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Today’s FACE of Birmingham is public relations dynamo Krista Conlin of KC Projects. Krista’s effervescent enthusiasm and boundless energy coupled with her tenacious drive to succeed have landed her at the top of Birmingham’s power player list. Ingenuity, moxie and grit collide with warmth, sparkle and pizzazz … That’s Krista!
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Where did you grow up? And what brought you to Birmingham?

I grew up right here in Birmingham and wouldn’t have had it any other way. But I did take a hiatus from the South for several years. After graduating from The University of Alabama I moved to Europe for a couple years to explore, travel and all in all ‘sow my oats.’ Upon my return to the States, I moved to South Florida to attend the University of Miami to obtain an MBA. I loved all the years abroad and in South Florida but, after graduation the South was calling my name, so I headed to Atlanta. However, that period was short lived as I was ready to come back to my roots in Birmingham.

Tell us about KC Projects.

We are fashion forward publicists with a passion for what we do. We bring a fresh perspective to solving problems and identifying clients’ needs. As public relations practitioners, we are advocates and ambassadors, providing our clients a gateway to carefully cultivated media contacts. On a daily basis, the KC team builds brands and promotes them through media relations and digital PR. In short, KC Projects is a full service public relations agency that brands companies, positions entrepreneurs and always makes the client the top priority. It is our goal to ensure our client’s story is delivered to the right people through the best medium.
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Tell us about Birmingham Fashion Week.

Birmingham Fashion Week is a beautiful example of bringing unity to our community through fashion. KC Projects has thoroughly enjoyed working with founders, Heidi Elnora and Jeana Lee Fleming, in promoting and inspiring the rising stars of Alabama. Birmingham Fashion Week gives young designers, models and stylists a platform to showcase and explore the creative talents of Alabama.

How did you become such a dynamo at such a young age?!! (Seriously, you are the bomb!)

Wow, that is EXTREMELY flattering and thank you for the generous compliment, but for me I have never thought of myself as anything close to a dynamo. I aim to always grow, learn and explore from the opportunities in front of me. I never want to become stagnant. My life is all about the experiences and how I share them.
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Aside from public relations, what else are you passionate about?

Traveling and adventure feeds my spirit. For me, to be inspired, you need to step out into the unknown and witness the world around us. It builds character. Planning trips to new places gives me something to look forward to and gets me out of my comfort zone. Some of my recent adventures include Kenya and Machu Picchu. My wish list for new travels is endless but I do see Thailand and India in my future.

What did your bedroom look like as a teenage girl?

My childhood bedroom is the same today as when I left for college in 1995 (thank you, Mom), beautifully decorated in pink and more pink. The shelves are lined with all my childhood dolls. The best part of my bedroom, though, was my closet. It was not just the closet but the custom made spiral staircase in my bedroom that led up to not only a huge closet but a secret get-a-way room. I would spend hours up there experimenting with different fashions and styles … a teenager’s dream.
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What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

TRAVEL. My grandmother instilled a sense of adventure in me that continuously energizes my spirit. Travel fundamentally transforms us, stokes curiosity, expands awareness, introduces greater diversity, promotes patience, provides learning, reinforces the willingness to broaden horizons and gets us unstuck so we can move in new directions.

What advice would you give to others?

Don’t do anything halfway unless you are willing to be half happy and to always stay true to who you are.

What is your favorite thing to do to relax?

In the world of public relations, downtime is limited. To truly unwind I take off to the beach or the lake and, when I am really lucky, I leave the country. Anytime I can be with friends or family is the best relaxation for the mind.

Favorite local restaurant?

Whew … Now that is a hard question. Birmingham has SO many wonderful restaurants that it is impossible to choose one. I am a big fan of non-chain, independently owned establishments.

What is your must-have purchase for summer 2013?

Other than a plane ticket to Fiji, which will have to wait, I don’t have any immediate must-haves.
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What fashion item would you never be caught dead wearing?

Cropped tops. Trust me, this is the best thing for all of us. Not only do I find cropped tops extremely unflattering no matter what your abs look like, but as my brother once said, isn’t a cropped top simply a glorified sports bra?

What are you listening to these days?

I really do love all types of music, and particularly, I am a huge fan of the classics like U2, Van Morrison, Beatles, and Fleetwood Mac. These days I have Phoenix, Bruno Mars, Delta Spirit and Fun. on repeat.

What books are you currently reading?

I always have a big stack of magazines beside my bed. Everything from Vogue, Travel & Leisure, Vanity Fair and National Geographic to Forbes, Fortune and Time.
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Do you have any personality quirks or irrational fears?

Personality quirks, for sure, I have many! Irrational fears, nada. I would say I can be quite quirky on a regular basis (shoot, ask the KC team as they see it all), but I also always find humor in myself. I am the first one to laugh at my quirkiness.

If your house was on fire, what’s the one thing you would grab?

My precious Zayda (morkie-poo puppy), the genealogy books my grandmother created tracing my heritage back to 1200’s and a jewelry box of family gems.

Name three things you can’t live without (excluding friends, family and God!)…

Travel, Laughter, and who knows where I would be without my iPhone.

Thanks for sharing, Krista. To learn more about KC Projects, visit their website at www.kcprojects.net

And a big thanks to Beth Hontzas for today’s fabulous photos! If you want your chance to have fabulous photos by Beth, check out our fabulous giveaway for a $300 photo session and disc with high res images! CLICK HERE!
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