Illinois Fire Service Institute


dennis spice

Senior Advisor for Corporate Relations and Development

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In the role of, Senior Advisor to the University of Illinois Fire Service Institute in matters relating to Corporate Relations and Development, Dennis is responsible for establishing and cultivating partnerships with the private sector that will benefit both the companies and the institute. Under his leadership, Dennis has dramatically increased the number of new partners to work with IFSI to strengthen and broaden training programs.

While Dennis serves as a contractor for IFSI, he is also president of Institutional Advisors, Ltd., a consulting firm he began in 1995 which provides marketing, business development, strategic planning, and financial consultation to small and mid-sized businesses. Dennis was a founding partner and managing member of Open Prairie Ventures I, LP, a $40 million venture capital fund that focused on investments in Midwest-based seed and start-up companies. He has served on a number of boards of directors, including Infoblox, Cernium,, ReVas, Innovative Security Systems, Inc. and Computrol.

Prior to founding his own company, Mr. Spice was Executive Director of the State Universities Retirement System of Illinois (SURS), where he was responsible for management of $5.5 billion in fund assets. Before that, he was Employee Benefits Manager at Eastern Illinois University.

Dennis holds an Associate in Arts degree from the University of the State of New York, a Bachelors in Management from Eastern Illinois University, and an MBA from the Executive MBA Program at the University of Illinois.

He served nine years in the U. S. Marine Corps, including a tour of duty in Vietnam.
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Champaign, IL 61820
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