in the County's first-ever Comprehensive Economic Development Plan, the Anti-Heroin marketing campaign, Comprehensive Ethics Reform, the Open Government platform, new County Website, Rt. 9 Innovation Center and revitalization project. 5 Months down the road: The Delaware Stock Exchange: Grimaldi's greatest service to the County and the State The $15 million bond to birth this exchange passed County Council unanimously.. There is absolutely no jeopardy to County taxpayers. Says the CAO of the bond "we are basically a pass through". The timing for the opening is approximately 5 months This revolutionary idea will in the words of Gordon and Grimaldi have a similar impact on "The Corporate Capital of The World" as did the 1972 Bank Act under Pete du Pont, DE Chancery Court and our innovative incorporation laws, (the latter thought out by JJ Raskob and P.S. du Pont in the early 1920's). The Exchange, rumored to be headquartered in The DelleDonne Building on DE Ave, will allow start-up companies ready access to a public exchange where they can raise up to $50 million over a period of 12 months. The aforementioned Economic Development Plan had targeted the lack of access to venture capital (VC) as an impediment to the County's growth. Start-ups can't go to a bank and say "loan me $25 million for my boffo idea". The bankers would be rolling their eyes and chuckling at the water cooler as the door hits the entrepreneur on his butt. Visionaries need 'risk money', i.e. dollars from venture capitalists. (How do you think Face book or Amazon got started? From Wells Fargo? From WSFS?). Another great advantage to DE Stock Exchange is that this 'crowd funding' idea will not allow any one investor to control a company (think Shark Tank). Start up firms follow the money. Some may even stay here to grow, especially with the knowledge the world famous Court of Chancery is a few blocks down the street. There was a void in the market. Not anymore. The Exchange is a game changer with Delaware-centric significance commensurate to Alexander Hamilton's founding of the national bank, FDR's New Deal or - more simply put - our home grown version of The Marshall Plan. The First State, once again, lives up to its slogan...with thanks to the Human Lightning Rod.