Frances B. Sellers Award – Reunion 2010
When De’Andre Salter followed his sister, Cynthia Salter-Lewis C’88, to Drew, who knew that he would ultimately succeed in not just one, but multiple fields: business, philanthropy, ministry, and scholarship? And when Cynthia won the Frances B. Sellers Award in 1998, who knew that they would keep it in the family? But although De’Andre may have followed in his sister’s footsteps, his achievements are very much his own.
De’Andre says his economics professor, Dr. Vivian Bull, was a major influence in his life; she encouraged him to embrace culture while teaching him international economics in the Brussels Semester. It was not his economics major, however, but 1992’s sour economy that drew him into the insurance field—he was interested in a Wall Street career, but Chubb, where he had interned, offered him a job. From there he moved to Crum & Forster, where he developed, launched, and managed the directors and officers line of business. He is now chief executive officer of his own firm, Professional Risk Solutions LLC, based in Somerset, New Jersey, specializing in directors and officers liability insurance for publicly traded companies. Since its founding in 2001, his company has grown to gross written premiums of $70 million and opened offices in Pennsylvania and Florida. De’Andre, who was named to The Network Journal’s 40 Under Forty in 2005, is often quoted in the press, is in demand as a conference speaker, and also serves as an expert witness in directors and officers litigation.
His successful business career is not the whole story. For years De’Andre resisted the call to Christian ministry, but he finally embarked upon a five-year apprenticeship in 2001. Five years later, following his grandmother (Newark’s first woman pastor) and his mother, he became a pastor, and now serves without compensation as senior pastor of The Tabernacle, a non-denominational ministry in South Plainfield, New Jersey. He holds a Masters in Biblical Studies from The Kings Seminary in Los Angeles, and since 2007 his summers have included studying theology as a Fellow of Keble College, Oxford.
In 2007, De’Andre and his wife, novelist Terry Jones Salter, created the Salter Foundation for Hope. The Foundation, still in its formative stage, helps to spur economic development by providing opportunity to those in need, and supports Christian institutions that do likewise. De’Andre says he gains his greatest satisfaction from being able to help others by creating jobs and treating people well, and he especially enjoys the connectivity of ministry.
De’Andre and Terry live in Chester, New Jersey with their four children: Dejahn (13), Destiny (12), Dorian (10), and Davin, newly adopted from Ethiopia at age five. They all enjoy traveling, especially in England, Italy, and Hawaii.