VALERIE FAILLA  |  valerie@viafailla.com

A born and raised New Yorker, Valerie Failla has a natural affinity for fashion, food and the arts. Her passion for design stems from her ever-evolving city surroundings and traditional Italian-American upbringing where all was handmade. Her grandmother and mother pushed her to bypass the Easy Bake Oven and instead, dig into her Sicilian roots and learn to make pizza and zeppoles from scratch as a child growing up in now-hip Brooklyn. 

After a move to Long Island, where her dad thought better to raise her and her sister, the never ending summers on the beaches of the south shore with school friends were a true gift she still treasures. Naively, she applied to one college, the Fashion Institute of Technology where her grandmother learned the craft of sewing and pattern making exactly fifty years earlier. She secured a degree in advertising and communications in 1995, and in 1997, a degree in cosmetic and fragrance marketing. The same month she moved into the dorm, she landed her first industry job as a PR Coordinator at French Toast Children's Wear, while she simultaneously worked at Chelsea Piers as an ice skating event coordinator for big money spending Manhattanites. Failla also interned in the beauty department with Elle and the now defunct Mirabella. Balancing college life and more than one job is how she learned to “grow chops,” as native New Yorkers say. 

Upon graduation, Failla landed a position with a high-end PR agency, where she worked on heavy-hitting clients including Procter & Gamble’s Pantene, Max Factor, Bain de Soleil, Olay, as well as Gillette’s MACH3, Hugo Boss, Old Navy, M&M’s and numerous other lifestyle clients and celebrities. In 2000, she took a chance and accepted an offer to become a morning show producer and that is where she first dabbled in the food industry working with chefs, food stylists and cookbook authors. She then made the move to Austin, Texas to pursue a position as a PR & Event Director for a private hospitality and real estate company, Girard Diversified Interests.

In 2008, Failla landed in Atlanta at 360 Media, Inc. where she carried out publicity for Fado, Escape to Blue Ridge, Wendy Blount Interior Design, Taste of Atlanta and many more, as well as led a team of interns. Upon the arrival of her first daughter, Failla shifted to a freelance role with the boutique agency, and in late-2010, she met Chef Ford Fry on a morning show production. Chef Ford presented an opportunity that she accepted, and for the next six years she helped to help grow his first restaurant into a dozen additional restaurants in two states and oversee a five-person PR & Event team.


 

GARRETT HEABERLIN  |  garrett@viafailla.com

The older of two children, William Garrett Heaberlin was raised in Georgia’s sweet, rural countryside. Heaberlin learned the meaning of hard work as an early teen when he worked at his grandad’s roadside gas station leading his family's top sales accounts and customers’ car needs. When he did catch a break, he relished in what his rustic surroundings offered, such as peach picking, riding his dad’s motorbikes and playing good, old American baseball. 

After he completed his Bachelor of Science in Advertising and Communications at Georgia Southern University in 1994, Heaberlin traded his small-town life for bustling Atlanta where he could pursue an advertising career, yet be an easy distance from his family and true home.

When he started his career, Heaberlin was presented with an opportunity that he quickly and naturally soaked up: how to sell. He worked alongside two northern gentlemen who capitalized on old-school sales rules and were the sharpest at their game. To this day, Heaberlin keeps all he learned from them in his back pocket. After a decade of sales, publishing and digital experience, Heaberlin landed a spot for himself in the advertising department at the prestigious fifty-five year-old Atlanta Magazine as Advertising Director, where he led sales for over 10 years. 

In mid 2016, Morris Media Network took notice of Heaberlin’s Atlanta successes and brought him on board as Publisher of Charlotte MagazineCharlotte Home + GardenCharlotte Parent, and WHERE Charlotte in an effort to reposition and grow revenue for each of the publications. Heaberlin’s cumulative years of sales and publishing efforts, combined with his passion for growing people and helping them accomplish their professional goals made him a natural choice for the role. Heaberlin will be incorporating a brand new digital plan with Morris over the next three years, strengthening the sales team and implementing the first-ever annual event plan for the four Charlotte publications.

“I get such a joyful sense of satisfaction from seeing others hit their mark after I have spent some time helping to guide or motivate them,” Heaberlin stated. “I’ve always been driven to exceed the expectations of others – it comes naturally from within my core. On the flip side, I am highly competitive by nature and enjoy challenging myself to beat demanding goals whether professional or personal.” 

Recently Heaberlin was the Sales Director of Bread n’ Butter Productions in Buckhead, Atlanta – the industry’s leader in food, dining, cocktail, travel & lifestyle video content – Heaberlin helped major brands tell their stories and activated their consumers through the universal language of food.

Heaberlin’s fiercely competitive nature also propels him personally. He and Valerie tied the knot June 2019 and are happily balancing their busy lives with three girls between them. Amid it all, he will still catch some time to sit and illustrate or abstract paint, and true to his Southern roots, pick up one of his six-string guitars to one day master the raw sound of rock and roll.