From the Perspectives Newsletter: Director Spotlight

From the Perspectives Newsletter: Director Spotlight

Social Work background gives Wells unique voice on PfP Board

From the Summer 2017 Perspectives Newsletter

With a background in community mental health, Dennis Wells provides a unique perspective as a member of the Places for People Board of Directors.

“My experience in the field as a community mental health worker has given me first-hand knowledge of the work that many of PfP’s staff perform, as well as a sense of the scope of challenges that face our clients,” Wells said.

“When we discuss larger management issues at board meetings, I always have in mind how this might impact the front-line workers and our clients.”

Wells has been involved in community health since 1990 when he worked for the Missouri Department of Mental Health’s homeless outreach services, which was established by Dr. Gary Morse. “When I went back to school to get my Masters in Social Work with an emphasis in not-for-profit management, I helped Dr. Morse set up Community Alternatives as a non-profit agency and have been involved ever since.”

A longtime board member at Community Alternatives, Wells helped unite the two organizations during their merger, and joined the Places for People Board of Directors, serving as Board Secretary since the merger in 2011.

“I am proud of our successful merger of two different agencies into one powerhouse of expert care for people in great need. Any merger has its bumps and hurdles, but the dedication of Joe Yancey, Gary Morse, and our whole management team have guided us to the place of excellence that we are today.”

Wells serves the as Pastoral Associate and Director of Music at St. Vincent DePaul Parish in Soulard. He also teaches music at St. Frances Cabrini Academy, along with his wife, Teri.

In addition to playing music, Wells also enjoys photography, gardening and cooking in his free time.

When thinking about Places for People, the three words that come to Wells’ mind are “passion, dedication and excellence.”

“Most people are aware that there are a tremendous number of people in our community who desperately need mental health care and social services. Places for People does not sit back and wait for people to come to us; we are out in the community, bringing services to those who need them.”

Wells is proud to be a part of the Places for People community.

“I love being a part of such an outstanding organization that is helping people every single day to better their own lives. I am inspired by the passion and talent of our staff, and by the dedication of my fellow board members.”