River City 6: Jonathan Larsen
Larsen & Larsen Auction Co. (www.larsenauctioneering.com) specializes in fundraising auctions as well as offering premier consulting services to non-profit clients. Jonathan Larsen is the President & CEO of Larsen & Larsen Auction Co.
Tell us a little about your business. – We work with groups to take their fundraisers to the next level by increasing their revenue so they can maximize their mission of saving and impacting lives.
How did you get started in the business? – I was selling insurance when a friend asked me to be the auctioneer for his fundraising gala. After that experience, I knew how I was going to use the gifts God gave me.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced professionally? – Helping executive directors of non-profit organizations realize how much more money they can raise with less effort when working with a professional benefit auctioneer like myself. Any fee is an investment they will get back ten-fold. This is proven by the fact that nearly all my business is repeat clients.
What has been your most important achievement professionally? – Completing my 2nd year of the Certified Auctioneers Institute. It is a 3-year commitment and comparable to a Masters Degree in auctioneering. Fewer than 3% of auctioneers worldwide have this designation. It has opened doors to a larger network of professional fundraisers I can turn to all across the country.
Tell us a little about your family. – I have been married to my wife, Rachel, for 9 years. We have 3 children–Phoebe (5), Elliott (3), Amelia Grace, who’s just a little over a month old–plus Arizona and Hank our beloved Australian shepherds. Along with being a business owner I’m also a stay-at-home dad.
What is the most unique or interesting thing about you that most people probably don’t know? – I worked on a dude ranch in Colorado and Arizona as well as taught line dancing.
What are you the most proud of? – I’m really proud of my children. I now understand the parents who get all crazy at sporting events. I am their biggest fan. They inspire me to be the person they think I am.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? – “You’d better marry Rachel before someone else does.”
If you could have a super power, what would it be? – Time management or maybe flying. Though I do feel like a superhero when I put on my tuxedo and help raise thousands of dollars. But if I could fly while I do that…
What is your greatest talent that you don’t utilize in your daily work life? – I’ve been making some fun videos on YouTube lately, some of which can be viewed on my website, and I plan on expanding on that newfound talent by incorporating it into my business.
Which talent would you most like to have? – I am the only one in my family that can’t roll my tongue.
What local non-profit organization(s) are you passionate about or involved with, and are there any special reasons why? – As a benefit auctioneer, I get to be a philanthropic partner to my partner organizations. I strive to get to know each organization so I can be their personal ambassador while on stage raising money. One is The Open Door Mission in Omaha. I’m amazed how they treat children and their families like their very own. They throw a monthly birthday party for needy children with presents and the works. They are doing amazing things there.
If our readers would like to contact you, how should they do so? – I think a singing telegram would be a fun way to be contacted. You could also contact me at (605) 376-7102, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.larsenauctioneering.com.
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