CD: Where are you from and what made you want to come to Charleston?
Cat Taylor: I am from Perrysburg, Ohio, and I was looking for a College that was in an urban setting with great food and opportunities outside just the classroom. So, when I stepped off the plane in Charleston I was sold. It was a nice change of pace from Ohio.
CD: Can you tell me more about what you do at Byrdhouse?
CT: Byrdhouse is a full service public relations firm. We do media relations, community relations, social media, and marketing. We work primarily with hospitality accounts and most of our clients are here in the south: Savannah, Charleston and one in Chicago. We work with our clients in not just the opening but keeping them relevant after the opening.
CD: What made you want to be part of Byrdhouse PR?
CT: I interned for Annie Hamnett, the owner of Byrdhouse PR in 2009. She taught me a lot about the business and taught me more about hospitality PR. I loved that we were working for really cool and local restaurants and I felt like we were making a difference in their business. I originally left and did the “big city thing” but always had Charleston in the back of my mind. Then when Annie suggested that we become business partners, I jumped at it.
CD: What makes you love what you do?
CT: I love what I do for a lot of reasons. I think the most important thing about PR is being able to work with clients that you really believe in. So, we work with these people who are putting out incredible products and we get to be part of that. We make a difference in the community by highlighting these really talented people. If you take a second to think about all the people who work in a restaurant and how important it is that they stay busy, I like to think that we have a small role in making sure that those restaurants stay busy and stay inspired. Charleston is such a unique place because there is always some sort of giving back to the community. These chefs and people in this industry are working with purveyors and farmers to make sure they are resourcing locally and keeping business based out of Charleston. There has been this national microscope on Charleston- everyone wants to visit and live here. Which makes a good challenge for us, but we take advantage of this by making sure people know where to go when they are here.
CD: If you did not end up working for Byrdhouse, where else would you see yourself?
CT: Definitely in Charleston. In my dream world, I would own a tiny little bistro downtown. I would be a general manager like working the door. Otherwise, I couldn’t see myself working anywhere else than with Annie at Byrdhouse.
All photos courtesy of Cat Taylor.