BY ANGELA CARAWAY-CARLTON | PHOTOGRAPHS BY CARLOS HIDALGO
From supporting the arts, keeping us in-the-know about celebrity gossip to running the hottest kitchens in town, these dynamic duos manage to juggle thriving careers and dynamic social lives while still finding time to celebrate love and family.
Director of Marketing & Public Relations at Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science
Public Relations Manager, Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts
You recently shared a fairytale engagement. Describe that moment. Our engagement on the stage of the Knight Concert Hall at the Arsht Center was the experience of a lifetime. When I [Joseph] arrived for a “cocktail event,” Gino suggested we take a selfie onstage, which was illuminated with only a ghost light. Then, a slideshow of memories we’ve created together over the past 10 years began playing on screens, while Beyonce’s “Love on Top” filled every inch of the hall. Gino got on his knee and proposed! I said yes, and then the houselights came on, revealing 25 friends and family members waiting in the balcony. Sharing this special occasion with our loved ones on a stage that has hosted legendary performers is humbling.
What do you like to do together as a couple? We’re such big cheerleaders of our amazing city and we love discovering new and hidden places. We’re also passionate advocates for arts and culture. Being members of cultural institutions like the Bass Museum of Art, Miami Film Festival and Institute of Contemporary Art Miami allows us to take in new exhibitions and performing arts. You’ll find us discovering new music and searching for vinyl at Sweat Records or hunting for unique finds at the Miami Flea or Lincoln Road Antique & Collectible Market for our new home.
As publicists, you both promote the arts and sciences. How do you juggle both loves? Our roles are the perfect blend of both of our passions—communications and culture. Being in the same industry actually makes our work-life balance easier.
WFOR-TV Entertainment/Lifestyle Reporter
You’ve recently become empty-nesters. What’s life like as a couple with your two kids away at college? At first, we had heavy hearts. We would go into their rooms and sigh. With time, those hectic, crazy nights with the kids trying to coordinate busy schedules and must-have family dinners were replaced by an easy walk to a neighborhood restaurant and returning home to a house filled with music that we like to listen to (and dance to!). We suddenly found a renewed sense of just being together.
In May, you’ll celebrate your 25th wedding anniversary. How do you keep the spark alive? We laugh a lot! We dance. We eat. We flirt. It begins with truly liking each other, and we enjoy spending time together. We also respect one another enough to give each other space when it’s needed.
What do you like to do together? We love to get outside whenever possible. On vacation it usually involves something active, like skiing, hiking or fly fishing. At home, we love to walk on the beach or go to dinner with friends and family. Both of us have intense jobs that require us to be “on,” so, in the off times, we truly like to relax and just have fun being with those that we love.
CEO & President at Luxe Fête Event Planning & Design Studio
Brian Theophilus James
Senior Counsel, Miami Regional Office of the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission Enforcement Division
What do you together as a couple? Brian: We’ve always loved to travel and we knew that when we started a family we would instill that love of being a global citizen in our children. Travel has turned our daughters, Johanna, 10, and Lucca, 8, into amazing storytellers. We’re fortunate that after every international event that Luxe Fête produces, the family joins Nathalie. Sharing these moments allows our family to see a world of possibilities.
You’ll celebrate 14 years of marriage on Valentine’s Day weekend, how do you keep the love alive? Nathalie: I make Brian look into my eyes when we speak, and then we end up laughing because it becomes a staring contest. Communication is key—in the good times, but especially in the bad times. We each make the other better, and couldn’t imagine it any other way. Happy for the day that we locked eyes in law school.
What do you have planned for Valentine’s Day? Ironically, we’re not into Valentine’s Day—we prefer to treat every day as one worthy of celebration. As luck would have it, our anniversary also falls around the Presidents’ Day holiday, which gives us a chance to always celebrate with a weekend trip somewhere close but warm, like Port Antonio, Jamaica. Otherwise, you can find us on a quiet date at one of our MIMO neighborhood spots like Vagabond Hotel.
Director of Corporate Partnerships & Friends of NWS at New World Symphony Orchestra
You’re newly engaged; how did it happen and what was that moment like? We love to host parties at our house. This Halloween, we threw a Game of Thrones-themed bash (we are both fans of the show). One of our favorite local bands, Electic Kif, even played at the party. Our driveway was basically turned into a stage, with people dancing in the street. At one point, Cleaveland took the mic and ushered me to the front. He then proposed, with both of us in full costume and with our dearest friends cheering us on. The moment was completely unexpected, quirky and so “us.”
How does music play a major role in your relationship? Music has always been a common thread between us. We met through music, when New World Symphony hired Cleaveland to play at one of our events, and we ultimately connected on a deeper level because of our individual relationships to music. Our most memorable moments together have been centered around music. Cleaveland always jokes that he is “jazz,” whereas I am “classical.”
Describe your ideal date night. We love doing “high-and-low” things, starting with something like the ballet or the symphony, doing a quick stop for tacos, meeting friends for a drink, and ending the night with salsa dancing in Little Havana.
Chef/Owner, Alter; Culinary Director, BRAVA By Brad Kilgore
Executive Pastry Chef, Alter and BRAVA By Brad Kilgore; Owner, MadLab Creamery
As a married couple that also works together, how do you make it work? And is it always about food? It’s definitely not easy working with your spouse, and one of the reasons we make it work is that it’s not all about food. We always have other things going on and we both have roles that we know we must fulfill.
Most chefs usually work on Valentine’s Day; do you do anything romantic or leave the holiday to the masses? We didn’t celebrate for many years, then we decided that we were going to join everyone and celebrate! We have been to dinner the past three years and we have a good laugh at how sappy we can be.
You’re both chefs who work a lot. How do find time for each other and what do you do in your free time? We try to carve out one day that we don’t have any plans. We like to stay home, order in and just catch up with each other. Being married for a decade, romance for us is doing the little things like a simple text that says, “I love u.”