Even after 30 years working in meetings and events, Bruce and Donna Horii find plenty of motivation in what they do.
“We both have a passion for the mountain lifestyle, Colorado as a state and Breckenridge as a home base; I think that kind of shows through to our guests and clients,” says Bruce, director of sales and marketing at Beaver Run Resort and Conference Center in Breckenridge for the past 15 years.
You could say it was a string of happy accidents that brought the two together. Halfway through college, Donna, then still a New Englander, was on a tour across country when she drove through Colorado. She stuck around as a ski bum long enough to get state residency and graduated from University of Colorado in Boulder. Since then, she’s worked for various convention and visitor bureaus including Denver and Grand Junction, before becoming the director of sales at Breckenridge Tourism Office six years ago.
She got to know Bruce—a native Coloradoan— through various networking events held by local industry associations. At one of these events, while taking a bus tour of the newly built Denver International Airport, she ended up literally landing in Bruce’s arms when the bus slid off the edge of the road.
The couple celebrated their 19th anniversary in August. With two kids in high school and a vibrant tourism scene keeping things busy at work, they are as passionate about Breckenridge as they were when they first moved there in 2000.
COM+E: How do you balance your professional and personal relationship?
DH: I will admit, there are times when we’re home business will come up. We try to keep that to a minimum and say, “Let’s not talk about this tonight; give me a call tomorrow and we’ll talk tomorrow.”
BH: There is definitely some overlap and a challenge in keeping the business side away from home. But I think we do it pretty well.
COM+E: How have you maintained enthusiasm for your work throughout the years?
BH: There are always opportunities for improvement and even though we both have done this a long time, it’s still not perfect. And there are plenty of challenges between the economy and the competitive nature of our business.
DH: I think the people we’ve been able to work with and the product we’ve worked with has made it enjoyable as well as keeping it challenging while we try to raise the bar.