Born and raised in Wyoming, I'm the daughter of a railroad engineer and saucy, no-holds barred, truth speaker. Lucky enough to spend most of my childhood with an Irish immigrant grandfather and a grandmother who was the heart and soul of our family ranch, I learned the value of a gritty, yet emphatic approach to life.
Fort Collins became my home in the mid-90's when Wyoming and I had enough of each other. Within no time I was enrolled in CSU and found a passion for finance and real estate. Before my undergraduate wrapped up, I had purchased my first investment property. The second came a few years later. We now own several properties throughout Northern Colorado.
Lucky enough to be mentored by a college accounting professor at CSU, I was introduced to "a crazy entrepreneur who needed someone to help him get shit done." And get shit done, is exactly what we did.
Larry Hower, the crazy entrepreneur, owned a software development company, ran the US operations of a European telephone test set manufacturer, designed and produced a handheld keyboard, and was in minimum viable mode with three other start-ups. Managing and operating the businesses, so he could work on the businesses, my "full-stack" leadership career began. Marketing, accounting, finance, business development, human resources, you name it, I accomplished it.
As Larry began to divest his businesses, in walked crazy entrepreneur #2. Scott Franklund was "the" luxury real estate agent in Colorado and he needed someone to run his business. This time the stakes were much larger, and to be honest, a ton more fun; luxury real estate in Boulder County.
It was late 2001 when I accepted the Director of Marketing position. Just months post-9/11. Selling high-end real estate in that economy should have been a nightmare, however we created go to market strategies for each and every property. We cast the nets wide and far, but to very specific individuals.
Our approaches worked perfectly, so much so that sales grew from $16-million in 2002 to $130-million in 2005. Scott has since passed away, but the legacy we created with Legendary Properties was extraordinary.
Then came crazy entrepreneur #3, Carlos Garcia. Founder, Owner, and President of KIRA, one of the nation's largest base operation support contractors, Garcia asked me to take the lead in running the marketing for KIRA, as well growing his venture capital portfolio. Nine years, $500-million in backlog built, $1-billion in contract operations, oversight of every functional area in the organization except for IT, eight VC investments, and an MBA, I began the search for my next challenge.
Crazy entrepreneurs #4, The Richardson Family. Recruited to manage their real estate portfolio throughout Northern Colorado, it quickly became an exercise of restructuring accounting and finance data as well as implementing ways to increase efficiency of operations.
My employment with the Richardson's had barely begun when we lost our home to a fire. Blah. 70 hours a week isn't ideal when you are piecing your life back together.
Enter crazy entrepreneur #5, me. When offered to consult with Carlos as he sold several of his businesses, I gladly accepted the challenge and led three entities to successful acquisition. Not only was it a fabulous experience, I was able to rebuild our home.
Now I've landed at IDS International, a fast-paced, high cadence government services contractor. It's taken a move across country to Northern Virginia, but my new digs and gigs are pretty darned cool.
And rescue pups. Rescue pups will always be involved.