Account Director • KSL Media • New York City • Age: 34
Carla Louis believes that “ownership” is an integral part of success. Ownership of your home and/or of your business propels you to play a bigger role in life, she likes to say. Louis owns her current residence in Kew Gardens, N.Y., and is closing on a condo in Myrtle Beach, S.C. Ownership of her first business, a restaurant/lounge in Brooklyn, N.Y., is not far behind. “I’ve always had a passion for real estate,” says Louis, an account director at KSL Media, which assists entrepreneurs in achieving market recognition and enhancing their brand placement. “As a Black woman, it is very important to own equity. Real estate is always going to have value,” she says.
Louis’s mother, Liesse Louis, set an example of strength as a single parent who worked full time and attended school at night. Louis says that she truly appreciates the sacrifices her mother made and the value she placed on education.
Louis obtained a communications arts degree from Hofstra University and began her career in television before turning to advertising. At KSL Media, she is the account director for Grey Goose Vodka. Throughout her advertising career, she has worked with such blue-chip clients as HBO, Jaguar, Land Rover and Royal Caribbean. “When my business opens, I see myself doing both, running the restaurant and doing this job,” she says. “I can be successful at both because they both allow me to use my talents.”
In addition to her entrepreneurial endeavors, Louis makes time for the community and volunteers at the AIDS Center of Queens County. It is a chance, she says, to educate young African-American males about the AIDS epidemic that is affecting the Black community. “I hope that now, instead of in twenty years, people will see me as a person who made the time to work in a professional career, opened her owned business and helped the community,” Louis says.