- Richland Washington
Penn State University
Dennis Solensky is a well-known motivational speaker and leadership expert. At the heart of his success is his comprehensive community outreach program. This was first developed as a result of his experience at The College of Wooster where he was a leader on the football team and vice-president of his fraternity. Dennis has adopted the belief that “if you can write well, you can speak well.” And the College of Wooster is one of the only undergraduate Universities in the country that require dissertations to be completed during ones junior and senior year. In fact one-half of a student’s grade their senior year is based on their performance on, and completion of their Independent Study dissertation. Major emphasis is placed on independent research and writing skills. There is also a presentation component.
Learning to conduct independent research and write well prepared Dennis for the grant writing that he accomplished in getting Medina County, Ohio its first ever public transit grants from the state of Ohio and Federal Transit Administration. In his next position as the General Manager of the Portage Area RTA, Dennis was the first ever PARTA employee and over his six and one-half years there he completely built the organization from top to bottom. During that time he spearheaded community transit advocacy and regained PARTA's respect locally. He repaired PARTA's relationship with the Federal Transit Administration and the Ohio Department of Transportation, as well as all of their contract agencies. This resulted in ridership more than doubling during that time.
Dennis heavily credits his experience at Wooster for his successful career in public service. It launched his career in public service, and he is forever grateful for that intense and rewarding experience.