Premier Resorts head honored by Eccles School of Business
October 31, 2008
Barbara Zimonja didn’t need a degree in business to go from a co-owner of a cleaning business to the president of Premier Resorts International, but she says she wishes she had one.
Zimonja has been an active mentor and national advisory board member for the Eccles School of Business for years.
She got involved at the school of business after volunteering in other capacities at the University of Utah.
"I think it’s a fabulous institution," she said. "What’s not fun about being a mentor?"
The school will be honoring Zimonja’s service to students and the institution by inducting her into its Hall of Fame on Nov. 10.
Zimonja has been an active member of the advisory board helping with such initiatives as trying to get more women into business education, said Jack Brittain, dean of the school.
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"She’s really quite active and seems to really enjoy working with the students," he said.
Chris Treasure, marketing and public relations director for the school said the Hall of Fame is a way to commemorate people who have not necessarily graduated from the school, but have done extraordinary things to contribute to university students’ experiences.
Usually one person is inducted per year, and past inductees include Larry Miller and Stephen Covey.
While students at the school hear from and meet with professionals throughout the year, the school has a few programs to connect students with a mentor who meets with them several times. Zimonja has served in this capacity many times.
Zimonja said she’s reminded how wonderful college is every time she visits campus and wishes she could be that age again.
"I enjoy it because I meet many people who are in a place in life where I’ve been, done that, and can clearly give some of advice from the gut, from the heart," she said.
Something she tells many students is to embrace mistakes because they’re invaluable learning experiences.
"I try to tell people, if you’re not afraid of making mistakes, you’ll get out there and have successes at same time and be in a posture to work a more successful model," she said. "If you don’t run away from them, then the success ratio should ratchet up quicker."
What: David Eccles School of Business Hall of Fame
Who: Barbara Zimonja, president of Premier Resorts International
When: Monday, Nov. 10 at 11:30 a.m.
Where: Rice Eccles Stadium Scholarship Reception Room
How to RSVP: Call Lindsay Nelson at 801-581-5292 by Nov. 4