Kennedy Creative Events Team Spotlight: Whitney Hatano, Account Administrator
Having planned as many startup launch events as Fortune 500 gatherings, the Kennedy Creative Events crew knows a thing or two about rising stars. That’s why it makes perfect sense that when we first met Whitney Hatano in mid-2016, we instantly knew she was a shiny bright superstar in the making and quickly scooped her up for ourselves.
As usual, our instincts were spot-on: from day one, Whitney brought to the table a certain level of polish and genuine enthusiasm, quickly becoming a member of the family who seemed as if she’d been here all along. So, for this month’s employee spotlight, we sat down for a Q&A with this up-and-coming dynamo to learn a little more about where she’s been and where her already-impressive career is taking her.
How did you become interested in the events industry?
I went to school at Ohio University and was involved in a ton of extra-curricular activities that sparked my interest in this industry. I loved being a part of organizing recruitment, planning socials, and managing social media accounts with the sorority I was in, working campus-wide events with a couple organizations I was involved with, and taking as many courses as I could to educate myself on social media and communications.
How did you first learn about Kennedy?
I stumbled upon the Kennedy website by googling “event planning companies in Austin” and the rest was sort of fate. They didn’t have any available internships or entry level positions when I was job hunting before graduation, but then I checked back again about a week after I moved to Austin (yes, I moved to a city before I had job security) and found that they were in search of a marketing intern.
What does your day-to-day agenda look like as an Account Administrator?
My main priority is being an aid to the sales team and making sure they have everything they need to succeed with their clients, whether that be researching prospects for business development, creating contracts, scheduling site visits, or assisting in creating concept proposals or customer relationship management. As a marketing coordinator, I write, edit and submit social media content, update the Kennedy website, and work through promotional projects that come down the pipeline.
How did you end up in Austin?
My mom lives up in McKinney, so living somewhere in Texas was always on my radar for my post-grad plans. I came to Austin during my senior year spring break and instantly felt connected with the city. I was torn between Seattle and Austin, but once I visited both it wasn’t even a competition. I loved that Austin had such a big city feel with its own personal touches throughout. The job hunt was tough but I was lucky enough to land an internship at Kennedy as a marketing intern and then was moved up to a full time position after the internship term was over.
What’s your favorite district in the city?
Every district in Austin is so different from one another, which is why I love the city so much — there’s a little something for everyone. I really like to go out on West Sixth, but if I had to choose I would say Rainey Street District. It’s hard to beat a spot that has mimosas served in a boot-shaped glass, a food truck park, dogs at every bar and a rooftop pool… it’s like a one stop shop for fun.
Describe your perfect Saturday in Austin.
I’m the biggest foodie, so I love trying to brunch spots with friends — so far my favorites have been Banger’s (obviously), Snooze AM Eatery, and Holy Roller. I also have a sick shopping addiction, so I would have to say going to my favorite boutique store, Longhorn Fashions, is definitely on the recipe for a perfect Saturday. I’m actually a 70 year-old trapped in a 24 year-old’s body, so staying in on a Saturday night watching documentaries with my boyfriend and falling asleep by 9:30 would be an ideal way to end the night!
What’s your favorite part of working at Kennedy?
I have made the most incredible friendships here — the type of friendships that I know will last a lifetime. We had a retreat back in February where I really got to spend time with the team and get to know everyone on a different level. That was really important to me because I moved up as an intern and I was still feeling like the new kid in class, but it’s pretty incredible how welcoming and close the team is.
If you want to put Whitney and the Kennedy team to work for your next event, give us a buzz and let’s get cracking.