Dennis Mitchell joins the Think Tank Board, bringing with him a wide range of experience in industry.
He was born in New York and got his education in the Midwest. Upon securing his economics degree at the University of Kansas, he moved into the sales field. He is a disciple of “nothing happens until somebody sells something”.
He joined a very large manufacturer’s rep company in the Midwest who specialized in the sale of electronic components to manufactures. After a few years with the company, he became the sales manager for the business that generated about $30 million a year in sales and he had a dozen salespeople reporting to him. In the early 70s, the consumer electronic business went to the Far East and he sensed there was an opportunity. He visited Asia for several weeks and came back to his employer, suggesting that the company start a branch in Taiwan. The management did not care for the idea and so Dennis resigned, and went to Taiwan to start his own manufacturer’s rep company selling electronic components to the major consumer electronic companies. TV companies such as RCA, Motorola, Philco, Zenith, Admiral, all had facilities there and became his customers.
Upon returning to the states Dennis was contacted by some of the companies he represented in the Far East and asked to consider starting a rep company in Florida which he did. The company is still in business and doing well in spite of the migration of manufacturing jobs from the United States. Several years ago, he turned this business over to his son who had a successful career in another field (Anderson Consulting).
Now that Dennis has time to pursue other interests, he is very involved with nonprofit organizations such as Big Cat Rescue where he is volunteered for more than 10 years. He also serves as a counselor with Score–a nonprofit resource of the SBA that mentors small businesses and also serves as treasurer for the Hillsborough Volunteer Administrator Association (HAVA). He is a church musician, enthusiastic tennis player in a very humble golfer.