City native enjoys Las Vegas planning

LAS VEGAS – Parkersburg native Jen Dorsey enjoys working and living in Las Vegas.

Dorsey, a 1991 graduate of Parkersburg High School, is an event planner for Next Level Events. She plans parties for a living.

Dorsey recently planned the anniversary party for Siegfried and Roy and hosted an event Thursday for the new casino and hotel SLS Las Vegas.

“We work with Fortune 500 companies, casinos, weddings and bar mitzvahs,” she said in an email.

Dorsey, who has lived in Las Vegas for more than six years, said she wouldn’t want to live anywhere else.

After growing up in Parkersburg, Dorsey moved to Florida, where she worked in the mortgage business for years. She moved to Jacksonville Beach, Fla., in 2002 where a friend owned a casino junket representative business.

“At the time I had no idea what that was but she needed extra help so I dove in,” Dorsey said in an email. “We worked closely with all of the casinos in Biloxi, New Orleans, Las Vegas, Bahamas and St. Kitts. What we did was marketed to all the ‘high rollers’ from these casinos and arranged for them to go on private jets for the weekend to the casinos.”

Dorsey’s job was to get these people to the casinos and plan their activities, she said. The company arranged the dinners, shows and casino games. “It was amazing because I got to travel to so many different places and meet so many different people,” Dorsey said.

While working in the casino business, Dorsey said she started to get to know the important people from the casinos in Las Vegas. And after years of owning a successful mortgage company, it crashed during the rough economic times around 2007, she said.

“At that point we picked up and moved to Las Vegas,” she said.

Dorsey said she immediately started working for Caesars Entertainment, where she formed a team called Total Experiences. The team catered to a nongaming clientele.

“So basically we were doing the same thing with small leisure groups, such as (planning) weddings, birthday party groups, bachelor parties. I would arrange their rooms and all activities,” she said.

After four plus years with Caesars, Dorsey said, she decided to pursue what she really loved – being an event planner. She now works for Next Level Events.

She competed in the Mrs. Nevada America Pageant and was director of the Mrs. Nevada United States Pageant.

Dorsey noted she was a Red Wing at PHS. Her parents are Gary and Sandy Swisher of Parkersburg. She is married to Dave Dorsey, a 1993 graduate of PHS from Vienna.

She has three daughters, Sydney, 20, Lily, 11, and Chloe, 8, and a stepson Gabe, 10.

“I love what I do and would love to get more Parkersburg folks to this town” to see what Las Vegas has to offer, Dorsey said. “There is so much more to Las Vegas than casinos and gambling,” she added.