Exclusive : Don Bleek Interviews Prominent Industry Publicist Kathy Liautaud

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Kathy Liautaud is a prominent industry publicist who worked with celebrities such as Kim Kardashian, Angela and Vanessa Simmons, Antonio and Aaron Reid, Wyclef Jean, Fabolous, DJ Whoo Kid, G Unit, Rich Dollaz, Olivia, and Red Cafe. I caught-up with Liautaud for an exclusive interview. We talked about when and how she first started KLPR Group, her cousin Wyclef Jean, some of her celebrity clients, future projects and much more.

KLPR Group is a New York based boutique public relations and communications consulting firm cratering to a board based clientele in the worlds of entertainment, fashion and music. They specializes in providing the following services: generating media, creating brand awareness and identity, product launching, special events, bookings, celebrity affiliations, public relations and marketing. The boutique firm also has a division which carters to fashion styling, image consulting, product placement and personal shipping.

I read in your bio that you’re an independent public relations practitioner and Internet marketer, could you please tell us exactly what you do and what are your job responsibilities?

I am the CEO and Founder of KLPR Group which is a public relations firm. I specialize in generating awareness and interest through an effective PR campaign, by obtaining media coverage that will increase name recognition, visibility and credibility to ultimately make my clients a household name.

Before you started pursuing a career in the field of Public Relations, you were a paralegal?

Not exactly, I was a paralegal then fashion stylist then went on to product placement and finally publicity.

Why did you decided to stop practicing law to pursue a career in the field of Public Relations?

I was laid off my job and took that as an opportunity to pursue something I always loved but was afraid to do.  I have always been a creative person and loved fashion so I took a risk and pursued my dreams and thank God it worked out.

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Was it easy to make that transition?

No I wouldn’t say it was easy, it was challenging but I was up for it and through the grace of God worked it out.

I also read that Wyclef Jean is your cousin and he kind of jump-started your career.

Yes he is and that he did, he actually assisted me in obtaining my first job in the industry. His wife had a fashion line at the time Fusha Designs and he spoke with her and in turn I became an intern and learned about the fashion industry.

You also was dipping and dabbling into two fashion business companies, which wasn’t too successful. Why wasn’t it successful and what did you learned from that situation?

The first company was an urban line so as soon as that fad was no longer popular so was the clothing line, the second company was creative differences between the owners. It gave me the drive to start my own firm so it was a blessing in disguise.

Exactly, when did you launch your own public relations firm KLPR Group?

Three and a half years ago.

How was it when you first started KLPR? Was it easy or hard to start-up?

It wasn’t easy it was challenging and I faced a lot of up and downs and made some mistakes but I was able sustain through the grace of God and I am very thankful that I never gave up and believed in myself and my company.

As far as finance, how did you start KLPR? Did you have money save, take-out a loan from the bank or had some investors?

When I started I was working a 9 to 5 and yes I did save and made a lot of sacrifices. I didn’t take any vacations and I started shopping at Target and Marshalls {laugh}. I didn’t have an investor, I invested in myself which I don’t regret because for the last two years my business has grown considerably and for the last 1 and a half I have made enough revenue that I no longer need to work a 9 to 5.

Who were and are some of your celebrity clients?

Kim Kardashian, Angela and Vanessa Simmons, Antonio and Aaron Reid, Wyclef Jean, Fabolous, DJ Whoo Kid, G Unit,  Rich Dollaz, Olivia, and Red Cafe.

If you had to choose one of your favorite celebrity clients, who would it be and why?

All of my clients are my favorites {laugh}, I can’t just pick one but I will say I am extremely grateful to Wyclef Jean for believing in me and giving me an opportunity to work with him. Also Jerry Wonda, Rich Dollaz and my newest client Melvin “Official” Watson. Each one of them helped me reach a new plateau in my career and I am very appreciative.

Are there any clients you regret working with?

No because each experience taught me something whether it was good or bad.

Sounds like you have a pretty busy work schedule. How do you balance your family and career?

Yes, I do but I am extremely blessed because I am able to work around my own schedule for the most part. Being able to create my own schedule I am able to spend more time with my son and ensure that I’m there for PTA meetings, basketball games and field trips.

As far as your career, what is your biggest accomplishment?

That’s a great question. My biggest accomplishment would be being able to do what I love while being able to make a living from it.

How does it feel to be compared to Mona Scott-Young?

It’s quite an honor and I am humbled by even being mentioned in the same breath as her.  Although I still have a long way to go to reach Mrs. Young success I know that I can be just as successful by continuing to trust in God, working hard and staying focused. Through Christ all things are possible.

What projects are you currently working on?

I am working with Super Producer Melvin “Official” Watson CEO and Founder of Phantom Boyz Music LLC on launching his new label JCM Music Group, as well as new comer and teen sensation Manny Delvalle who is the next big thing to explode in the R&B/Pop market. His single “Like Yesterday” is incredible and the video is amazing, I actually styled it along with Celebrity stylist McKenzie Liautaud. Everyone needs to you go to iTunes and purchase “Like Yesterday” which was produced by my other client Melvin “Official” Watson.  I also have Wyclef Jean who I am styling and we just shot a dope video for his new single “Historia” which is crazy. That’s on iTunes as well so check it out. Jerry Wonda is another client and I have a few up and coming rappers as well.

What’s next for you and KLPR? Any future projects or collaborations?

I am also looking to start my own foundation to assist young at risk women in the inner city by creating a community center that will help empower them by having female mentors educate them on how to succeed in accomplishing their goals through workshops, internships and career counseling.

Five years from now, where would you like to be as far as your career?

I would like to open up spas and I would also like to expand KLPR in the corporate sector as well as it becoming the go to PR firm of the entertainment business and beyond.

Do you have any advice for anyone who is trying to pursue a career in public relations?

For a career in PR you have to be an excellent writer and be personable so majoring in English and Communications will help as well as interning with a public relations firm.

Do you have any final words?

Do what you love and the money will come and never sacrifice your integrity for financial or career gain.


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Donovan is the CEO and Editor-In-Chief of www.dmfashionbook.com. For all general inquiries please email don@dmfashionbook.com Donovan has a BA in Journalism & Media Studies from the prestigious Rutgers University. He's currently studying entertainment and fashion law.