Freddie Georges, Founder and CEO
When Freddie Georges was a little girl, her parents would constantly return home to a redecorated home. Not once, not twice, Ms. Georges’ “home”-work was an ongoing occurrence her parents came to expect and eventually, to enjoy.
Ms. Georges’s natural inclinations were further nurtured when she entered Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of Interior Design—a program recognized by Interior Design magazine as one of the top five in North America. After graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree, Ms. Georges expanded her work from interior design to include innovative museum exhibits and installations.
Her first job was with the prestigious firm Design and Production, Inc. Based in Lorton, Virginia, D+P specializes in museum design, fabrication and installation. After a few years of straight museum work, Ms. Georges was able to expand into the trade show business through D+P’s small trade show division. Her first project was the AT&T booth at Comdex. Ms. Georges spent five years at D+P, developing an expertise into the world of trade show design and production. When Giltspur, now known as the ExhibitGroup/Giltspur (EGG), a Los Angeles-based trade show exhibit firm, recruited Ms. Georges in 1985, she headed west—where she has resided ever since. From the time she started at EGG, Ms. Georges was consistently the firm’s top producer.
After five extremely successful years with EGG, she started thinking about her next move. After interviewing with a few companies, she had an epiphany—she remembered back to her first interview for Design and Production in 1981—when she was asked the standard interview question, “What are your long term goals?” She quickly responded that she wanted to own her own company. So, she enlisted several of her EGG colleagues, and Premier Displays and Exhibits was formed. The company quickly grew and gained blue chip clients including: Bausch and Lomb, MGM, Fila, Pharmacia, Rainbow Media Holdings, King World and Upjohn.
In 2001, Freddie Georges identified the need for a new kind of company, one whose mission was to produce innovative interior environments, museum displays, trade show exhibits, and corporate events with customer service and value to the client at the forefront. FG|PG was launched with five key clients who had previously done business with Ms. Georges, including Rainbow Media, a client for more than 17 years.
A serial entrepreneur, Ms. Georges is a partner in FormDecor, a modern furniture rental business that offers the collections of Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson, Mies Van Der Rohe, Le Corbusier, and Harry Betoia, as well as other mid-century designers.
FG|PG is a woman-owned business committed to supporting other women-owned and operated businesses. Ms. Georges is an active member of the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), Exhibit Designers and Producers Association (EDPA), Women in Cable and Telecommunications (WICT), and Cable and Telecommunications Association for Marketing (CTAM).
Ms. Georges is a world traveler, with stamps from Africa, Europe, China, Japan, and the Middle East decorating her passport. She views her extensive travel as on-going education that enables her to bring a global perspective to the way she approaches business.
Jean Powell, Vice President
Jean began her career in the exhibits and events industry in 1995 as the Trade Show and Video Production Manager at Activision, a video game developer and publisher. In her role, she led the production of Activision’s annual presence at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3). Working in coordination with marketing, sales and PR teams internally, as well as vendor partners and show management externally, intensive production schedules required Jean to juggle a combination of logistics management, team management, and creative skills.
In 1999, Jean played an integral role in the creation of Ignited, a marketing agency that spun off from Activision. As VP of Exhibits+Events, Jean’s efforts contributed to increased revenues from $1 million in their first year to over $5 million by 2005.
Jean joined FG|PG in 2006, where she uses her diverse skills and sense of adventure, whether negotiating with city officials for permission for the U.S. Army Black Knights to parachute into a downtown parking lot or securing approval to suspend a 50’ inflatable Spider-Man from the Convention Center.
Jean takes great pride in her work and always delivers results beyond our clients’ expectations. She attributes her success in the events industry to developing strong relationships and maintaining a solid reputation.
Originally from Cleveland, OH, Jean is passionate about living an environmentally sustainable life (yes, she recycles and drives a Prius). When not working on cool projects for great clients, Jean can be found rock climbing in Joshua Tree National Park.
Melanie J. Chomchavalit, Partner and CFO
Melanie Chomchavalit became operating partner and started serving as CFO for Freddie Georges Production Group (FG|PG) in 2002. As CFO, Melanie Chomchavalit has responsibility for financial record keeping and planning across the organization. She also serves as a director and the secretary on the board of directors.
With the passion to organize, manage and direct, Melanie Chomchavalit always knew she wanted to become a businesswoman. She attended California State University, Long Beach and graduated with a BS in Business Administration in 1998. After graduation she was hired by Frederique “Freddie” Georges, Account Executive and Partner with Premier Displays, as her sales assistant. Melanie gained an extensive knowledge of the Trade Show Industry under the leadership of Freddie. In 2000, Melanie jumped at the opportunity to assist Freddie and her partner with the launch of FormDecor, by serving as the accounting associate. Melanie thrived in this position, finding it rewarding to manage and oversee the financials. She knew this was where she wanted to be.
In 2001, an amazing opportunity surfaced when Freddie Georges created FG|PG. Melanie eagerly joined Freddie as the sales assistant and accounting manager for FG|PG. In 2002, Melanie was promoted to CFO and offered partnership in FG|PG Here at FG|PG, Melanie continues to excel and fulfill her passion by organizing, managing and directing employees and particularly the finances. Melanie also has a very active personal life where she joyfully manages as a wife and mother of three.. She is very busy with all of life’s events, but with the passion to organize and manage, she enjoys every minute of it.
Laverne Ortiz, Account Manager
Laverne Ortiz joined FG|PG back in 2010 and has been in the Trade Show Industry for over 15 years. Previously, Laverne Ortiz served as an Account Manager for the Exhibit & Design Department at GES for more than six years.
Laverne’s extensive knowledge of the industry developed by wearing many hats over the years. To name a few of her roles, Laverne has worked as Show Management, the Show Contractor, the Exhibitor selling on the show floor, and as a Trade Show Manager. In her spare time Laverne loves to spend time with her children who are always engaged in many sporting events. She herself plays in a co-ed Softball team and loves to engage in many outdoor activities.
Dan Oken, Creative Service Manager
Over 20 years ago, Dan started his path to becoming a Designer by working as a Finish Carpenter and Cabinetmaker, both designing and building custom furniture. Dan later transitioned into the field of 3D computer graphics where he worked on over a dozen console game titles featured in the United States and Japan.
Continuing his work as a 3D Artist, Dan fulfilled his dream to experience working on projects with the highest expectation of 3D Rendering quality: Feature Films. He worked as a Lighting Technical Director on 6 Feature Films, including Planet Of The Apes(Remake), Cats and Dogs and Dr. Dolittle 2.
Now, with over 7 years experience as a 3D Illustrator and Designer for Trade Show Exhibits and Events, Dan continues to enjoy being a part of extremely diverse and incredibly creative projects.
Joey Esparza, Drafting and CAD Specialist
Joey Esparza is happy to tell you that he was born and raised in sunny southern California. He began drafting in high school and was fortunate to have a shop foreman as a father, who happened to work closely with drafters and engineers. Now Joey carries on the family legacy by working in the same trade. Joey has over a decade of experience working in the trade show business and feels as if it’s his personal video game at times. He thoroughly enjoys his part in “THE GAME” and truly loves what he does.
Some of Joey’s passions include: COD – MWF2 [Handle: SwiftKidGSX], Electronic Gizmos, Sport Cars and Mechanics, Gardening, and last but not least, The Lakers!