“If my family throws a party, I’m the one who goes all in,” says Charlene Adams, our new Atlanta Territory Sales Manager.
In fact, she’s just come back from a milestone event – her mom’s 90th birthday.
“We had a huge celebration. My mom loves birds and flowers, so I put together an amazing design with stunning florals and bird cages. I wanted it to be special for her,” says Charlene.
“It was beautiful – she was absolutely speechless. I told my kids to grab the camera so we could get her reaction. It’s why I do what I do. I love to help people bring their visions to life, to be there and to see their faces when it happens.”
Surrounded by friends and family in Georgia, where she moved from New York almost 30 years ago, Charlene’s never short of things to celebrate. But she came to events in a roundabout kind of way – through a second job she took to fill her evenings post-graduation.
“I was working an office job in Manhattan, but all my friends were still in college, which meant they were always working nights and weekends. I got tired of waiting on everyone, so I got a job at a special events facility waiting tables at night. That’s where it all started.”
She loved meeting the guests and getting to know people throughout the course of the night – the events spark had been lit. The industry called her back again when her kids were old enough to start school.
“I went to this antebellum-style place behind my children’s physician’s office and applied for a banquet server job. I went from server to bartender to assistant banquet manager to banquet manager. Then I moved on to a country club, where I took over as the clubhouse manager and event coordinator. I did that for seventeen years, and I’m really proud of the legacy I left there – all these events and festivals that have become new traditions.”
In her seventeen years at the venue she got to know Chair Covers & Linens very well – she ordered all her linens and specialty items from us.
“I’m very familiar with the CC&L team, and it’s exciting to be on this side of the process. I still get to be part of the creative side, which is what I’ve always loved. And now I have this amazing showroom clients can visit to see in person how their vision for their event will all come together.”
As the sole territory rep, there’s a lot to juggle, and Charlene’s always on the move.
“I’m constantly changing up the showroom, bringing new inventory out to clients and reminding them what we have in stock. We have so much that I’m always heading out with samples, swatch books and suitcases to make sure that it’s fresh in their minds.”
It’s a schedule that’s enough to leave you breathless, but thanks to a rigorous fitness regimen, Charlene makes light work of all that rushing around.
“I love sports – I play tennis and golf – and I’m a total gym buff. I used to do Crossfit, and I love that kind of workout. I love to be lying on the ground going, oh my gosh, that really knocked me flat. Sometimes it’s scary going in, but when you’re done it’s awesome. It does so much for your frame of mind as well.”
She refuels by scoping out the Atlanta foodie scene – and whipping up a batch of her famous meatballs, which her friends commonly request as a birthday gift.
“They say, ‘don’t bake me a cake! Make me your meatballs!’” she says.
“I’m such a foodie. I love to go to new places and try different things. I love good, fresh food and the act of seeking it out. One of the great things about being in events is that you get to indulge that. I went to chilli cook-off event a few weeks ago at a local brewery, and it was so good. There was one that was wild boar and alligator. We were supposed to vote on the best, but there were so many vendors we couldn’t even try them all!”
Never fear, Charlene – we have no doubts that in your new role you’ll have plenty of opportunities to sample the best your event-loving city has to offer!