Boots 'N Business

The Colorado Statesman

Normally staid denizens of Denver donned Colorado western wear on Friday, letting their true inner cowboy and cowgirl shine at this year’s Boots ‘n Business annual luncheon. The event, which attracted about 950 community leaders, kicked off the 106th annual National Western Stockshow & Rodeo.

Political guru David Kenney of the Kenney Group, left, and Marc Spritzer of CoBiz Financial visit at the Boots ‘n’ Business luncheon on Jan. 6 at the National Western complex in Denver.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman

Businessmen wore spiffy cowboy boots and Stetsons and the ladies showed off fancy western shirts as a virtual who’s who sauntered through the grub line and dined on beef (of course) and beans.

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock welcomes a crowd of some 950 business and community leaders to the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce’s Boots ‘n Business luncheon at the National Western Events Center in Denver.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman

Gov. John Hickenlooper and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, in appropriate attire, talked about the importance of the Stock Show to the state, with its economic impact and educational scholarships listed high in civic benefits.

Dairyman Eddie Robinson of Robinson Dairy visits with Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey at the Boots ‘n Business luncheon on Jan. 6 at the National Western Events Center in Denver.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman

Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce president Kelly Brough, who hails from Montana and is no stranger to the western way, also stressed the importance of the 16-day Stock Show, which features 41 exciting performances from Jan. 7-22.

Gov. John Hickenlooper celebrates the opening of the 106th National Western Stock Show and Rodeo at the luncheon. Hickenlooper is wearing Rockmount Ranch Wear’s famous “beer shirt” festooned with hops vines.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman

And Denver Metro Chamber chairman of the board Hassan Salem saluted the proud sponsors which had joined presenting sponsor US Bank-Colorado (which he presides over) to make sure this year’s luncheon came off without a hitch.

Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce CEO Kelly Brough, in the white shirt, rides atop a stagecoach driven by Scott Smith as Gov. John Hickenlooper waves his cowboy hat to the crowd from inside the coach at the Boots ‘n Business luncheon launching the National Western Stockshow & Rodeo on Jan. 6. Denver Mayor Michael Hancock joined Hickenlooper inside the stagecoach for a dramatic arrival for the 18th annual luncheon. (Inset) Gov. John Hickenlooper prepares to exit from the stagecoach that delivered him to the luncheon.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman

The only small glitch in the festivities came when the main entertainment, a cowboy monkey named Whiplash, was set to ride his border collie and herd wild Barbados sheep for the guests. Apparently Whiplash, who’s been featured at numerous appearances at NBA games and other sporting events, was a little gun shy on Friday when it was his turn to take the stage. Brough and her compatriots stretched out their remarks until the monkey settled down.

Oakwood Homes CEO Pat Hamill visits with Donna Lynne, regional president of Kaiser Permanente of Colorado, at the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce’s Boots ‘n Business luncheon at the National Western complex.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman

It was well worth the wait as Whiplash, wearing white chaps with Tim Tebow’s No. 15 emblazoned on them, darted out on his border collie partner and performed admirably for the guests.

Attorney Steve Farber, a principal at the powerful Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck firm, chats with Kathy Brown, co-president of Denver advertising agency Karsh Hagan.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman
Roxanne White, chief of staff to Gov. John Hickenlooper, shares a laugh with Mario Carrera, a vice president and general manager of Entravision Communications in Colorado, at the Boots ‘n Business luncheon on Jan. 6 in Denver.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman
Tamra Ward, president of Colorado Concern, visits with EnCana Oil & Gas government affairs director Angie Binder at the chamber’s 18th annual Boots ‘n Business luncheon kicking off the 2012 National Western Stock Show and Rodeo in Denver.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman
Former CSU Chancellor Joe Blake, right, catches up with Jane McAtee of Southwest Airlines and Maureen McDonald of the Denver Metro Chamber’s Leadership Foundation at the chamber’s Boots ‘n Business luncheon on Jan. 6 on the eve of the opening of the 106th National Western Stock Show and Rodeo in Denver.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman
Denver City Attorney Doug Friednash compares western wear with Adams County Commissioner Erik Hansen at the annual Boots ‘n Business luncheon.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman
Among the snazziest of the dressers at the annual Boots ‘n Business luncheon, Mile High United Way President and CEO Christine Benero and OfficeScapes president Bob Deibel enjoy the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce’s event on Jan. 6.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman
Above, Xcel Energy’s Roy Palmer, senior vice president for Public Policy and External Affairs, visits with former House Speaker Terrance Carroll, a litigation attorney at the Denver offices of Greenberg Traurig, before lunch is served at the 18th annual Boots ‘n Business event.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman
Secretary of State Scott Gessler chats with Bill Bishop, executive vice president of Lockton Companies, at the Boots ‘n Business luncheon in Denver.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman
An estimated 950 business and community leaders fill the arena for the 18th annual Boots ‘n Business luncheon at the National Western Events Center on Jan. 6 in Denver. The event kicks off the National Western Stock Show and Rodeo, which opened officially the next day, and featured entertainment by the Westernaires and a talented monkey named Whiplash, who rode a border collie to demonstrate sheep herding feats.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman
Tommy Lucia, one of the country’s leading animal trainers, commands cowboy monkey Whiplash to ride his border collie during the entertainment at the Boots ‘n Business luncheon. Note that Whiplash is wearing Tim Tebow chaps.
Photo by Ernest Luning/The Colorado Statesman