Sussex Profile puts focus on economic progress

Sussex County Council members unveil the 2020 Sussex Profile at a luncheon held Tuesday in Georgetown. From left, councilmen Samuel Wilson Jr., John Rieley, Michael Vincent, Irwin “I.G.” Burton III and Douglas Hudson. (Delaware State News/Glenn Rolfe)

GEORGETOWN — Hot off the press, the 2020 Sussex County Profile has economic development covered.

Long-running collaboration of Sussex County government and Independent NewsMedia Inc. produced the 24th edition of the Sussex Profile, a glossy, 64-page magazine that, like its 23 predecessors, thrusts the county’s economic progress in the spotlight.

Sussex County leaders, businesses, advertisers and representatives of Sussex communities got their first look at the 2020 Sussex Profile at an unveiling Tuesday at the Sussex County Association of Realtors.

“This has happened year after year after year, and it’s a wonderful occasion for us and the county council to celebrate all of the good things that are taking place in Sussex County,” said Sussex County Administrator Todd Lawson. “We use this Profile all of the time, handing out this information to people that are interested in what is taking place here in Sussex, especially designed towards economic development and all of the exciting stories that are contained in the Profile. It’s a great tool for us. We appreciate the partnership.”

Sussex County Administrator Todd Lawson speaks at the 2020 Sussex Profile unveiling luncheon Tuesday.

This year’s focus spans the spectrum of business, education, health care and manufacturing, among others, with an overriding theme of economic development.

Darel LaPrade, publisher of the Sussex Profile, said the publication deviates from standard news production, where the mode is to record what has just happened.

“But with the Sussex Profile, that is not the case. The Profile is not about the past but about the future,” said Mr. LaPrade. “The wisest of our presidents, Abraham Lincoln, once said, ‘The best way to predict your future is to create it.’ Nowadays, with the world far more unpredictable, Honest Abe’s sage observation is more meaningful than ever. On every page of this publication it is evident Sussex County’s leaders are actively heeding Lincoln’s astute advice. Whether from government, business, education or health care, people across the county are engaged in building a better, richer future.”

Showcased on the 2020 Sussex Profile’s cover is Crystal Steel Fabricators, which has evolved from a single-shop location on Old Racetrack Road in Delmar, Delaware, 28 years ago to an international presence today.

“Crystal Steel Fabricators, the subject of this year’s cover story, has a successful history and interesting record of past projects,” said Mr. LaPrade. “But what seems most exciting to me is the company’s interest in offshore wind power, a burgeoning enterprise that is sure to help life in our collective paths forward.

Kathy Wig, executive assistant for Crystal Steel Fabricators Inc., and Sussex County Economic Development Director William Pfaff flank the cover shot of the 2020 Sussex Profile, unveiled at a luncheon Tuesday. Crystal Steel is the showcased cover story of this year’s Profile.

The tagline on virtually every page, story and advertisement “promotes the idea of a better future, a greater tomorrow, or preparing students for their future,” Mr. LaPrade said.

The focus on the future of healthcare encompasses changes aimed at meeting the needs of future.

“Just after opening a state-of-the-art hospital, leaders at Bayhealth acknowledge the job is not over. Hence, they are working as partners with Nemours and Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children to bring world class services to our county for the very young and very old,” said Mr. LaPrade.

“Beebe Healthcare also continues growing, and plans call for an expansion in Milton. This new step is in addition to the more than $200 million Beebe is already investing in Rehoboth, Millville and at the main campus in Lewes. Then on the west side of the county the merger between Seaford-based Nanticoke Health Services and Peninsula Regional Health Systems exponentially expands access to care for residents throughout the county and will ensure enhances in technology, broader treatment options.”

In addition to directories on business resources, chambers of commerce, utilities, healthcare and more, the publication features stories on the county’s wastewater treatment expansion in western Sussex and agriculture and business developments in the county.