It is Monday and we are pleased to present our Meet a Mom this week, Ashlee Willis from Michigan Premier Events. Ashlee is a mom of 3 boys, an influential downtown Lansing business owner and a lifelong resident of the Greater Lansing area.
Ashlee not only promotes but advocates for area businesses and cultivates relationships within the local business community. The past 2 summers, Michigan Premier Events and Downtown Lansing Inc worked together to Lift Up Local businesses – a 3 month ambassador program with its sole focus on lifting up Lansing small businesses.
Ashlee is an innovative, hard working mom who is community focused and it all begins each morning with first her family – always – and then a cup of black coffee.
Welcome to GLAMoms, Ashlee! 🙂
Please introduce yourself, where are you from, where do you reside now?
My name is Ashlee Willis, founder and CEO of Michigan Premier Events. I am a wife, mom of 3 boys and business owner. My hometown is Grand Ledge, Michigan and I reside in Delta Township.
What do you think is one of the best parts about being a mom?
The best part about being a mom is being with 3 amazing boys who I love sooo entirely much. The best feeling is being there for them and giving them the best life.
Tell us about Michigan Premier Events, also what got you started in event planning?
Michigan Premier Events is a full-service award-winning association, corporate and government event management company, delivering superior results for corporations and associations across the state of Michigan, statewide and nationally for years.
Whether your organization needs assistance managing board meetings and events or strategizing and hosting excellent programs, seminars, conferences, and special events, Michigan Premier Events alleviates the guesswork, time, and effort so you can focus on serving your stakeholders.
What got me started in event management was my side hustle back in college. While taking courses in college, I had a business in photography, painting and creating artificial floral arrangements for restaurants and the hospitality industry. I also did wedding photography and created wedding decor.
Business was great. I then started to get corporate businesses wanting me to create floral arrangements for events and businesses were buying them at wholesale. I started to get asked if I could manage services for business events and really like to assist putting together events for businesses. From there business really picked up and my floral business became a corporate event management company named Michigan Premier Events.
Did you work during COVID? How was your business affected?
Yes. Our business was a leading force. We assisted a lot of organizations helping them pivot their events from in-person to virtual. We also assisted programs to be on broadcast television.
Our management services allowed us to assist over 100 programs in 2020. We also helped organizations and associations redevelop their program so funders, sponsors and donors would continue to support despite the challenges of COVID. We also assisted in outdoor events for the community and are the founders of Lift Up Local ambassadors program to help support local businesses.
We created a strong partnership with Downtown Lansing Inc. to continue this program and other events.
And what did school look like last year for your children?
Our children went virtual for the past year and a half. Our household was very active but we managed to find a rhythm in our schedule.
What do you most look forward to this school year?
Look forward to children reconnecting with their friends and becoming more active. They are beyond excited to be back in school.
What gets you up in the morning? And how do you take your coffee?
What gets me up in the morning is my family and business. I love my family and spending each day with them. My company is growing and each day it is exciting to help my clients.
I love my coffee straight black. I really enjoy the smell of coffee in the morning.
How do you balance being both an area business owner and being a mom?
I balance by being both a business owner and by being a mom by making my family a priority first. My husband and I also work strongly together supporting one another balancing all of our work, school, sports and lots of family time.
Here are a couple questions to get to know you better 🙂
Do you have a – cannot live – without skincare or makeup product(s)? I can not live without eyeliner!!
Last book you read – Walkable City by Jeff Speck
If you watch television, what is your favorite show? My favorite show is on Netflix that I am currently watching called All American.
Strangest thing in your desk drawer right now? Miniature Robot.
Your favorite snack? Reese cups
What does family down-time look like at your house? Sleep. With three amazing boys our house is very active. The only down-time is when they are all asleep.
Mind sharing a mom trick another mom will be happy to learn? Advice: Always have kid snacks in your car.
The children’s book you most enjoy reading – Dinosaurs Love Tacos……My favorite book!
Favorite Michigan road trip – Grand Haven; Going to Grand Haven, Michigan every year for my birthday week in July. My family and inlaws all get together and up there for a week. This has been a tradition for years.
Are there any upcoming events in the Greater Lansing area we can share with GLAMoms and area businesses?
Collaborate Lansing Lunch Hour – September 15 from 11:30-1:00 p.m. Downtown Lansing
Festival in a box to feature our Forks and Corks Event with Downtown Lansing, October 1
Grub Crawl October 7th 5-8 p.m. Downtown Lansing
Lift Up Local Week – running from October 12-18
Thank you Ashee for being featured as a Greater Lansing Area Moms, Meet a Mom! It was a pleasure to get to know you better and looking forward to attending your future events!
How do you prefer readers to connect with you if they would like more information?
Email [email protected]
Facebook Michigan Premier Events
Instagram Michigan Premier Events
LinkedIn Michigan Premier Events
Photographs provided by Ashlee Willis
Do you know of an area mom Greater Lansing Area Moms should feature as a Meet a Mom? Please email [email protected] and we will take it from there. 😉 Thank you!