Examining Rochester's History of Discrimination
MEET THE PANELISTS
Dennis Bassett retired December 31, 2021, as the Director of Customer Operations at Ortho Clinical Diagnostics in Rochester. In this role he was responsible for the directing the activities of sales support teams, including Customer Service, Contracting, and the Sales Associate Program. Prior to joining Ortho Clinical Diagnostics, Dennis held a variety of executive level positions at Bausch and Lomb, including Vice President of Field Sales and Vice President of Sales Development and Customer Relations. Dennis also held a variety of senior level sales positions at Eastman Kodak Company and served as the Assistant to a Corporate Vice President. Dennis began his sales career at IBM in 1970.
Dennis earned his Bachelor of Arts degree at Knoxville College in 1970 and has completed a variety of Executive Training Programs. In July 2020, he completed his term as Board Chair of Geva Theatre Center’s Board of Trustees and is currently an active member of several boards, including Western Regional Off-Track Betting, the George Eastman Museum, the Rochester Police Foundation, and a trustee of Aenon Baptist Church. He is also a past board member of the American Heart Association, Rochester Area Community Foundation, and Monroe Community Foundation. He lives in Rochester with his wife, Mary, is an avid golfer, and enjoys spending time with his four grandchildren.
Rochester native Robert J. Duffy began as Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce president and Chief Executive Officer January 1, 2015. Prior to coming to Greater Rochester Chamber, Duffy served as New York lieutenant governor from January 2011 to December 2014. Duffy previously served as Rochester mayor from January 2006 to January 2011 and as Rochester police chief from March 1998 to April 2005.
During his tenure as Rochester mayor, Duffy was widely recognized for reducing the cost of government, improving services, lowering tax rates, and attracting millions of dollars in private-sector investments.
As lieutenant governor, Duffy chaired the Regional Economic Development Councils aimed at rebuilding New York's economy and having local/regional leaders identify their respective funding priorities.
Duffy also played an instrumental role on the governor's Mandate Relief Council. He chaired a series of statewide mandate relief hearings, which sought input from local government officials and constituents on the statutory and regulatory burdens faced by local governments and school districts.
In May of 2012, Duffy was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. The medal honors notable American citizens who demonstrate a life committed to community service.
Duffy holds two degrees from Monroe Community College, a Bachelor of Science from Rochester Institute of Technology, and a Master of Arts from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University.
Duffy also serves on a variety of boards, including the SUNY Board of Trustees, Co-Chair of the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council, the Center for Governmental Research, Business Council of New York State, US Chamber of Commerce Council of 100, AVANGRID, and others.
David Powe has over 30 years of experience and expertise in implementing the philosophies, methodologies, and tools of Operations Excellence (OpEx). Prior to launching AIOPX Management Consulting in 2011, he held strategic leadership positions including Director of Manufacturing, Director of Supply Chain Management, Plant Mgr. and Project Mgr., with industry leaders in manufacturing, chemical engineering and financial services. Having led large organizations, David understands how to engage and energize teams, creating a culture of operational excellence. Since launching AIOPX, he has specialized in tailoring approaches to OpEx for small and mid-sized businesses in numerous markets and industries. He launched the first-of-its-kind peer learning group for Minority and Women Owned Businesses – The Procurement Ready Roundtable.
David has an MBA, from the A. B. Freeman School of Business and a BS in Chemical Engineering, both from Tulane University. He’s a GE trained Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt and Certified Business Professional by the Aji Network. David has worked closely with senior and line management of organizations of all sizes and in diverse business functions, both domestically and internationally producing extraordinary results!
David is married to his lifelong soul mate, Evelyn and they have three adult sons. He is a committed servant of our local community and supports many charitable causes through his church, the Rochester Black Catholic Coalition, the Knights of Columbus and the Rochester Rotary. He is a dedicated networker and is past president of the Rochester Professional Consultants Network, current president of the Greater Rochester Black Business Alliance and Rochester Rotary vice-president for School #8. In his leisure time he enjoys spending time with his family, watching and attending sporting events, playing golf and all forms of music.
Dr. Ruth Scott is heralded for giving voice to change, her words and actions long inspiring shifts in thought across entire communities. She is a poet, an orator, an educator, a consultant and a one-time school administrator and political figure who has advised U.S. Presidents, governors and community leaders. She was the first woman of color elected to the Rochester City Council and was later named the council's first African American President. Dr. Scott has been influential in many ways including but not limited to being a member of the Rochester Business Opportunity Center Board, designing and delivering classes for the Business Ownership Training School for the City of Rochester and serving as a member of the Rochester Economic Development Committee from its inception until 2020.
In Raising Confident Children in Challenging Times, Dr. Scott draws from lessons learned firsthand to help parents and other care providers (i.e., teachers, mentors) leverage their innate talents to then positively influence children, teens and young adults.
Dr. Ruth Scott has made it her life’s work to uplift the human spirit while pursuing change for the betterment of all.