Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content
:

DAA: Chip Perfect

Chip Perfect

Chip Perfect


Lawrenceburg, IN


Six businesses in some 25 years mark Chip Perfect’s career accomplishments since earning a Purdue University bachelor’s in agricultural education in 1979. “I’m a serial entrepreneur,” he says. “I chose ag education because I thought I could get started teaching and have a summer business.” His initial venture was Indiana’s first professional landscape firm, which was later sold to its employees. Next came the family venture, Perfect North Slopes Ski Area, created in 1980 on 100 hillside acres of the farm he grew up on in Dearborn County. Its startup time gave Perfect the chance to use his teaching degree at Rising Sun High School for four years, and he continues relying on it today to train a staff of 1,000 who welcome 250,000 guests “in about a 100-day season” to the southern Indiana lodge and slopes. Farming prepared him well for the ski business. “I already had the stomach for the difficulties of a weather-related business. In both skiing and farming, you have to be ready and willing to perform when the weather is right, and you never know when that’s going to be.” His unlikely success in a mountain-less state was recognized in 2001 when the National Ski Area Association gave him its Sammy Award for significant industry contributions. Other recent entrepreneurial activities — all in his home county — include launching a contract packaging company, partnering in converting a one-millionsquare- foot distillery into an industrial complex now housing a dozen businesses, and building a 10-screen movie theater and family restaurant. “My whole ag background propelled me in terms of leadership,” says the second of four siblings, who credits FFA, 4-H, and Purdue. “It’s the doing, the pursuit,” that fuels his activities, he says. “I like coming here. I’m excited about what’s going to happen. And I like creating new ideas.” “The whole process of learning how to prepare for a class, how to learn, and how to study was huge for me. And learning to be an educator is valuable in what I do now, training managers.”