Occupation: Executive Secretary, Realty Executive Associates
Family: Husband: Jacob Slingluff; daughter, Macie, 11; stepdaughters, Abigail, 6, and Josie, 4.
Crystal Welch understands a basic truth about business. If a person is rude to the secretary, they’re most likely not going to make it past the front door to be rude to the boss, said the Realty Executive Associates executive secretary.
“To get to anybody you really want to talk to you, you better be nice to us. We’re the reason you get to talk to or not talk to someone,” she says of executive secretaries.
Welch, who grew up in Blount County, is a William Blount High School graduate who worked at First Tennessee operations when they were off Robert C. Jackson Drive, and then landed a job with Realty Executives, eventually becoming an executive secretary. “Agents put a lot of trust in us so they can be out and not stuck in the office all time.”
Welch says being a mom is the best part of her life. “My Macie is the best kid ever. God blessed me with the perfect child. He knew that’s what I needed. When she was 3, she was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. She’s a tough, brave little girl. She’s healthy and never gets sick.”
She knew her husband Jacob Slingluff when they were in elementary and middle school, and it was a few years after high school she bumped into him again and, according to her, he knew right away they were going to get married.
“I walked up and said ‘Jacob Slingluff,’ and he said, ‘Nobody knows my name.’ He said from then on he was going to marry me because I could remember his name. It was very sweet. We didn’t date. We were friends forever and got married. There was no dating or engagement, we just got married.”
Welch says if she could run away, she would want to go to the beach, specifically Charleston, S.C. “We always talk about running way. He’s from Texas and could leave easily but all my family is here. Still, one day I hope to run away to the beach. Any beach would do, but if I had my druthers I would say Charleston.”
When she’s not working at the office or with family, she’s has her own business.
“I just started Thirty-One Gifts, which is selling monogrammed purses and bags. That’s what I do in my free time. I have always wanted to be an entrepreneur. It requires you to be uber-organized and have your stuff together. This side of me -- going out doing home parties -- is good because I hate speaking in front of people and it lets me meet more people and come out of my shell.”
Here is Crystal Welch:
Who are you most like, your mother or your father and why?
“My mom, definitely. She’s tough. She taught me to be tough and to be able to take care of myself. A lesson that’s proved invaluable.”
What is your favorite quote from television or a movie?
“You should be kissed and often, and by someone who knows how.” - Rhett Butler, “Gone with the Wind.”
What are you guilty of?
“Always being right. Is that a crime?”
What is your favorite material possession?
“Picture albums! And my purple BlackBerry. My whole life is contained in both.”
What are you reading currently?
“‘Mommywood,’ by Tori Spelling. I have a teensy obsession with ‘T.’ Love her!”
What was your most embarrassing moment?
“Walking out of a bathroom in Myrtle Beach with my skirt tucked into my underwear. Enough said.”
What are the top three things on your bucket list?
“I don’t have one. I just turned 30. Check back with me in a few years.”
What is one word others often use to describe you and why?
“Spunky. I’m outspoken.”
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
“My over-analyzation of everything, ie., these Chatroom questions.”
With whom, living or dead, would you most like to have a long lunch?
“My husband. We never get to have lunch together. It’s mushy, but true.”
If a movie were made about your life, who would play you and why?
“Minnie Driver. We rock the same dark curls, andI’ve always loved British accents.”
If you could go back in time for a week, what time period or year would you visit?
“The ’70s as a teenager. I think it would be so much fun!”
Other than your parents, who has had the biggest influence on your life and why?
“My daughter, Macie. She is the bravest, most kindhearted person I’ve ever known and my greatest joy.”
Do you Myspace, Facebook or Twitter?
“Myspace: Negligently, I just can’t bear to delete my profile; Facebook: Constantly- who doesn’t; and No, I won’t tweet.”
Are you a cat person or a dog person?
“Dog. I do love those ‘I can has cheezburger’ cats on the Internet though.”
What’s the worst job you have ever had?
“I worked at a daycare for ONE day. A kid sneezed on me. It wasn’t pretty.”
What was your favorite Saturday morning cartoon and why?
“Care Bears. How can you resist those cute lil bellies? Plus, their cloud car was super cool.”
What irritates you?
“Things out of place.”
What’s one place in Blount County everyone should visit?
“I’d have to say the Greenbelt. Most especially the part behind the library. It is a favorite spot of mine. I remember loving the fountain there as a kid.”
If you could go back in time, what advice would you give yourself at 18?
“Enjoy it. I was an adult way before my time.”