We have some terrific news to share on the blog today: we have five promotions to announce among our key team members. Each of these has a key role in assuring that we are successful at bringing our products to market, or being able to effectively introduce them or sell them to you. One of these is the Crystal Bud Multi-Drop Chandeliers in the beauty shot by Beth Tilley Green above. Pamela Bailey has been promoted to Vice President of Product Development, Jenny Heinzen York is our new Vice President of Marketing, Kerri Shay Curtis has been named our Director of Sales Operations, Troy Hewett is now our Business Systems Manager, and Matt Ridge has been promoted to Sales Operations Technology Manager. These promotions will make us stronger as a company so let’s give them all a round of applause!
Five New Promotions
While there are fewer opportunities to gather in person these days, we still find that the strength we have as a company is in the talented people we have gathered into a dynamic work force, and these promotions will up the ante on our ability to thrive as we move into 2021.
Among our promotions is Pam Bailey, who moved from Director of Lighting Design & Development to Vice President of Product Development. “My new position encompasses all of Currey & Co’s product categories,” she explains. “I am the ‘ying’ to Cecil’s ‘yang.’ So while he will remain VP of Design and Creative and will continue to influence and drive our trends and stories that we wish to tell through product and presentation, I am now in charge of the product design department’s organizational aspects and the collective efforts of our designers in regards to business strategy and department organizational structure.”
Pam, who initially joined us in January 2019 as Director of Showrooms, says, “At Currey & Company we work in a most collaborative way and it’s never just one person who decides on a strategy. Together with the executive leadership team, we discuss and agree upon new initiatives that address trends in our industry and for our company. We all bring our ideas to the table, and if we all agree to proceed with the introduction of a new product line, or grow a particular category, then it’s on me to rally our design troops and overseas teams to make it happen!”
Brownlee Currey, president and CEO of the company, says, “Pam brings a unique perspective with her thorough understanding of the end user and consumer, as well as the retailer and wholesaler relationship.” Pam says she is quite excited about this new role: “There are many layers to my excitement and I’m extremely “nerv-cited,” a word my niece Ella coined, which is a blend of nervous and excited. Because our business revolves around product, there is great pressure (and support from all corners of the organization) to improve our approach to the product development process in order to thoughtfully elevate our assortment from market to market. I am very mindful of the important balance of respecting and preserving our history while modernizing our product engine.”
Though it will be a little while before she hits the road, Pam adds, “Robert and now Brownlee have worked tirelessly to build meaningful relationships with our suppliers for over 30 years so once travel resumes, I’m most excited to ‘meet the makers’ of our beautiful products to understand their strengths and challenges. Our manufacturing partners are simply remarkable in their fabrication, finishing, and quality and I look forward to visiting factories and working with everyone in person.”
Timing, she says, is everything: “It’s exciting to begin this role during a time when our industry finds itself at a pivotal moment—how we develop, introduce, and market new product is shifting before our eyes. You have to be open to being able to pivot in response to ever-changing environments. I’ve been calling it ‘Driving the Corona-Coaster’ and it’s a thrilling ride!” How lucky are we that Pam is manning the throttle!
Jenny Heinzen York
Also among our promotions is Jenny Heinzen York, who also joined us in 2019. She moves from the Director of Marketing to the Vice President of Marketing. In her newly expanded role, she assumes executive management for all areas of brand awareness, as well as growth initiatives across new and existing channels of distribution. With a focus on strategic marketing efforts and business development, she will utilize her extensive knowledge of home décor retail, interior design, e-commerce, and B2B to further expand Currey’s reach in the marketplace.
Brownlee shares about her promotion: “Jenny has made a strong impact on our company and our business, especially in 2020 when our marketing voice has never been more important. I’m eager to see the continued evolution of our marketing program and I could not be more excited to welcome Jenny as an officer of our company. She is and will be a great long-term contributor as our business begins to change.”
Jenny says about the shift in her focus, “My initial time with Currey was largely dedicated to learning how the company operates from the inside. I have known the business and the family for about 20 years through my previous jobs at AmericasMart and Home Accents Today, and came in familiar with the products, customers, and even competitors. I have spent the last two years traveling to numerous trade shows, working alongside sales reps, and exploring our internal systems and operations to fully understand the back-end of the business.”
She adds, “Now that I have a clear picture of the ‘insides,’ I am in a better position to lead the company strategically in all areas of brand awareness—with our customers and end consumers. My role touches everything from business development, website, email and digital marketing, catalogs, videos, advertising, print collateral, social media, editorial/PR outreach, events, and more. There’s so much opportunity ahead, and I’m thrilled to help lead the way.” What excites Jenny the most about her new role? “This is an amazing opportunity at an amazing company,” she explains. “In addition to putting my industry knowledge and background on the marketing and brand-building side to use, I’m especially excited to work alongside our sales management to identify and nurture new channels of distribution, and to lead growth initiatives across our existing channels.”
Troy Hewett has been promoted from Sales Operations Support to our Business Systems Manager. He says of his shifting duties: “My new position will require me to focus on Currey’s growth through our ongoing and future technology projects in a leadership role. I’ve been committed to providing our sales, internal teams, and most importantly our customer base, with more data (customer, sales and product) and making it easily accessible. I will continue that focus in the coming months with a real push for additional product data.”
Along with the technological details of our business, Troy’s understanding of the aesthetic and sales aspects comes from his history in retail. This included a stint with Storehouse as a design consultant that led him to being one of the company’s top sales consultants. “While trying to find another ‘Storehouse,’” he says, “I found myself working for Bassett Furniture. It was while I was working at Bassett when I learned about Currey & Company from a co-worker. Well anyone who knows me will tell you I absolutely love lighting and when I found out they were hiring I didn’t waste any time. I’ve never looked back and feel like I’m home!”
Though he is eager to dig in on his new duties, he says, “I’m just excited to be part of an amazing team! Everyone at Currey & Company has been extremely good to me and so supportive. I have a feeling my days are going to be filled with a lot of operational challenges and problem solving, for which I will have no complaints.”
Kerri Shay Curtis
Also among our promotions is Kerri Shay Curtis. Before joining us, our new Director of Sales Operations spent more than fifteen years in the retail and wholesale industry learning all aspects of the business in sales, management, and procurement. Her expertise in customer service and sales led her to the position of Sales Operations Manager for Currey & Company in 2013. With advancement in technology, her role in the company expanded to include mastering new sales systems in the company’s headquarters and showrooms.
In her new role, Kerri will be developing new service systems and streamlining the company’s efficiency while interfacing with customers, showrooms, and staff along with assisting department heads to create effective systems to service the customers and to continue the company’s policy of being “easy to do business with.” Bob Ulrich, Senior VP of Sales & Marketing, says, “I am very pleased to have Kerri on our team. She has been with Currey & Company for eight years and has demonstrated the willingness and ability to lead our sales organization through many changes. This new position will allow her to have a greater reach and influence over our overall structure and processes.”
Kerri says of her new role, “With my many years in the home décor industry, I have truly found my home with Currey & Company! They have allowed me to explore and expand my talent and, in the process, I have flourished. I am thrilled at the opportunity to continue to expand my skills and look forward to continue working with such a great company.” She says of her new role: “I am most excited about expanding my reach and influencing our overall structure and processes.”
Matt Ridge, our new Sales Operations Technology Manager, is one of our newest hires in this promotions line-up, as he came on board on January 1, 2021. Prior to joining Currey & Company full-time, he owned and ran a software business for two decades, the last ten years of that time, he was a vendor for Currey & Company. “So my new position is quite different and requires me to learn about new people and processes, and how to collaborate to adapt to the changes demanded by our new ways of doing business and life.” he says, “I am looking forward to focusing on the needs of a single company, its employees and customers, and working together with a group of amazing people.”
He adds, “I am very excited to be part of an incredible company, working alongside intelligent and dedicated people, helping them streamline their duties to enable their continued personal growth and success as the company continues to deliver exceptional service to its customers. By using my technical knowledge and industry experiences, I’ll be helping different teams implement new systems and improvements to existing systems so that information can be accessed and distributed more efficiently.”
Matt goes on to say, “Specifically, I’ll be managing the ongoing development of the company’s EDI platform and implementing new procedures to improve the workflow processes, managing the implementation of a new Product Information Management system that will give internal and external users better access to accurate and up-to-date information, and managing the software and systems used in the company’s showrooms, researching, developing, and implementing improvements to these systems and procedures.” A hearty welcome to you as you dive right in, Matt!
From Promotions to Products
We’re sure that each of these talented individuals who’ve received promotions will add significantly to our success as they help us to bring beautiful products to market! And, of course, those who aren’t in this promotions line-up are just as important in our success at debuting new products. In case you haven’t taken the time to visit our latest introductions, they’re live on our website now.