fashionweektampabay

An Interview With Claire Lessinger ~ #FashionIsAStory

In Events, Fashion, Trends, Updates on September 15, 2017 at 4:19 am

Claire Lessinger is the Director of Special Events at the Tampa Bay Sports Commission. The Tampa Bay Sports Commission is a non-profit, 501c3 organization that serves the Tampa Bay area by bidding on and hosting premiere sports and entertainment events. Thanks to the Tampa Bay Sports Commission, Tampa has had the pleasure of hosting major sporting events that range from the college volleyball championship to the Superbowl!

As the Director of Special Events, Claire serves as the lead liaison not only to the teams and staff she works to bring to the Bay area, but also to the Tampa Bay community. Everyday, Claire is dreaming up ways to positively impact our community and put our beloved city on the map. Read on to find out what inspires Claire, how she got started at the Tampa Bay Sports Commission and what her favorite fashion trend is!

What inspires you daily?
Passion. I’ve never had a job I wasn’t passionate about. I follow my heart, I’ve made a lot of instinctual decisions and I’m so fortunate to be doing something with so many rewards. I get up every day and serve not only the community, but the people who attend our events, the fans and the Tampa Bay Visitors. I firmly believe we live in the best city and love bragging about our growing area.

How did you pursue your career field?
I spent the majority of my career coaching college Volleyball. I played volleyball at the University of Florida and the day I graduated I got into coaching at the college level. I spent 13 of those years at the University of South Florida and served as head coach for 8 years. Even though most of my career was spent coaching, I worked very closely with Rob Higgins, the current Executive Director at The Tampa Bay Sports Commission Head Director. At the time, he was on staff in the marketing and event space and we worked closely together. When Tampa won the bid to host the college volleyball championship, I was able to serve on the host committee. That position opened my eyes not only to what the Sports Commission does but what our city does and what we’re capable of doing at a really high level for these major event. I just thought it was spectacular. That opened up many relationships and thanks to being at the right place of the right time, I was able to use some of the things I learned as a coach and translate those skills to my current position. The learning curve was steep, but it’s been a really fun transition.

How do you or Tampa Bay Sports Commission help the Tampa Bay Community?
We have a great community and it’s not hard to brag and help out the community. Everyone is all in to help Tampa Bay shine. It’s been so remarkable to see the sense of community in the area. The Tampa Bay Sports Commission’s mission is to bring sports and entertainment events to the town with the intent to drive positive economic impact. We’re driving visitors to our community, we’re marketing this destination, we’re helping put it on the map, we’re helping it gain national exposure and by doing that it gives our local community the opportunity to touch, feel and be a part of these amazing events.

How do you encourage creative thinking at Tampa Bay Sports Commission?
This may sound a little cliche but it starts with leadership. We have an incredible leader in our Executive Director Rob Higgins. He is one the most forward thinking, trailblazing figure heads in our community. He’s been very strategic in how he hires and creates a small staff that carries a powerful punch. We each bring our own unique, creative idea to the table. When we’re working with community bids, we’re always thinking about how to not just win the bid once, we want to plant seeds and build up a campaign that allows us to continuously sell and market our city.

At every turn, we are trying to raise the bar, think outside the box and play to our strengths. Our reputation is based on elevating the experience for student-athletes, fans and visitors alike. Here is a great example: we won the bid to host the 2012 NCAA Men’s Frozen Four, which everyone thought was unheard of at the time, a NCAA Hockey Championship in Tampa Bay… the nearest Division I hockey team at the time was located in Alabama. Against all odds, 2012 was not only a huge success but we were then the first city to get the Championship back as quick as we did in 2016. Team Tampa Bay is committed to raising the bar, elevating the Championship experience and highlighting our destination and our resume is a true testament to Tampa Bay’s ability to host large scale events at a very high level.

 

A well-dressed person always has…
Confidence

Describe your signature style in one sentence.
My style is traditionally eclectic.

What piece of clothing do you wear every day or what item in your closet can you not live without?
I do not have any items I cannot live without. At work I will wear a lot of pant outfits and outside of work I like to wear workout clothes.

Do you have a favorite designer? Which celebrity is your style icon?
There is no one that I mimic my style off of besides myself. My style is a little sporty. When I’m flipping through a magazine, I’m drawn more to Jennifer Aniston over Kim Kardashian any day.

What’s your favorite fashion trend?
My favorite fashion trend right now are jumpsuits. They are very cute and versatile. You can dress them up and dress them down.

Speed Round
Less or More? Less
Favorite Color? Blue
Favorite Store? Anthropolige
Best spot to relax in Tampa? Buddy Brew Coffee
Heels or Flats? Flats
Tie-dye ~ hot or not? Not
Pants, shorts, or dresses? Pants

Follow Claire on Twitter: @clessinger_tbsc and Instagram: @clessinger

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