What do you do?
Where do you work and what is your title?
I work at the downtown courthouse. I have been a practicing criminal defense attorney for 20 years. I also own Bona Dea Boutique and Tea House in Old Colorado City.
What do you do there and/or what are you responsible for?
As an attorney, I represent people who have been charged with a crime. I have taken cases from traffic to murder. My duties include (but are not limited to) going to court; trying cases; meeting with clients; going to crime scenes; reviewing autopsy reports; going to the jail; hiring expert witnesses such as doctors, psychologists, crime scene analysts etc.; and reviewing reports. As a businesswoman, I run the boutique and teahouse. My duties there include ordering the teas and purchasing the food supplies. I am also the cook and make fresh scones, European-type sandwiches and desserts for my customers. Because customers come by reservation, I must be prepared with all the proper setting of the tables and china (yes, I also have to polish the silver!). On the boutique side, I travel and purchase all the items. I then have to inventory, tag and input all the items. There are also a beautiful garden and fountain out back that require constant attention.
How long have you been doing this kind of work (total)? How long on the Westside?
I have been a practicing attorney for 20 years. I have been a teahouse/boutique owner for seven years. I have always been on the Westside. In my 13th year of practice, my husband was going to retire in the next five years, so I was looking for a creative outlet that I could transition to, allowing me more time with my husband and to travel. I found 1824 W. Colorado Ave. and fell in love with it. The teahouse/boutique is in the front, and my law practice is in the back (a converted three- car garage with loft). I slowly built the teahouse/boutique while cutting back my law practice to get ready for my husband's retirement. Now we travel all over the world, and during our travels I buy unique items for the boutique and for my jewelry business, which is also located throughout the store.
What do you like best about it (other than quitting time)?
Every day is exciting at the teahouse/boutique! I like having my own business and being able to expand or remodel based on my own ideas and what my customers might like.
If you could change one thing (other than pay), what would it be?
More room! Although the property is large, I fantasize about an even bigger place! I have so many ideas and I am running out of room.
What part of your work did your training/education never prepare you for?
I never imagined that after 20 years of practicing law I would be running a teahouse and boutique! I had no business experience and actually attended school to learn the intricacies of tea. I learned the business side of running a restaurant and boutique hands-on. I also never imagined I would love it as much as I do. Tea is facinating and all the clothes and shopping are a girl’s dream come true.
What makes working on the Westside special?
I have been a Westsider since I moved here in 1991. It has so much charm and character that I would never consider any other part of town.
“What do you do?” is a regular feature in the Westside Pioneer. If you know someone who has an interesting job on the Westside (but doesn’t live here), he/she might be a candidate for this column! If you know someone who might qualify, give us a call at 471-6776.