Certificate in Public Engagement Instructors

We are pleased to have the following instructors:


Patty Gentrup has been in direct service or as a consultant for local governments for 25 years, including six years as a city administrator. She is a skilled facilitator, working with governing bodies and other organizations to develop their vision, mission, and goals. She also has extensive experience in managing public engagement processes, ranging from community strategic planning to infrastructure development to neighborhood plans. Patty has a bachelor's degree in journalism and a masters in public administration, both from the University of Kansas. Patty and her husband Gene own i9 Sports in Kansas City's Northland and have two daughters, Meg and Abigail.


Jennifer Wilding has served as director of the nonpartisan, nonprofit organization Consensus since 2003. Consensus puts the public in public policy. It provides the information, process and safe, neutral space necessary to engage the public in decision-making. Jennifer has worked in the public policy and civic engagement field for about 25 years. She led the organization’s development of a business plan for earned income, which saw earned income grow from 0% to about 70% of the Consensus budget in just seven years.

Jennifer is project director for the Kansas City site of Creating Community Solutions, the national dialogue on mental health. She is a member of various national networks related to deliberative democracy. She has led projects for national clients such as the U.S. Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution, MacNeil/Lehrer Productions, and the Kettering Foundation, and directed extensive strategic planning projects for libraries in Iowa, Oregon, Indiana, and Washington State. Locally, clients have included the Kansas City Kansas Community College, the Mid-America Regional Council, Johnson County Commission, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, and many others. She teaches skills such as facilitation, advanced facilitation, youth/adult partnerships, and how to moderate deliberative forums.

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