Another year ends and a new one begins. 2018 has been a year of great development for me professionally. I launched my first ever national product line with major retailers. My company managed over 1000 events in 365 days!?! Yes.. one thousand! I sang the national anthem on live television and had many other exciting things take place.
One of my greatest professional achievements to date happened this year, and that is when I met the Vice President of the United States, Mike Pence. In business, I have a motto that I will pitch anyone, anything, at any time. The worst that can happen is they say no, right? To have that mindset, you have to have confidence in yourself. I think a lot of that goes back to my parents. They always encouraged me and told me I could do anything. Well, anything aside from sports! I was certainly not gifted in that area…
Similar to how people create bucket lists of things they want to do within their lifetime, I created a bucket list of events that I want my company to run or be a part of one day. Many are major events, such as the Oscars, the ACM awards, NY Fashion Week, etc. Others center around specific event categories: MLB Baseball games, parades, or world record attempts. Lastly, I strive for specific event clients: major non-profits I believe in, favorite celebrities, political figures.
I have a list of these dream prospects and I repeatedly pitch them. Most of the time I’m completely ignored, but I always say… it only takes one person to open the door. For about two years, I have repeatedly pitched President Trump to allow me to help run an event that he is at. Zero response. Fast forward to this year, I saw Vice President Pence was scheduled to visit Arizona. I immediately wrote a letter and offered my event production services. No response…I received a call from a phone number in Washington D.C.!
The person on the line asked me a couple of questions, and then explained they were having issues with their originally scheduled venue, and they could use my help. I was given direction on secret service requirements, capacity needs, and then sent to work. Now I have never done drugs in my entire life. I’m a good girl. Nyquil is about as risqué as I get with alcohol. But at this moment, I was high with excitement! I found a location that met the specifications and called my new best friend back (aka my contact at the Vice President’s office) to solidify everything. Ultimately, the VP’s office decided on a different location than the one I had presented, due to it being a more familiar location for secret service.
I again pitched that I be able to work the event and was told they’d make it happen. A couple days later, they called to break the bad news. I couldn’t officially be on staff due to a needed lead time for a full background investigation. However, to make it up to me, they invited me to attend the event as a VIP. I was given a front row seat (in front of major political figures). I was able to meet Vice President Pence. He graciously signed my notebook that I take to all event meetings. I almost broke down in tears when that happened. While it may seem insignificant, to a small business owner who poured her heart and soul into her business – that notebook represented thousands of hours of blood, sweat, and tears. With the culmination of everything leading up to being at that event, it felt like the ultimate validation. The hard work was worth it!
I’ll forever be grateful to the Vice President and his staff for allowing me that opportunity. I will never forget it. And to those of you setting goals for the New Year – dream BIG! Work hard. See what God can do!
Desiree' is the executive event producer for Street Market. Her writing is dedicated to all things related to country living, home décor, travel and events, family, faith, and more. Check out her column in Arizona Real Country Magazine.