We had the good fortune of connecting with Loni Peterson, MLS and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Loni, how do you think about risk?
As a professor at CU and DU teaching event planning. Risk management is a topic we cover every semester. It is important to understand all the potential risks when it comes to an event, and running your business. If you are able to have a list of potential things that could go wrong, it is easier to plan in contingencies to mitigate low-level risks before they even happen. On the other hand, you can’t grow without taking risks! I think leaving a corporate job and starting a business is a huge risk, but when there is passion and dedication behind the steps being taken, you naturally have a higher probability of success. When starting a new advenure, or applying for a job, I have always had the mentality of, “what’s the worst that could happen – they tell me ‘no’?” Going into situations with appropriate expectations also helps the risk to be more managable. The last element of risk management I teach is about the accpeted risks. You acknowledge that this is a risk that might happen and there isn’t anything that can be done to mitigate it. The accepted risk takes guts and bravery – but sometimes there is something even better on the other side after living through that risk!
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I firmly believe that all the jobs, experiences, and education I have are all working in perfect harmony now as a small business owner and Professor. I grew up as a dedicated ballet dancer who performed with a youth company. Dance taught me to never give up, do your best, and the feeling of joy when I was creating art through movement. I attended undergrad in Texas and studied Art History and Painting. This creative time made me excited about art and making beautiful things with my hands. I also knew being an educator was important to me at an early age and I began teaching after school art classes in high school, then dance classes and ran a competition dance comapany of 60 dancers through college, and earned a masters degree while writing curriculum for the Denver Botanic Gardens’ summer art installations for three years. Now I am a Professor at the University of Denver (graduate program) and the University of Colorado Boulder and teach Event Planning and Art History courses. Running my company, being surrounded by likeminded individuals, and teaching is the perfect career match for me and I am so happy my path has taken me here – can’t wait to see what is around the next bend.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
For the purpose of this question, let’s say the person visiting is from Texas – an not accustomed to the altitude! I would recommend they stay at a fun boutique hotel in Downtown Denver, check out Union Station, eat at any of Troy Guard’s restaurants, go on an easy/short hike, show them St. Mary’s Glacier, and eat pizza at Beau Jo’s in Idaho Springs.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
As an event planner you are often times managing a team of staff and vendors; and to me, it is so important to give credit where credit is due. No wedding or event is made possible by just one person and neither is building a business. The wedding industry in Denver has been very welcoming and supportive, and I am grateful to be in this indusrty in Colorado. First, I would not be where I am today without the love and support of my husband, Daniel, and the amazing vendors I have had the privlidge of surrounding myself during my first year in business. Since then, I have enjoyed getting to know, brainstorm with, laugh with, and create with some amazing businesswomen who have made this jounrey just so much fun! Here goes the name drops, if you don’t know who these peopl are, do yourself a favor and get to know them! Cara Jo Knapp (Knapp Design Co.), Cassie Lopez (Wandering Wagon Bars), Aubrey Henderson (one half of The Get Down DJs), Zimmie Joeh (Reverie Floral Co.), Michele Karas (Hazel Grove Rentals and Design), and Ashley Sassoon (Wildwood Floral Co.) — and endless more! Prior to starting my wedding planning company, I worked in the nonprofit sector and planned fundraising events that aimed to raise $3million each year. The woman who I was fortunate enough to work with during this time, Elisa Berzins, has become someone I can depend on not only when it comes to events related advice, but as a friend. There has never been a working parternship that was more seemless, collaborative, or fun – and I am grateful for everything I was able to experience and learned in a short two and a half years working with her. She is an event beast! I am a firm believer that the universe has brought all these amazing people into my life for a reason, so I am listening and doing everything I can to take advantage of being around them.
Other: Google: LP Creative Events Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/lpcreativeevents
Photo of myself: Kari Joy Kuschel Gold Dress: Breelle Hilsenrath