We as a community, and as individuals each with our own unique and special personal relationship, deeply mourn the recent loss of our dear friend, neighbor, and local superstar Delia Rose Bridges Denny.
Delia touched and improved the lives of so many in our county past and present. So, please let us together take a moment to celebrate the fortunate gift we enjoyed in Delia’s almost eighty-nine years of “truly living” here in Talbot County.
Delia was a beautiful, elegant, intelligent, and inspiring human being. Publicly she was a trailblazer for professional women, serving as a cherished mentor to many women entering the banking business. Delia was a highly respected, groundbreaking community leader in good company with many other superstars like Mrs. Alton Jones, Maggie Ferree, Shirley Gooch, Bette Kenzie, Blenda Armistead, Alice Ryan and so many others.
Personally, for me, and I am sure for many of you, she was a dedicated friend and neighbor who radiated love, humor, support and tolerance for me as an individual and a special zest for living life to its fullest. I always wanted to be around and as full of life as Delia. She was a joy.
Hello Delia Denny, we could write a book! In fact, many of us – her loving family members and friends — often encouraged Delia to do just that. Delia’s firsthand and expert (sometimes embarrassing) knowledge of local history, people, and connections was unparalleled. More than anything Delia dearly loved her family, her friends, and cherished her home off the Miles River here on the Eastern Shore.
To follow please enjoy a few quotes from several community leaders, friends and finally, at the end, a more comprehensive history of Delia’s leadership roles, awards and distinctions here in Talbot County. I might add that one of her favorite triumphs, not covered below, was the title of “Miss Miles River” at age sixteen. What a vibrant human being…we were truly blessed to have her in our lives.
“I’m blessed to have had the opportunity to spend time with Delia over the years. She was kind, loving and always greeted everyone with warmth. Under all that sweetness was a woman who deeply loved her community and worked tirelessly nearly her entire life to enhance our way life in Talbot County. We’re all beneficiaries of her efforts and her spirit lives on through the work of the YMCA and the 15 other charities she worked closely with as a volunteer. “ Robbie Gill
” Delia made things happen. In the non-profit world, if she was on your board or committee, you had immediate credibility and were likely to be very successful. A positive influence on all who met her a knew her. “ John Valliant
“Delia was empathetic and compassionate. You could mention a need to her and she was immediately looking for a way to help. She was intelligent and able to grasp and tackle the many jobs that banking presented to her. She was quite obviously a trailblazer and leader as witness the many first leadership roles she had as a woman in our county. She was the first women president of the United Fund, and the first woman president of the Talbot County YMCA as well as the first woman recipient of the J. Howard Anthony Community Service Award.” Tom Hill
“Delia Denny always had a twinkle in her eyes, a bright smile for everyone and always inquired about one’s well-being. She was a volunteer/community leader par excellence in many areas and a good competitor inculcating humor, harmony and good will along the way. Life in Delia’s world, including golf, was a “bowl of cherries, not a vale of tears.” She made it that way in her multiple involvements throughout Talbot County. Well done, good and humble servant. May she RIP.” Kay Perkins
“Delia Denny was one of the most brilliant protectors of our Easton and of Talbot County, in banking and beyond. Her expertise, her proven commitment to community endeavors—we admired her perfection. She was humble and a friend to all. And she could tell a mean joke!” Patty and Clayton Fisher
“Delia loved her family, adored her friends, and embraced the entire community.” Gail and John Obrien
“Delia was a community leader. She volunteered her time to many organizations. Among her favorite organizations were the YMCA and Easton Memorial Hospital. She gave many hours of her time and her expertise to the Easton hospital foundation board. She also served on the capital campaign committee for the YMCA in the early 1990s to raise the money for a new addition including a second swimming pool. One of my favorite memories of Delia was a publicity photograph by a photographer from the Star Democrat when the capital campaign kicked off. As an attention grabbing stunt, the members of the campaign committee jumped into the old pool at the Y, fully clothed, including suits, ties and shoes. When everyone jumped in the pool in unison, David Hill inadvertently kicked Delia in the ankle causing swelling and decolorization that would last for some time. Delia never let me forget that stunt! When a volunteer was needed for a community event or organization Delia was always eager to help. The community will miss her, as I will.” Charlie Capute
Work History: Executive Vice President of Easton Bank and Trust; Part of the Executive Management team, was at different stages Business Development Officer, Marketing Manager, Compliance Officer, Human Resources Manager, Branch Manager, Loan Officer at EBT; Began her banking career in 1952 with Easton National Bank which merged with Maryland National Bank in 1962; Executive Secretary in the Trust Department, Senior Trust Officer responsible for 19 branches at MNB; In 1985 made Assistant Vice President of Private Banking in Easton, manage private banking for the entire Eastern Shore; In 1990 elected Vice President and Manager of MNB’s Easton Branch. As a wedding planner, with the help of her daughter Beth, Delia also helped dozens of local brides, grooms and their families navigate through planning their special event then, with Delia’s guidance, relax and enjoy their very special day.
Banking Awards and Distinctions: National Association of Bank Women, Regional Scholarship Award in recognition of outstanding merit based on her scholastic record and professional achievement (one of 15 in U.S.); Attended the National Trust School at Northwestern University; First recipient of the Council of Professional Women in Banking and Finance Lifetime Achievement Award 2013.
Other Awards and Distinctions: 1975 St. Michaels High Distinguished Alumna Award; 1982 Soroptimist International of Talbot County Woman of the Year; 1985 Talbot County Chamber of Commerce Business Woman of the Year Award; 1995 first recipient of the Woman of the Year Award; Daughters of American Revolution Excellence in Community Service Award; first woman President of the Untied Fund of Talbot County; first woman president of the Talbot County YMCA; first woman recipient of the J. Howard Anthony Community Service Award; Paul Harris Fellow (Rotary Foundation); 2012 BSA Distinguished Citizen Award; 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award.
Delia has served on the board of 16 area organizations including the Memorial Hospital Foundation, Memorial Hospital Association, Chesapeake College Foundation, Wesley College Board of Trustees, Untied Fund of Talbot County, St. Mark’s Ministry to Aged, American Red Cross, The Country School, The Academy of Arts, The American Cancer Society, and her beloved Talbot County YMCA. She was appointed to the MD Commission for Women; MD Financial Disclosure Advisory Board; and Talbot County Board of Education. Delia was also a member of The Talbot Country Club, The Soroptimists, the Royal Oak Garden Club and The Festival of Trees Committee.