This week on The Localist, Carrie is joined by Rick Rosenthal, professional Santa and owner of the Northern Lights Santa Academy and the National Santa Agency. Rick is an unsurprisingly jolly and charismatic guy, but he’s also a savvy businessman. Rick starts off telling us the difference between a professional Santa and a hobbyist Santa, and how being a professional Santa impacts your life as a whole. Rick then tells us a bit about what they teach at the Santa Academy, like the business of being Santa, ethics, and even hair care (it’s more complicated than you think!). Rick and Carrie then talk about how Santa is adjusting to life in a pandemic, including the protocol they have put in place, and Zoom meetings with Santa (they didn’t have that during the 1918 pandemic!). They wrap up the conversation with the financial investment of being a professional Santa, and Carrie shares the solid business advice that Rick gave.