Mark C. Perna is the founder and CEO of TFS in Cleveland, Ohio, a full-service strategic consulting firm whose mission is to share and support every client’s desire to make a difference. Mark, a graduate of John Carroll University, has many years of experience addressing industry leaders on the topic of expanding their reach in an increasingly global marketplace. As a noted expert on Generations Y and Z, Mark has devoted his career to empowering educators and employers to unleash the tremendous potential of today’s young people, both in the classroom and on the job.
After successfully parenting two Millennials as a full-time single father, Mark has become a passionate advocate for bridging the generational divides that are contributing to America’s profound skills gap. Parents, schools, districts, businesses, and state organizations of all sizes nationwide have successfully used Mark’s insights and strategies to connect more effectively with the younger generations. In his work with educational and business organizations, Mark has pioneered many best practices for achieving more with today’s young people, including the TFS Education with Purpose® philosophy and highly popular Career Tree® strategy, among others. Mark is frequently cited as the national expert in education enrollment, retention, and performance.
A dynamic and motivational public speaker, Mark frequently delivers keynote speeches at national and statewide events and recently spoke at Harvard University by special invitation. His genuine personality and warm sense of humor make him a fun and memorable communicator that people connect with immediately. He regularly addresses both small groups and massive crowds in his capacity as a generational and performance expert, reaching thousands of educators, parents, employers, and young people each year with his powerful message of change and empowerment.
At TFS, Mark heads an energetic team of talented professionals who share his vision of making a bigger difference in education and workforce development. TFS partners with schools, districts, businesses, and state organizations of all sizes nationwide to help them experience significant gains in enrollment, engagement, retention, and performance rates.
As a nationally recognized voice in student engagement and success, Mark has published numerous articles in national trade publications, including Construction Executive and Techniques, among many others. His first book, Generation Why: Unleashing the Passion, Purpose, and Performance of Younger Generations, was written to help parents, employers, and educators understand Generations Y and Z and inspire them to greater performance in all areas of life. He blogs regularly at BeaWade.com.
Mark enjoys inspirational movies, theater, cooking, golf, wine, and time with his family—especially the latest Pernas, granddaughters Ellie and Lou Lou. He resides in Cleveland, Ohio.