September 2, 2020
Name: Celeste Shepherd
Title: Founder and Partner
Brief description of your job responsibilities: Manage and grow the company, oversee employees, produce work for clients in graphic design, administration, and bookkeeping.
Cable Member Since: 11/1/2010
Why did you decide to join Cable? When I first moved back to my hometown of Nashville from Austin, Texas, 10 years ago, my sister-in-law (who later became my business partner) was already a member of Cable and spoke highly of the members, programs and networking. When I decided to start Celebelle, I thought Cable might be the perfect place to reach potential clients and learn from other accomplished women … and I was right!
What have you gained/learned from joining an organization like Cable? Joining Cable was integral to the early and sustained growth of Celebelle. Some of our first clients came from networking at Cable events, and subsequent clients were referred by those first clients. I think the happiest thing I have learned through Cable is how women in Nashville support one another. Also, there have been some exceptional programs that really inspired me to do better and be better both personally and professionally.
How would you describe the benefits of Cable to someone thinking about joining the organization? I would tell someone interested in joining Cable that they should think of their membership fee in two beneficial ways: advertising and marketing, and professional development. The ad zaps are a wonderful and inexpensive way to reach a lot of business decision-makers, and the programs are inspiring and informative.
What would you say has been the single most defining moment in your career so far? Partnering with my sister-in-law, Janin Otwell, has been the most defining moment in Celebelle’s story so far. It produced a sea change that allowed us to grow professionally and also allowed us both the freedom to give our children (who were little at the time) the attention and care they needed. The kids grew, and happily, so did Celebelle. Celebelle’s tag line is Creative Services || Better Business. Our mission is to be a one-stop shop for entrepreneurs and small businesses. Having Janin, a Savannah College of Art and Design graduate, as head of our Creative Services, and me with 30 years of executive administrative/bookkeeping services as head of our Business Services is a perfect pairing.
What is your ultimate career goal? My ultimate career goal is to scale Celebelle so that we can not only provide exceptional creative and administrative support to as many clients as possible but also so that we can hire, champion and promote individuals who share our dedication to client service and personal growth.
What was your very first job? I’ve been working since I was 15 years old. My first job outside babysitting was working for a hot dog cart vendor in downtown Nashville. I guess I looked older and they assumed I was 18 … they never asked my age. For safety, as the only woman seller, they positioned my cart in front of the Downtown Detention Center on James Robertson Parkway. Seems like an odd choice, but I believe the thinking was that I would be safe with so many cops around. I had the highest sales that summer of any cart vendor!
If you could have one superpower for a day, which one would you choose? Definitely stopping time or teleportation. Time is the only thing I need that I don’t have.