Allison Scott has been actively involved with The Broadmoor Hotel almost as long as Spencer Penrose himself.
At the end of December she will retire after 18 years as director of communications. Leaving will be bittersweet, she said, as Scott leaves behind many years making sure all guests were happy and satisfied during their stays. But, she is looking ahead, hoping to use her talents elsewhere and embrace new challenges.
Scott grew up in Chicago in a family of actors and TV personalities. As a child, she appeared on shows like “Howdy Doody,” “The Perry Como Show” and “Storybook Princess.” She gained experience writing and working in radio.
“It prepared me very well for all I do at The Broadmoor,” Scott said. “I have to do all of those things (that I learned to do growing up) — interviews, making TV appearances, writing, and acting.”
Scott has worked in public relations for 47 years, and before moving to Colorado Springs, she and her family lived in Aspen for 30 years, where she was active in promoting the skiing industry. In 2000, her son, Jeremy Abbott, then in junior high, was developing his prowess as a competitive figure skater. The family made the decision to relocate to Colorado Springs to ensure he would receive the expert coaching needed to become an Olympic bronze medalist and United States champion. After moving to town, Scott joined the communications team at The Broadmoor, and the rest is now truly history.
Scott said one of her favorite memories from her early days at The Broadmoor was the first time she walked into the employee cafe. She immediately connected with the hotel’s diverse staff — including many international employees — and when she heard multiple languages spoken all around her, she said it instantly felt right to be part of The Broadmoor family. She still laughs about once getting lost in the basement of the vast hotel property. “I had to call security to come find me as I didn’t know where I was!” she said.
One of Scott’s proudest achievements during her long tenure at The Broadmoor is co-authoring “The Broadmoor Story” with archivist Beth Davis and Broadmoor Magazine editor Tom Wilmes for the hotel’s centennial this year.
“From the moment I met her, I could tell that Allison is someone who cares deeply about her work and the people she works with,” Wilmes said.
For 15 years, Scott has been instrumental in producing the annual Broadmoor Magazine — making sure it’s full of amazing imagery, first-person stories and articles on a variety of topics about the hotel and surrounding neighborhood. “It’s my baby,” she said. “I’m very proud of this accomplishment.”
Of course, Scott, has many interesting stories to tell about her years working at the world-class hotel. She recalled when “Extreme Makeover” host Ty Pennington visited and was a staff favorite as he graciously stopped to greet and chat with everyone he met.
Not all memories are sparkling, though there are still silver-linings of humor sprinkled throughout.
In 2002, after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, tensions were running high when the NATO Ministerial Alliance met at The Broadmoor. There was a two-mile security perimeter around the hotel, and everyone had to go through a strenuous security check to enter the property. Scott recalled that some Broadmoor neighborhood residents were most annoyed that their garage doors mysteriously went up and down at will due to frequency interference.
Scott has many warm memories of the people who made her time at The Broadmoor sweet.
“My favorite person to see is Dow Finsterwald, former hotel golf pro. He is now in his eighties and continues to play golf on the hotel course. I smile whenever I get to see him,” Scott said.
Several years ago, two of Julie Penrose’s great-granddaughters visited the hotel, bringing many old family photos to add to the preservation of the legacy of Spencer and Julie Penrose.
“Julie Penrose is my idol,” Scott said.
As Scott’s days as a Broadmoor employee dwindle to a few, she hopes to keep ties with the hotel. She plans to stay involved in the community, perhaps taking a class at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center or becoming a volunteer at the future U.S. Olympic Museum downtown.
Keep an eye out for Scott around town; she’s sure to be moving and shaking no matter where she goes.