Where are you from + What is your background?
I grew up in Red Wing, Minnesota, home of Red Wing Shoes! My first job out of college was writing for the local newspaper. I soon realized, however, that my future was in business, not journalism. For the next 18 years I worked as a retail store manager, eventually transferring from Mankato, Minnesota to Ottumwa, Iowa to run the Herberger’s department store. With the births of my children came a desire to be at home in the evenings & weekends, so my career path took a turn - an 8 to 5, Monday to Friday job working as the Vice President of Marketing for a wholesale art and framing business. In early 2001, I left to start my own poster line, ArtAttack! which I continued to publish until 2007. At the same time, in March of 2001, I began a new career in sales with Universal Printing, starting as a sales person and rising to Vice President in 2002. After over 16 years, I still wake up each morning happy to face each new day’s challenges.
Outside of work you will find me….?
Bicycling, cruising in my convertibles, and watching sports. My son and his family have joined me as season ticket holders for the Iowa Wild and we are big fans of their parent club in St. Paul. We also get a bit crazy about the Vikings and, dare I say it, the Minnesota Gophers. We also avidly cheer for the Cyclones AND Hawkeyes AND Panthers. I treasure the time I get to spend with my grown-up “kids” and my grandchildren Olivia & Belle. I enjoy craft beers and checking out the micro-breweries around Des Moines. After building up my airline miles, I am looking forward to traveling again in the near future.
If you had to guess, why do you think people work with you/Universal?
First, I wouldn’t sell much if we weren’t great printers! But nearly as importantly, I genuinely care. I would rather be a hero to my client for helping them to find better ways to be more successful and to maximize their resources than to “score” a big sale. That is what clients need but so seldom can find. That alone puts me far ahead of many competitors. Everything else just takes care of itself.
What is the most unique item you sold at Universal?
“Zero-Gravity” Loveseats & Magic 8 Balls!
After 16 years, I still love working for the Springer family. The respect and freedom I am given allows me to perform my job at the highest level. I work hard to provide my clients the best service and the best advice - at a competitive price - and I am able to do that at Universal.