The saying “find what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life,” could be Sunnie Morrison’s motto. The pint-sized dynamo has created an event planning company that captures her innate skills as well as her interests in a variety of areas.
The idea for what would become First Class Productions, Inc. started as a thought, Morrison said. “I wondered how I could use my interest and skill with staffing events to start my own business,” she explained. “How can I do something that I really loved doing,” she said of the event planning that she did for family and friends as a hobby because she enjoyed it so much.
Following her passion paid off because, “One of my friends referred me to one of her business colleagues to staff a card game,” which led to annual bookings for the event; as well as other opportunities.
More than 15 years later, Morrison has a thriving, well-respected business that coordinates events for others as well as First Class Productions showcase events; which include non-traditional beauty pageants, like Miss Runway Tween, networking and women’s empowerment forums and gatherings for entrepreneurs looking to connect with others and grow their businesses.
The foundation of First Class Productions involves the provision of trained professionals to companies hosting major events, primarily national auto shows. Morrison also staffs events of various sizes and types. Her company has worked with auto shows for BMW, Mini-Cooper, Audi, Volkswagen and others.
Exuding an easy confidence and calm, “can-do” demeanor, Morrison said when you discover your passion and work to make it your profession, courage and confidence flow naturally. She said her husband, Danny, manages the company’s contracts with auto shows; while she and her team facilitate the company’s other functions.
She traced her interest and natural skill for staffing to her teenage years spent working at the Belafonte Tacolcy Center in Miami. The joy of helping high school students and adults to “get work and move on with their life,” was fulfilling for Morrison, whose five-year goal involves owning her own facility that will not only serve as the venue for her many events, but will also be available for others to rent for their use.
Reading inspirational books helps to fuel Morrison’s motivation to succeed. Girl Boss is the latest to get her hyped about doing even more.
One woman Morrison finds especially inspiring is Janice Bryant Howroyd, the first Black woman with a $1 billion company. Howroyd, 62, made her billion with her company, ACT-1 Group, a staffing firm.