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Meet Deana Mitchell of The Realize Foundation in Baker Neighborhood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Deana Mitchell.

Deana, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Since 2011 I have owned and operated Realize Colorado DMC which is what I initially was going to write about. BUT when the COVID-19 crisis hit, I took it as the opportunity to launch my new mission which has been in the works for about a year… The Realize Foundation.

The new organization is a non-profit that will focus on mental health awareness; specifically anxiety, depression and suicide prevention. Our main goal will be to share personal stories through our website, social media, podcast, speaking and possibly other avenues. Secondary goals are to support current non-profits providing services in these arenas as well as offering positivity and encouragement any way we can. 

It is proven that if our thoughts are positive, our lives will move in that direction.

Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny.”
― Gandhi

Suicide kills approximately 50,000 Americans per year and that number has grown 40% in the last two decades. The percentage rate is particularly high in the mountain communities of Colorado.

My immediate focus is to get the word out online to help anyone in the world who needs it, but also to focus on our many Colorado communities of which I have called home. As a society, we must change the stigma around mental health if we want to conquer this epidemic. It is my life’s mission to make a huge dent in this arena.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Definitely not a smooth road in any way, shape or form. BUT I have been blessed beyond measure in so many ways. 1997 was the year I almost died by my own actions… I will be releasing my story soon. We are planning to launch the podcast in June 2020 and it will be a place where individuals will tell their personal stories in order to help others start the healing process. After 23 years in the restaurant & hotel side of the hospitality world, I started my company Realize Colorado DMC. As a small business owner for the last nine years, there have always been challenges but nothing out of the norm. Over the years, there have also been challenges with health, miscarriage, being apart from my husband regularly due to work, and other normal struggles of life!

So, as you know, we are impressed with The Realize Foundation – tell our readers more about Realize Colorado DMC, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Realize Colorado is a Destination Management Company that serves the state of Colorado. We are part of the Global DMC Partners worldwide network. As a small boutique firm, we specialize in high touch customer service, partnership with our clients, creative services and conference planning.

What sets us apart is our level of service, specifically on-site with events. Also, the fact that our whole team comes from the operations side of the hospitality industry. We have been in our vendor’s shoes, so we have unique relationships with the people we depend on to execute events as our partners.

I have been honored to serve our industry on a volunteer level. Destination Colorado Board of Directors (2018-present), Global DMC Partners DMC Advisory Board (2017-present) and SITE Mountain West (founding board member 2019-present).

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
Looking forward to the hospitality industry coming back after COVID-19 in a BIG way! Our industry thrives on the face to face meetings and we cannot wait to see each other. During the Meeting Professionals International (MPI) 12-hour virtual event for Global Meetings Industry Day (#GMID20) on April 14, 2020, everyone was expressing the excitement of all being together at IMEX America in Las Vegas in September. We should know more in June 2020 about what that event will look like and what changes will have to be made due to COVID-19.

Personally, I am looking forward to seeing where The Realize Foundation will go by the end of 2020. I think we will have national recognition by the response I am getting so far. Specifically, our hospitality industry needs this more than ever right now! Hoping to help hundreds if not thousands cope with their mental health issues. In the works are some customized teambuilding/corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities that will target mental health. 

Did you know… individuals that volunteer to help others improve their own mental health significantly?  

Contact Info Realize Colorado DMC:

Contact Info The Realize Foundation:

Image Credit:
Camara Photography

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