All Columns in Alphabetical Order

Monday, July 30, 2012

MOVERS and SHAKERS: Lisa Damron, Co-founder of Satin Serenity Our Coverage Sponsored By The Tennessee Spirits Company

Lisa Damron

The Tennessee Spirits Company produces a family of three premium whiskeys that celebrate the time-honored tradition of Tennessee distilling. The first, Jailers™ Premium Tennessee Whiskey, pays homage to the forefathers of Tennessee whiskey and is a premium, aged whiskey with a smooth, balanced flavor and global appeal. Jailers’ moderate spicy sweetness and big mouth feel give a long, pleasant and warm finish. The rebellious flavor of Breakout™ Premium 8-Year-Old American Rye Whiskey gives rye drinkers a bold way to shake up their normal routine. Breakout provides a smooth introduction to those new to the world of rye whiskey with its rich caramel, vanilla aroma and full-bodied toffee overtone. Forbidden Secret™ American Cream has a velvety decadence and is the guilty pleasure the Irish don’t want you to know about. The blend of pure American dairy cream, dark chocolate, robust espresso and Jailers™ Premium Tennessee Whiskey come together to create its distinctively tantalizing flavor. Visit our website for more information about the Tennessee Spirits Company,

Lisa Damron, co-founder of Satin Serenity, began her journey as an entrepreneur at a very young age. Her father was an entrepreneur of sorts; farming, construction, and odd jobs to care for his family of 7 which included his wife and 6 children. He was also somewhat of an inventor and could build and create any idea that his mind imagined. Lisa developed the same desire to build and create and subsequently obtained the nickname from her family as “Martha” after Martha Stewart. Lisa often worked long hours alongside her father, and enjoyed the satisfaction and feeling of accomplishment after a hard day’s work. She learned many things from him, including being sure to do a good and thorough job, which she has since carried on in her own business practice. 

Lisa attended a small school in her sparsely populated town of 300, Grand View Idaho, where she graduated with a class of 28 students. Following the divorce of her parents, she was somewhat on her own during the last 2 years of High School, living with friends and relatives - determined to finish her schooling in the town that she loved. She was able to excel at her grades and was subsequently chosen as a Senate Page for the State of Idaho. One of her favorite teachers once said to her, “It’s amazing how you keep going and excelling under your circumstances.” These kind words carried Lisa through many difficult times in her future. 

When Lisa was 16 she was involved in a serious auto accident and her friend was critically injured. Lisa did her best to help her friend with the little first aid training that she received in her school health class. After the accident, Lisa was determined to know all that she could about Field Emergency Medicine in the event that she would need the skills again, and took an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Class, becoming certified at age 18.

The EMT class led her towards desiring a career in the medical field. She attended 3 years at Boise State University pursing a Health Science degree where she maintained Dean’s List status. During that time she volunteered as an EMT and was eventually hired by Ada County Paramedics in Boise Idaho. A few years later, she attended a Paramedic course which consisted of 2 years of intense clinical, classroom, and on the job training. Lisa continued her career as a Paramedic for 14 years and often worked with her best friend, favorite paramedic partner, and now co-business owner Crista Sellman-Jones. 

Although Lisa enjoyed the challenging and “think on your feet” attributes of a paramedic, the stress of the job had her thinking about her long term career goals, and she began to desire to create something of her own. She and Crista began to play with the idea of starting their own business. After many conversations, Crista kept re-visiting the idea of starting a business in line with something that you loved. They eventually came up with creating (Lisa’s love) high quality satin pillowcases (Crista’s love) and marketing them as a beauty product. Lisa remembers the moment of looking at Crista and stating, “let’s do it.” 

Lisa and Crista began taking classes to learn all that they could about running a business, including sewing, marketing, finance, and seeking the advice of other business professionals. Although the work is often demanding with long hours, Lisa enjoys the challenge of owning a business and being able to use her creativity. She enjoys learning new things and is especially interested in the back end operations where she runs the finance, fulfillment, and production of the business. She enjoys working from her home office where she is able to be there when her children return from school and having the flexibility to attend their school events. Lisa’s husband of 19 years is a Fire Fighter and his schedule has allowed her to devote long hours to the business. He has been very patient and supportive during the development and growth of Satin Serenity. Lisa balances her life with playing the piano, hiking, camping, gardening, and spending time with her friends and family. She volunteers at the local music community theatre where she is able to sing, dance, and take her mind off of her “to do” list. We are so pleased to present Lisa Damron as our latest Mover and Shaker! Peachy Deegan interviewed Lisa for Whom You Know.

Peachy Deegan: What is your first entrepreneurial memory and how did it impact you? 
Lisa Damron: In grade school, I sold newspapers for a nearby city. The grand prize was a trip to Disney Land which I wanted more than anything; however I did not receive that prize. I was, however one of the top sellers and won a brand new 10 speed bike. This was one of my first lessons that if you really want something and are willing to do the work, then you will be rewarded. 

What should people in Manhattan know about small town life?
That big cities may seem to have everything, but in a small town you really have a sense of belonging and connectedness to people. I loved growing up in a community where you were greeted by the store clerk with a “Hi Lisa, how are you today?” 

What are the keys to overcoming adversity in life and what can our readers learn from you?
As a paramedic, I cared for many people that were less fortunate than me. I would think of them when I was feeling overwhelmed or sorry for myself. I also grew up fairly poor, however looking back I realize that I learned a lot from those experiences and as a result have become stronger and wiser. I know that the only thing that will stop me from accomplishing what I want, is myself.

What does luxury mean to you?
To me, luxury means taking a moment for yourself and saying, “it’s alright – you are allowed to do something nice for yourself.” 

We love Satin Serenity pillowcases; what should everyone know about your brand?
People should know that Satin Serenity is proud to provide beautiful, high-quality, USA-manufactured products and that if our customers are happy, then we are happy. 

What are your future goals for Satin Serenity?
We would like to start a children’s line. They love the feel of the smooth satin and soft cuddle fabric that we use. 

What or who has had the most influence on your pursuit of excellence?
Martha Stewart. I have watched her shows and read her magazines for years. I have always loved how she takes the time to make things special for others. I try to do the same. 

What are you proudest of and why?
I am proud that I started a business. It took a lot of courage to step out of my secure and steady job and start an entirely new profession. 

What would you like to do professionally that you have not yet had the opportunity to do?
I would love to attend a Dave Ramsey EntreLeadership conference.

What honors and awards have you received in your profession?
We have been featured in spa trade magazines, a few local papers and radio show. 

What is your favorite place to be in Manhattan?
Central Park

What is your favorite shop in Manhattan?
The gift shop in our hotel - I didn’t have time to visit other shops.

What is your favorite drink?
I love wine. Right now, it’s Cabernet. 

What is the funniest thing that has ever happened to you at a cocktail party?
My business partner Crista and I were, by chance only, sitting near a group of the Arizona Diamondbacks during their spring training in Arizona. We eventually joined them for cocktails and they invited us to an event the next evening where they would be shooting a commercial. We declined the invitation because we had dinner plans with a group of co-workers (whom we see every day). 

What is your favorite restaurant in Manhattan?

What is your favorite Manhattan book?
Does the subway map count? I would have been lost without it.

Who would you like to be for a day and why?
My daughter, Shelby. She is 12 and I would love to have a day again where I twirl in the sun, sit under the willow tree and read my favorite book, and wonder what I was going to do during summer break.

If you could have anything in Manhattan named after you what would it be and why?
A Broadway theatre. I love entertaining on stage and watching people smile and enjoy themselves. Theatre shows share happiness with others.

What has been your best Manhattan athletic experience?
My first pro baseball game at the New York Yankees Stadium
[Note from Peachy: That is the Bronx...very different from Manhattan]

What is your favorite thing to do in Manhattan that you can do nowhere else?
Experience a Broadway show. 

If you could have dinner with any person living or passed, who would it be and why?
I would have dinner with my late Aunt Betty. She was a great joy and love in my life and I would do anything to spend another moment with her and hear her sing.

What has been your best Manhattan art or music experience?
Seeing Wicked on Broadway

What do you personally do or what have you done to give back to the world?
I am a volunteer member of Music Theatre of Idaho and perform in 2 to 3 shows every year. 

What do you think is most underrated and overrated here?
Underrated: There is a misconception that people are rude and unfriendly. I found that although most people do not acknowledge others around them, when I did need to talk to someone, they were friendly and helpful.
Overrated: “spacious” hotel rooms

Other than Movers and Shakers of course, what is your favorite Whom You Know column and what do you like about it?
I enjoy Laugh with Peachy. After spending all day at my computer in “serious mode,” it is nice to read something that is lighthearted.

Have you drank The Peachy Deegan yet and if not, why not? 
I have not, but I will definitely try it if I can find it in Idaho.
[Note from Peachy: It is not there yet but Star Vodka is in Jackson Hole, Wyoming]

What else should Whom You Know readers know about you?
I feel great knowing that I am helping Idaho become known for things other than potatoes! 

How would you like to be contacted by Whom You Know readers?

Back to TOP