Pivot Spotlight: Jamie Ray
Meet Jamie Ray, Pivot's new A+D Market Development Director in San Francisco. We chatted with Jamie about her career and passion for design, creative pursuits, traveling the globe and coming home to San Francisco.
You grew up in Tennessee – how have your Southern roots influenced your career?
Even though I left Tennessee years ago and have long since lost my accent, I’ve happily retained “y’all”, and I love how it catches these San Franciscans off guard! Southerners are a warm, tight knit bunch, and hospitality and friendliness are instilled from birth, so business development is a natural fit for me. I sincerely love and thrive while working with people, building long-term relationships, and helping my clients achieve their design concepts, budget & schedule. It’s all about being of service and making the client happy.
What inspired you to join Pivot?
It’s clear from day one that Pivot has a true teamwork culture and it’s within the DNA of the company to elevate and promote design and well-being. Pivot’s core mission is to create environments that support and inspire people. Coming from an interior design background, that really resonated for me. As that famous Churchill quote goes, “We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us.” This is how all of us in this industry can make a real difference; it’s our positive contribution on the built environment.
What do you love about the San Francisco and Bay Area Market?
The progressive, forward-thinking attitude of California, I feel leads the country in design innovation. We are not afraid to move away from status quo and push the envelope in new ways to create. It’s why so many companies move their headquarters here, because the talent is cutting edge. Beyond the beautiful architecture and interiors everywhere, the design community here is extremely close; we all challenge, motivate and help each other. I feel fortunate in my 20 years in this unique industry to be inspired daily by this amazing city by the Bay and this fun-loving A+D community.
What is it about the furniture industry that is meaningful to you?
Furniture conveys the personality of a space and by extension, the personality of the company and its people. You instantly get a flavor for a firm from the selection and placement of the furniture. You could have an industrial space with timber ceilings and concrete floors, or refined neutral overall palette, and it’s the furniture that communicates the designer’s vision, reinforces branding, and acts as a recruitment tool to attract talent. It’s very personal and immediately impactful. I love the wide variety of environments that we, as a partner, can help designers create to meet their client’s unique goals for aesthetic and functionality.
What are your favorite ways to recharge your creative energy?
I love to learn, and I’m always trying something new, creatively. In the past, that’s been photography, crafts—like creating felt ornaments or taking an embroidery class in Mexico City, and lately it’s baking. I make a mean chocolate chip cookie. But my biggest passion, hands down is traveling—both with friends and on solo adventures. You learn so much about people, and new ways to connect with a wide variety of cultures while challenging yourself to venture outside your comfort zone. I recently visited Peru, checking off one of my bucket list trips, to Machu Picchu! Experiencing that richness of cultural history, unique architecture and landscape, it's the ultimate design inspiration.
It’s a great big world and I want to see it all!