Eastern Gateway Launching Dennison School of Business in Spring 2023

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Eastern Gateway Community College board of trustees on Wednesday accepted a $250,000 donation from Christine and Phillip Dennison of Youngstown to establish the Christine and Phillip Dennison School of Business and Leadership.

The school will launch for spring semester 2023 beginning in January, according to a press release.

“This generous donation from two true community servants is very validating of the work our faculty, staff and students put into ensuring a high-quality business program, both in person and online, is offered at Eastern Gateway,” said Eastern Gateway President Michael Geoghegan. “We also hope to inspire our business students, with tremendous role models like the Dennisons, to achieve great things in their careers and in giving back to their communities.”

Christine Dennison retired from teaching full time after eight years in the marketing department at Youngstown State University’s Williamson College of Business Administration, and was appointed an Eastern Gateway trustee in 2015. She currently chairs the board’s student success committee. Phillip Dennison is a principal emeritus with Packer Thomas, a regional accounting firm.

“Community colleges are the backbone of our communities, and business and leadership are the heart,” said Christine Dennison. “Giving back to the college that continues to work tirelessly to enhance our communities is an incredible opportunity for us. It is an honor to be a part of Eastern Gateway’s story and the next generation of business leaders and professionals.”

“The business and leadership programs at Eastern Gateway Community College succeed because of the college’s students, faculty, and leadership. We are extremely thankful to be a part of helping students achieve their goals and career aspirations,” added Phillip Dennison.

In January, the name of the school will appear on formal college documents, such as reports and student records.

“Business students and faculty will benefit greatly from the generous support of the Dennison’s donation,” said John Crooks, senior vice president and chief academic officer at Eastern Gateway. “The Dennison School of Business and Leadership will advance the college’s vision of ‘Creating Opportunities and Changing Lives.’ It is fitting to name this school after solid supporters of our students and local business professionals and owners.”

In addition to her service with Eastern Gateway, Christine Dennison was a planned giving consultant to both United Way of Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley and the Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley, and volunteered on the United Way’s fund allocation committee. She was a board member and chaired a capital campaign for the Youngstown Hearing & Speech Center. Prior to that, she worked 15 years at IBM in Youngstown and Detroit in administration and marketing divisions. She also was a secondary high school teacher for six years. She was a member of Leadership Youngstown and an Athena nominee. She earned her bachelor’s at YSU where she also earned an MBA. She earned her M.S. in education at Edinboro University in Pennsylvania.

Phillip Dennison is chairman of the board at Western Reserve Health Foundation and serves as a board member and treasurer of Youngstown Cityscape, receiving its Grass Roots award. He is chairman of a committee of Grow Mahoning Valley, Eastgate Regional Council of Governments, and is past chair of the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber. He chaired a successful, $3 million annual campaign with the United Way of Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley. He also was a member of Leadership Youngstown. Dennison earned a bachelor’s from YSU.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.