Dennis William Wallace

September 23, 1953November 30, 2018

Dennis William Wallace, 65, of Sarasota, Florida, passed away on November 30, 2018. He was born on September 23, 1953 in Elizabeth, New Jersey, to Helen and Frank Wallace.

Dennis attended Roselle Catholic High School in Roselle, New Jersey, and later attended St. John’s University in New York, where he graduated Cum Laude in 1975. He married his wife, Beth, in St. Croix, USVI. They lived in Solebury, Pennsylvania and then moved to Sarasota in 1996.

Dennis enjoyed a successful career in Procurement and Contracts Administration in corporate, academic, and government organizations. He was also a part of USAID EVAC in Saigon, Vietnam.

Dennis was a member of the National Contract Management Association, as well as a member of the Lakewood Ranch Golf and Country Club. He was an avid reader, tennis player, and loved music and theater. He was a devoted husband to his wife of 32 years, Elizabeth, and was known to be intelligently witty, committed to his Jesuitical training and pursuit of knowledge, a skilled public speaker, courageous, caring, and loyal to his friends, family, and colleagues.

Dennis is preceded in death by his parents, Helen and Frank Wallace. He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth (Beth) Wallace, and his aunt, Doris O’Toole.

A Celebration of Life for Dennis will take place on Saturday, January 19, 2019 at 3pm at Robert Toale and Sons Funeral Home at Palms Memorial Park; 170 Honore Ave., Sarasota, FL 34232. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38015; or to Florida Cancer Specialists (FCS) Foundation, 5204 Paylor Lane, Sarasota, FL 34240.


  • Celebration of Life Saturday, January 19, 2019

Dennis William Wallace

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Melissa Wendel

January 20, 2019

What a beautiful service. That it was so well attended made my heart smile. I’d like to take this online opportunity to share a memory with Beth and Dennis’s family, friends and acquaintances.

Pulling in to the same parking spot in the Manatee County parking garage Monday through Friday, Dennis Wallace arrived in his silver VW with the tennis ball license plate. He’d make his way each day into the building saying hello to whomever he was walking in with that day, taking the time and having the heart to be genuinely interested. Dennis would eventually get to the eighth floor, attaché case in hand, greeting Sally with a big smile. He had this habit of gearing up for the day by organizing the piles on his desk and logging on his PC while humming this jazz-like tune. Ba-da-da-dat-da..

After getting situated in his office, he’d go out to the floor. He’d say good morning to Gwennie and proceed to check in with his staff to see how things were going, promoting the team strategy and reminding whoever happened to be holding the hot potato to stay focused. He loved to check in. He loved people. He loved his people. This was the work week morning routine and a work family tradition for almost a decade.

Dennis was all of those things said about him at the service. Intellectual, kind, humorous, integral, stylish and a man of courage, grace and good character.

I am thankful for the gift of this time with Dennis, a season rich in substance. Dennis’s words, his actions, and his spirit have touched my life in so many ways. I will truly miss him.

Bonnie Sietman

January 19, 2019

It is with great sadness that I’m saying a final goodbye today to my mentor and my friend. Dennis shared his knowledge and carried himself with honesty, integrity and the utmost respect for others. I’ll cherish the many stories we shared with each other. Beth, my deepest sympathy to you, the entire family and the boyz. DWW, I miss you.

Deborah Carey-Reed

January 18, 2019

To everything there is a season and I smile when thinking of the season working with Dennis. His knowledge and sincerity gave his stature credence. Beth, your loss is felt by many. My heart goes out to you. Look up to God for comfort and remember your times together for the joy.

Sharon Granberg

December 11, 2018

Dennis, I'm so sad that you are gone. You made the crazy world of procurement so much more fun with your witty banter and your quarter bets. When you retired, and I'm sure feeling poorly, you sent me an article about good ol' Newburgh. I wish you peace and happiness on your next journey; I will miss you my friend.
Beth, when he spoke of you, it was always with the highest regard and respect; he obviously loves you very much. He was the quintessential gentleman. My heartfelt sympathies to you, Beth, and his family.

Robert Eschenfelder

December 7, 2018

As a lawyer for Manatee County, I worked with Dennis for many years. Dennis impressed me in many ways. His physical presence and commanding voice gave him credibility, but he came to earn my respect through many conversations I had with him, and many projects he oversaw. Dennis was clearly smart and experienced, but he showed his true character when someone tried to criticize or pressure him. He was a master of remaining calm and dignified while others barked or panicked. And he always responded to anger with respect, and to criticism with kindness. To me, this was proof of a man who’s life was fuller than just his job, and who knew how to win the long game. Knowing Dennis meant knowing he liked tennis and opera, and loved his wife unfailingly. He was an example to me in many ways, and l am thankful that my getting to know him will always be a part of who I am. To Beth and family, please accept my thanks for sharing Dennis with the world, and accept my must heartfelt condolences on his passing.

Robert Michael Eschenfelder

Jessica Smith

December 3, 2018

I was shocked and deeply saddened to hear about the loss of my friend and former colleague, Dennis. He was extremely witty and a joy to be around. Beth, my heart goes out to you. I pray that your memories will comfort you during this time of sorrow. RIP, my friend.

Melissa Wendel

December 1, 2018

It is indeed painful to hear of the loss of my good friend and colleague, Dennis Wallace. My heartfelt thoughts and prayers go out to Beth and the entire family during this very difficult time and I pray that the many fond memories you hold will bring you comfort and healing. Dennis will forever remain in my heart and memory.

Jane and Brad Hindall

November 30, 2018

We have shared great evenings on the tennis court. Dennis was so easy going and would fill in and play tennis with our evening group when we needed a sub. I also enjoyed working with Dennis when he was at the City and County. Beth I hope that the memories and fun times help sustain you during these tough times. Know that you are loved and have our deepest sympathies.