Dennis J. (Denny) Barnett is Vice President of Partnership for Children where he oversees administrative and programmatic functions of a metropolitan-wide program in Kansas City that provides essential services to children and youth. He has been the lead staff person for Kansas City's Promise since 1998. In tandem with directing Kansas City's Promise, Barnett also served three years as the Director of the Volunteer Connection, a collaborative initiative of the four Kansas City area Volunteer Centers.
Prior to his work in Kansas City, Dennis Barnett was the President/CE0 of Volunteers of America of the Dakotas for six years, a multi-service agency that serves low-income children and youth through early childhood education programs, child care centers, character education and inter-generational programs. During this same period he contracted with the national office of Volunteers of America to provide consultation and technical assistance in the start up and development of effective volunteer programs to 400 VOA programs nationwide.
Barnett served as Deputy Executive Director of The National Volunteer Center (later merging into the Points of Light Foundation) for five years where he was the liaison between the national office and Volunteer Centers across the country. He coordinated the first two international exchanges of Volunteer Centers and Volunteer Bureaux. Barnett wrote and administered a multi-million dollar grant from the Kellogg Foundation to strengthen and expand the network of Volunteer Centers across the United States.
Prior to the his work at the National Volunteer Center, Barnett served three years as Executive Director of the Volunteer and Information Center, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and a year as Program Director at Sojourn House, an agency serving youth in at risk environments.
Barnett is involved in a variety of volunteer activities locally and nationally. He is currently the President of the Association for Volunteer Administration (AVA), an international membership association that promotes professionalism and strengthens leadership in volunteerism. He has been an AVA member for 20 years has served on the AVA Board of Directors for four years.