Red carpets. Gift suites. Photo shoots. 3 AM phone calls from Italy. Stars on the Walk of Fame. Film premieres. VIP lists. At my last job, I saw and did it all. I was lucky enough to work as a publicist for one of the major entertainment firms, assisting on a client team that included major stars of screen and stage. Above is a photo of me working the red carpet at The TV Guide Emmy Party where it looks like I’m mocking Teri Hatcher but really I just stand like that!
Every day, I arrived to our West Hollywood office, took a deep breath, grabbed a mug of coffee, and dove into the day. It felt that way sometimes, like taking a deep breath before you swim underwater for hours. When you’d come up for air, it would be 7 PM, and you’d head out to evening events in the city or to meet with other agency pals for drinks somewhere fabulous.
I organized international press tours, photo shoots for magazine covers, and one time, a Valentine’s Day present for a client’s fiancé that included calling every adult video store in a 50-mile radius. I had a better seat than Spike Lee at the Emmys. Samuel L. Jackson complimented my outfit at a Walk of Fame ceremony. Eva Mendes is one of the kindest souls on the planet, and always thanked me in purses.
Along the way, I picked up skills that serve me to this day. ‘No’ and ‘I never heard back’ are never acceptable answers. You work until the job is done. Always say thank you. Remember birthdays. Celebrate everything with champagne and flowers. Lifelong friendships can be built entirely through emails and texting. ‘Xoxo’ is an acceptable way to sign emails to clients and colleagues.
Above all, assistants get the real work done, so be kind, and always remember their names. They’re going places.
This “In a Past Life” spotlight was written by Meridian Group’s Kate Lewis, director of public relations.