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Through real-life experience, Denny developed an understanding of the opportunities and challenges of running a business and raising a family in rural Pennsylvania. He worked seven days a week to ensure his five children had what every parent wants to provide for their children: the opportunity to attend college and quality healthcare. In Congress, he’ll put the work ethic he learned on the farm to work for our area.
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Denny’s family farm, Pen-Col Farms, was named for Columbia County, Pennsylvania. For several decades, the farm operated a small processing facility that sold fresh milk in returnable glass bottles. Later, a significant turning point for the farm occurred when Denny recognized the domestic and global demand for Holstein genetics in the 1980s. In the years that followed, he developed a herd of Holsteins that became globally renowned for their elite genetics, in both the domestic and international markets. The farm’s success in international trade prompted Denny’s appointment to the World Trade Organization’s Agriculture Technical Committee during the Clinton Administration. He would later be reappointed under the Bush Administration.
In early 2003, incoming Governor Ed Rendell appointed Denny to serve as Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Agriculture. Accepting this new role, he parked his pickup truck and headed to Harrisburg to serve in the Governor’s cabinet for six years. As Secretary, Denny oversaw a $200 million budget and 600 employees. He focused on educating Pennsylvanians about where their food came from and advancing agriculture’s role as an economic staple in the Commonwealth. One of the many ways Denny advanced our agriculture industry was by launching the “PA Preferred” program, which identifies and promotes agricultural products produced in Pennsylvania. You will find the PA Preferred logo on numerous products at your local grocery store or farmers’ market. Also during this time, Denny served on several cabinet and standing committees, such as the Economic Development and Homeland Security committee, the Conservation Commission, and the Farmland Preservation Board. He was also a member of the Board of Trustees at Penn State University.
In addition to his farm work and public service, Denny is the proud founder of Camp Victory, a camp for children with special needs that’s adjacent to his farm. The camp today hosts over 1,500 children and their families from across the country each summer. Denny was inspired to start Camp Victory after his youngest son, Nicholas, was born with a life-threatening liver disease and spent most of the first two years of his life in hospitals until he received a lifesaving liver transplant when he was eighteen months old. Due to the phenomenal outpouring of support the Wolff family received during this time, they felt the need to give something back, and the idea that would become Camp Victory was born. Denny continues to be President and Chairman of Camp Victory, a non-profit formally recognized as The Nicholas Wolff Foundation.
Denny, a Democrat and avid white-tailed deer hunter, lives in Millville with his wife, Josey.