In our latest installment of Schoolhouse Faces, the spotlight is on Phillip Villegas, our trade specialist. Charismatic, hospitable, and oh-so knowledgable, Phillip spends his days working with Schoolhouse's trade clients. Big or small, near or far, Phillip ensures each client gets the most hands-on help possible, and always delivers information and insight with a smile. Learn more about Phillip's role at Schoolhouse, his registry product picks (he's a newlywed!), and his favorite Oregon day trips below in this month's featured Q&A.
Tell us a bit about your current role at Schoolhouse Electric.
"First off – I love what I do. As a trade specialist, I have the incredible opportunity to connect with a melting pot of creatives on a variety of projects: restaurants, small/large businesses, hotels, and multi-family projects to name a few. Our trade team has adopted the mantra, “Start with Yes” – so honestly the possibilities are endless. I would summarize the role as a combination of account manager and product expert – encompassed by delivering the highest level of hospitality and attentiveness to our trade clients."
What inspires you most about working at Schoolhouse? The people, the products, the space?
"Can I say all of the above? If I had to choose I would say the people. The people are the crux to why our products are so impressive and our spaces so inspiring. Some of my favorite memories at Schoolhouse are when our whole company gets together in one place (we’re still a small company so it’s not too hard). The diversity, the talent, and the personalities – it’s an amazing sight to see and incredibly motivating. Everyone in the company plays an essential role and you can feel the mutual respect and appreciation for each other. We’re truly a family."
You recently got married – what are your top 3 Schoolhouse Electric registry items?
"I did and my goodness is she beautiful! Abby and I admire thoughtful design and quality. “Want Better, Not More” is an ethos we fully support. Plus we live in a cozy one bedroom in NW Portland so we have to be selective! Our top three items consist of the Gray Linen Duvet Cover, the FINEX Cast Iron Skillet, and the Hairpin Table."
What design trends are you seeing in the design/commercial arena right now?
"It really ranges! Our trade team works with a variety of people: architects, contractors, engineers, and designers. Each individual/professional has a specific vision which is unique to their project. That’s one of the best perks of the job - seeing everything come together. We love having the opportunity to lend a hand on creating those experiences. I will say, the one thing I am most excited about is introducing our new Beacon LED to customers. Our trade clients have been asking for integrated LED modules for quite some time and our product and engineering team did a great job of creating a light that I know our clients will love. The best part about the Beacon? No tedious bulb replacement necessary."
Can you share a fun client moment/success story with us?
"I get to work with a lot of great people throughout the day, but one of my biggest fan boy moments was working with Coava Coffee Roasters on their new space in San Diego. I’ve always been one to waive the Coava flag and when I was given the chance to work with their team I was ecstatic. Coava’s spaces reflect, in my opinion, what they are about – quality and detail. I was excited to utilize our Brass Factory Modern 5 Pendants and our newly updated Luna Pendant Cord. I’m really excited to see the final product once it opens later this summer."
What does your perfectly-Portland day entail?
"That’s a hard question! It would most likely entail being outside (if weather was on my side). Portland is an amazing city and thanks to all the rain it’s lush and very green! When Abby and I get stir crazy from the city, we load up our car and drive to the Columbia River Gorge or the Oregon Coast for a day and drive back as the sun is going down – it’s quite the view. Nature aside, we’re also in the center of so many incredible places. We love simply exploring the city. There are always new restaurants, shops, and events popping up. It’s hard to be bored. If you have the opportunity to visit – Do it."