At Suncadia, you step out of urban life and into something that’s all too rare: a place where you know your neighbors instead of just passing them on the way to work. And as visits become longer and more frequent, you get to know the people who help shape Suncadia into a community you hold close to your heart. This column celebrates the Suncadia staff who play a role in the way residents and guests enjoy their time here. Some might be familiar faces or names, and others will be new to you. This week, we chat with Debbie Losse, Director of Catering & Conference Services.
Where are you from originally and how did you end up at Suncadia?
I originally grew up in Eastern Washington. My family had a cabin on Lake Cle Elum so we were up here every weekend. I moved here full time in 1992. Back then, my husband and I were small business owners, with a catering company.
When people ask me how long I’ve worked at Suncadia, I always like to say “since dirt,” which was before we had any infrastructure, just the Prospector Golf Course and a mobile pro shop. In fact, it will be 14 years on October 11, 2018!
What did you want to be when you were a kid?
There was three things: Flight Attendant, Firefighter, Teacher. I did not get to do the flight attendant thing but was able to become a volunteer firefighter and EMT. As far as teaching, I may get to do that when I retire.
What is your role at Suncadia and what’s a typical day like in your job?
I am Director of Catering & Conference Services. There is never a “typical” day in our industry, although there are some typical things you do, like answer calls, emails and plan events. My on-site clients keep me hopping with all sorts of fun and interesting tasks. So it is never typical. You also need to think outside the box so that your clients’ needs are taken care of and you make your planner “look good” to their boss.
Tell me about the type of conferences Suncadia typically hosts?
We handle anything from day only meetings, corporation meetings, reunions, wedding, birthday parties and charity events.
There is one challenging conference I worked that stands. Actually it was two events where there was a golf tournament on one course on Monday for about 160, with vendors on most of the holes. Then moving into a reception/charity auction for 600 guests an hour after the tournament that evening. And the next day there was another golf tournament with 160 guests on a different course with vendors on about half the holes. The guests were fabulous and helpful with knowing where they needed to be but logistically the behind-the-scene was challenging. We are very proud that the charity raised a great amount of money for their cause.
What are some aspects of your job that you love?
I love trying to keep one step ahead of my clients! Love thinking outside the box and pitching ideas that wow our clients. I thoroughly enjoy the relationships I have gained from my work with my clients.
What is your favorite summertime activity and a spot for lunch on property?
Walking or hiking on the property, while looking for wildlife is an escape. For lunch, I like Peoh Point Terrace overlooking the 9th & 18th greens, especially after the grass has been freshly cut. It’s heaven!