Client Testimonials

Maximizing Possibilities. Making Great Things Happen.

Event Management Testimonials

“In a word? WOW. Carolyn took an idea for an event and somehow managed to pull together three different host organizations, and over 20 speakers for an event that knocked all our socks off … in just 6 weeks! Despite the size and scope (over 600 attendees), she made me feel like I was the only speaker of the day and I was well-taken care of from beginning to end. Carolyn is an exciting visionary who also knows how to get it done. If you want an event they’ll be talking about for ages, look no further; Carolyn will get it done. And she’s great fun to boot.”

Catherine Byers Breet

Chief Stripe Changer / Career Coach / Strategic Recruiting, ARBEZ

I wanted to take the time to personally thank you for all of your efforts helping us plan and execute our recent Innovation Takes Root Conference in Los Colinas, Texas. Having been involved with large Technical Conferences on many occasions during my career, I have had the opportunity to work with several event planners and production companies. I have come to recognize that these events require absolute commitment to planning, anticipation and finally determined execution. Up until working with you on ITR, I can honestly say that never have I had the good fortune to work with a coordinator that excelled in all of these areas and was able to do so while staying completely calm, focused and in control throughout even the most stressful moments of the conference.
It is a real testament to your strength as a coordinator that any issue that arose during the conference, no matter how small or how large, was handled calmly, professionally and in all cases, so seamlessly, to the outside observer, it was as if nothing ever happened. Of course, your preparations and anticipation of possible problems resulting in very few surprises during the event so perhaps that was why you could stay so clam and in control. I know that our marketing coordinator, Andrea Ziadi, would not have been able to pull this size of a project off without your planning and execution skills and she also is extremely thankful for your assistance.
I am still trying to catch up with my other projects now that ITR is over and don’t want to think too much about 2011 but I hope that we can synchronize calendars and that you will be available once we get a date established. It would be pleasure to once again team up with you to continue the success from last month into the future.

Jim Nangeroni, Ph.D

Lead Applications Development Engineer , NatureWorks, LLC

“It was our pleasure and honor to have been sponsored by Carolyn Vinup for the Soundsations Conference at Normandale College in Minneapolis, MN. Carolyn’s expertise in producing events is truly outstanding.

We have been teaching and traveling throughout the world together for well over a dozen years. Of all the hundreds of workshops and presentations we have given, the event Carolyn Vinup produced is among the very best we’ve ever experienced. Carolyn Vinup’s expertise in creating, marketing, and promoting events such as the Soundsations Conference is extraordinary. Carolyn has the ability to work graciously and efficiently with people at every level…she gets things done timely and with grace and ease!

We not only recommend Carolyn Vinup—we look forward to working with her again in producing another event in the very near future.”

Jonathan & Andi Goldman

Internationally Acclaimed Authors and Teachers

A master organizer and producer, Carolyn makes things happen and brings high value to her clients and the community. She takes concepts and turns them into reality. Carolyn led the successful Change Your Stripes event at Normandale CC in conjunction with DEED and the MN Workforce Center that was attended by more than 600 people. Her relationship building skills, positive attitude and innovation exceed expectations at any project or event that she manages. Carolyn gets the Law of Attraction. It is always a pleasure to work with her. I highly recommend Carolyn. Top qualities: Expert, Good Value, Creative

Anne Pryor, M.A.

LinkedIn Trainer, Thought Leader Coach, Lovitude™ Soul Painter ♦ Look Great, Be Found, Get Known, Make Great Connections

Carolyn, you are a rock star! We are very happy with your leadership and day-to-day management of the first Good Leadership Conference. Thank you so much for your dedication, hard work and your diplomatic way of keeping things moving.

Here are some of the comments from our team: Working with Carolyn is a true treat. Her dedication to the small details and the excellence of presentation guarantees exceptional results. This was our first Good Leadership Conference, we had a lot to learn as we planned and implemented. Carolyn was an exceptional mentor. She managed a wide variety of changes and our planning team with calm, direct leadership. When the day of the conference arrived, we were ready for success and to enjoy our hard work. Carolyn provided a terrific wrap up summary and copy of all marketing materials that will serve as the format for our next conference. The knowledge and skills she shared with us not only assured a successful first conference but continued success as our company grows and produces more events. I highly recommend Carolyn Vinup. Her upbeat personality and detail-oriented leadership style makes her a true asset to any company. In summary, we look forward to working with you again. Thank you.

Paul Batz

President, Good Leadership Enterprises

Events are a TON of work. And to pull off a World Class event expertise is needed to make the day flawless, valuable and productive. Carolyn is a true professional. She works hard to make the best things happen throughout the process and it shows from her binders & post event summary to her presence at the day to keep things flowing. I can’t wait to work with her again. She’s a rock star.

Cathy Paper M.A.

Executive Networking Coach, National Speaker, Book Sales & Marketing Coach, Publicist, Forbes Coaches Council

Carolyn truly understands how to deal and motivate people within her orbit. I found her very easy to work with, timely and innovative in handling business situations.

Steve Beseke

Doctor of Life Resiliency, Author of many books on life and resilience, who is still learning lessons from Cerebral Palsy after nearly six decades.

I wanted to say, thank you so much. I got to see Justine’s memorial event from a far, I watched it live from London, and it looked like it went off without a hitch. I was so excited to see the memorial go off so successfully. I know you were the critical person in pulling it all together. I just wanted to do a post event wrap and I wanted to express my appreciation and gratitude.

Linea Palmisano

City Council, Ward 13

Business Consulting Testimonials

I had the privilege of working with Carolyn Vinup for 2 years. She came to D’Amico Catering with the task of increasing our business in the St Paul market and our corporate business overall.

Carolyn did much more than that.

She was the ambassador for our company at industry events and multiple associations and chambers. She was instrumental in our acquisition of a number of new venues and redirected our efforts in determining which properties were best for our brand. Carolyn led our team in creating proposals that differentiated D’Amico Catering and won us many new venues for our portfolio.

She was responsible for recharging our marketing focus, refreshing our print media, messaging our
social media and creating new marketing materials.

Carolyn is a delight to work with, full of energy and very dedicated to any project she is asked to accomplish.

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Linda Adam

Director of Catering Sales, D'Amico Catering

I am grateful to have worked with Carolyn over the years on a number of special events, classes and unique projects. She is a true living example of someone who understands and applies the Law of Attraction with remarkable results! She is able to attract and assemble elite teams of experts easily for her projects. She can meld seemingly opposite programs and people to work in perfect harmony for the greater good of all. Her events are always first class and participants learn and grow tremendously. She is a consummate marketer, visionary, innovator, highly skilled in customer service principles, especially willing to “go the extra mile” for others! She has a driven, goal achieving mindset and makes great things happen, concept to completion! Carolyn was part of the inspiration for my new book, Superconscious Power, and has provided constant encouragement to me throughout the writing process. She inspires and motivates others to achieve their dreams. Carolyn has earned a 5-star recommendation from me as well as EVERYONE I have spoken to about her work!

"Dr. Mike" Monroe Kiefer

President, Powermind Training

Carolyn Vinup is a true go-getter in every sense of the expression. I have had the pleasure of working with her through D’Amico Catering and I can tell you that if you want results, you want her on your team. Carolyn brings endless energy, passion, excitement and creative thinking to every project. She is always a step ahead of the game and is an excellent visionary thinker. Her work ethic is fabulous, and she has the ability to maximize partnerships with amazing finesse and results. I look forward to many future projects with her!

Bethany (Kovar) Branan

Owner at Sip Savor Social, Business Marketing Consulting

Carolyn has a thirst for continual growth and learning and has a keen ability to create connections and ties between all that she experiences and learns in her life. As a business owner, she has the business and financial acumen to understand successful business and marketing processes and models. As an event planner, she has project management and time management expertise and experience that she utilizes in everything that she does.

As a holistic health practitioner, she understands human development and interpersonal communication/relationships and as someone who has worked in the service industry for many years, she understands the true essence of customer service. Using all these talents, Carolyn has provided Normandale with 110% in every role she has been in.

Sunny Ainley

Director, Normandale Community College

Carolyn is a true professional. I have never met a more energetic and positive thinking person. She has a true passion for making a difference…helping others…and being a true professional in everything she touches.

I also admire Carolyn’s creative leadership. I had the pleasure to work with Carolyn on a few specialized events at Normandale Community College. Each time, I was blown away by her innovative thinking that turned the seeds of an idea into a masterful event. As we’ve both moved forward….I truly look forward to our collaborations in the health and wellness arena!

Lori Gerval

Director of Marketing at Tealwood Senior Living/All Saints

Carolyn is one of the most enthusiastic, energetic and creative business professionals I know. I’ve worked with Carolyn on a number of PR, marketing and training projects at Normandale Community College. She is great to work with and I highly recommend her. She is a real “possibility thinker” who gets results – no matter what the project is. Not only does she “think outside the box”; she encourages others to do the same, which is very motivating and exciting. I love working with her because she is energetic, passionate, positive and committed to excellence. Plus, she is a lot of fun to work with!

Barbara K. Mednick

Strategic Communications Leader, Executive Communications, Media Relations, Digital PR, Marketing Communications

All I can say is that Carolyn is a cloud of energy. When you meet with Carolyn regarding a project, you feel like the project will be successful from day one. We worked on some projects that resulted in helping people find their way and get on track again.

Tom Reese

Workforce Specialist 2 at Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development

Carolyn Vinup is the clearest forward thinker that I have ever met. Every project, program or event that she creates or is part of expands into fruition exponentially and everyone involved gains from her expertise. I hold Carolyn in the highest regard, her people and communication skills are off the charts and ability to allow an event or project to go off flawlessly without a hitch are unmatched. Carolyn has an uncanny ability to create and build community within any framework which results in a smoother running, more effective, seemingly inherent business model. Whether it be, faculty, student, vendor, instructor, etc., you cannot help but be inspired by Carolyn’s clear genius and insight. If Carolyn had a user manual this would be the disclaimer. Let her do what she knows to do, it will benefit you. There are things that you will not see but she does, and those very things will bring you and your company to unforeseen levels of success. Congratulations, you’ve made a wise choice!

Hanakia Zedek

Priest of The Philosophy of Nothing/CEO Hanakia Zedek.Org

Carolyn is simply amazing! She sees the big picture in everything. She is a go-getter with boundless energy. Carolyn makes the work she does fun. She is a positive force. I would love to work with her again!

Rachel Bruzek

Senior Event Planner, Sales. Senior Creative Event and Trend Specialist, D'Amico Catering

Many years ago, when I was first getting to know Carolyn, I told her that I found her “inspirational”. Today I believe that more than ever. Carolyn lives a life filled with big dreams and big accomplishments. She is a master connector, who always focuses on how she can help others – rather than how she might benefit personally. Wherever she is you’ll find people living their passion and having fun doing it. I am proud to call her my friend and colleague.

Rich Muller

Owner, The Business Development Portal

I’ve worked with Carolyn on many projects but most recently we worked together on some integrative health education presentations at Normandale Community College. I really enjoy working with Carolyn because she moves mountains where no one else seems to be able to get traction. The energy she brings to projects ignites business growth and growth of the team members. She pushes the limit to show people that they are capable of getting to the next level. I’ve seen her do it time and time again with great success. Carolyn is my first call when I need to push through to the next level of success and when I need to gain clarity in my market message.

Taiha Wagner

CIC, NBC-HIS, Open House/Operations Manager , Miracle-Ear, Inc.

Carolyn is a big picture, collaborative partner who has more ideas than anyone. Most importantly, Carolyn implements ideas at warp speed! Carolyn has the ability to uncover your biggest business dreams and goals and turn them into results.

Liz Weatherhead

Conduit Connector, What If? Learning and Leadership

Event Management and Business Consulting Testimonials

I am writing this letter in praise and admiration for Carolyn Vinup, event guru extraordinaire. I have hired Carolyn for the past three years as an event consultant on the Star Tribune State Fair project. She brings incredible organization, experience and class to any event she touches.

Over the past three years, Carolyn has single handedly taken a poor working relationship with the Minnesota State Fair and transformed it into one of trust and respect. We have gone from the Fair, not returning our phone calls, to receiving appreciative Christmas Cards from them. Carolyn did this by building an honest and mutually responsive communication line with Fair management. While they still do not grant all our requests, they are willing to listen and are happy to get us what we need to be successful. This was unheard of three years ago.

Carolyn has brought the Star Tribune State Fair booth to a new level. Under her leadership, we increased the customer service caliber at the booth, and steadily increased our level of merchandise and single copy newspaper sales. We have attracted bright, energetic employees who have fun at the booth and support a positive Star Tribune image. Our booth looks as good as it ever has, with Carolyn working continually to maintain, repair and upgrade the features of a very limited physical space. From hanging signs to scheduling staff to managing cash, inventory and closing reports. Carolyn’s incredible attention to every detail has kept us on task and maintained positive vendor relations. Her ability to timeline all aspects of our State Fair project have allowed me to focus on the promotional aspects of the event and have enabled me to do the rest of my job outside the Fair project effectively. She has been a vital support to me and The Star Tribune Company.

As a team player and hired consultant, Carolyn is second to none. She can diplomatically negotiate the best out of anyone, any organization. As a person, she is beyond reproach and of the highest standards. I would highly recommend Carolyn for any event project you are undertaking. She has a true passion for the projects she takes on and it shows in her incredible energy and her complete dedication.

Janet Lindblad

Senior Consumer Account Executive, Star Tribune

Carolyn is one of the most energetic, authentic, creative, organized, and inspiring people I have ever met! She is multi-talented as a business owner, developer, and strategist. I have worked with and known Carolyn in several capacities including an event planner, teacher, Feng Shui expert, negotiator, leader, and motivator to name just a few. She can take a broad idea with tight deadlines and the end result is always above and beyond what was expected! She gets it done and always with a little bit of fun! She has a natural ability to bring clarity and focus to any situation, shows dedication and support of people with all that she does, and anyone who crosses paths with her cannot help but benefit from her wealth of experience and knowledge. Carolyn’s work ethic, enthusiasm, and smile are contagious, and she is an asset to any person, team, or company that gets to know and work with her.

Andrea Mitchell

Marketing Manager and Media Relations , The Emmerich Group

Carolyn Vinup is a champion for those in transition. She is passionate about helping people discover their strengths, true talents and inner gifts. She represents WorkForce Partnership & Development for Normandale Community College Continuing Education where she partners with other liked minded individuals to help people navigate this “New World of Work”. Carolyn hopes to inspire others to maximize possibilities and makes great things happen.


Women's Health Leadership TRUST

It is my pleasure to write a letter of reference for Carolyn Vinup. I worked closely with Carolyn at a client’s offices for over six months in 2009 and we have remained in close contact since.

Our roles at this financial services company included a wide variety of responsibilities; while mine focused in the human resource area and Carolyn’s focused in the events management area, we also actively functioned as part of the leadership team. As leaders, we were responsible for strategizing and implementing organizational change, supervising, mentoring and supporting staff, and developing organizational structure, systems and policies. 

I would relish the opportunity to work with Carolyn again in any capacity. She brings a terrific balance of interpersonal skills, insight, and involvement in her work as well as an incredible set of competencies. As a leader, she brings integrity, honesty and support to the team. As an event planner, she goes above and beyond in ensuring the highest quality of program. She understands the big picture aspects of whatever project she is working on. Additionally, there is no detail that Carolyn misses. Few people can bring that balance breadth and depth. 

For example, she was able to negotiate and work closely with the hotels and other meeting venues and achieved results (both in services and negotiated fees) that none of her predecessors at the client’s company had been able to accomplish. Her preparation for every contingency related to the events was above and beyond anyone’s expectations. She coordinated company staff and assigned behind the scenes and pre-event planning responsibilities thoroughly and completely to ensure that the events occurred seamlessly. She created systems and processes to ensure that meeting attendees received the experience that they were promised. 

Carolyn is one of those individuals where no matter the task. she will find a way to exceed your expectations. She doesn’t settle for mediocrity but strives for excellence in everything she does. And she adds a warmth of personality and sense of humor that makes working with her a pleasure.

Arlene Vernon

PHR President, HRx, Inc.

“I have had the pleasure of knowing and working with Carolyn in 4 capacities. I know Carolyn as:

  1. A Teacher. She has brilliantly facilitated and/or co-facilitated a number of classes that I have attended at Normandale. She is a knowledgeable, fun, engaging and motivating instructor.
  2. An Events Producer. Carolyn organizes, manages, promotes and delivers a seamless production! Her project management and client support / interaction skills are amazing!
  3. The Workforce Partnership and Development Specialist. Carolyn very much impresses me with her sincere need to understand and appropriately meet the needs of dislocated workers. She is changing the meaning of the word ‘partnership” and is putting Normandale on the map for people in career transition!
  4. A Healer. I am honored to have had Carolyn facilitate a healing for me! It was supportive, interactive and transformational. I have no words to describe her sound healing work; it needs to be experienced.

Carolyn has managed to successfully integrate professional and spiritual elements into her own personal brand. She is an inspiration. Kudos to Carolyn!”

Claire K. Nelligan

Employment Conselor, State of Minnesota

Program Development Testimonials

Carolyn is beyond amazing at what she does. She has an uncanny ability to find the best people and programs, and package them so that everyone involved benefits, from the presenting institution or corporation, to the teachers and presenters, and of course, all of those who attend.

Carolyn brings her best, authentic self to everything she does, whether it’s business or personal. She is one of those rare people who stays centered, relaxed and happy, while handling a tremendous amount of organization and detail. I’ve known and worked with her for over 8 years, and every encounter has resulted in something good.

Kay Grace

Owner, Energy Express, Inc.

Carolyn’s skills at creating and implementing new and innovative programs are unsurpassed. She is an excellent listener and skilled at integrating people and their skills with others of the same caliber to produce dynamic results. She is a valuable asset to any company and knows how to get a job done with excellence, enthusiasm and creativity. It has always been and continues to be a pleasure to work with her.

Hinda Abrahamson

President Emerita, Feng Shui Institute of the Midwest

Carolyn Vinup is an absolute dynamo. She is a wonderful collaborator and works toward the good of all. She is passionate about empowering and educating people and helping them to discover themselves. Any program this woman has a part in is absolute gold. I highly recommend Carolyn Vinup for anything and everything she has an interest in pursuing.

Deanna Reiter

Breathing Coach, Author & Speaker

Carolyn is “can do” and “take charge” in all of her endeavors. Her energy, vision and purpose, inspires all, moving the team forward towards more innovation.

Jeanne Larson

Carolyn Vinup is the quintessential radio host; extremely charming, great sense of humor and timing, knowledgeable about topics and able to ask insightful questions. She is the bridge between innate talent and the fruition and application thereof. Carolyn allows those who have skills and abilities to be seen for who they truly are!

Hanakia Zedek

Priest of The Philosophy of Nothing/CEO Hanakia Zedek.Org

Carolyn recruited me to teach classes at Normandale College and is a true visionary. She took the alternative healing coursework at the school to the next level. Carolyn’s vision and attention to detail helped build Normandale’s program and make it one of the best in the state of MN.

Bryan Deane Bertsch

Owner, Brewmaster Deane's Kombucha

Carolyn brings her whole, wonderful self to every interaction she is in. She is responsive, creative, professional and always a force for good. I am confident that if Carolyn says she can deliver, she does…and then some. Her dynamic energy is both inspiring and contagious!

Rhonda Battisto

Master Healer and Owner of Wonder Horse, LLC

Carolyn is a visionary with a “can do” attitude. She sees opportunities for expansion and capitalizes on them. Her ability to graciously welcome many constituents to contribute to a unified goal is remarkable. I highly recommend Carolyn as a leader who can successfully produce and advocate for educational programs, events and initiatives.

Doreen Johnson

Life Changes Coach and Employee Engagement Consultant

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