A Letter from Michelle V. Hawkins
To all our readers and the Alabama wedding industry, I wanted to be the first person to share with you some wonderful news about the magazine that has been so dear and close to my heart these past 20 years. As everything in life changes and starts anew, I have decided to step away from Alabama Weddings.
It has been incredibly rewarding to create this publication alongside all of you and so many talents across Alabama, and it will always bring a special joy to my heart to think of the work we did together. But I am assured of the future of Alabama Weddings as I have officially sold the business to a longtime contributing editor of the magazine, Christopher Confero, who will assume the role of publisher and editor-in-chief, effective as of today. I am proud to know he will honor the Alabama Weddings legacy and will continue to work with you, our talented wedding industry, to create the visually beautiful pages for which this publication has been known for over two decades.
Christopher’s background and experience, along with his numerous regional and national accolades, are not the only reasons he is perfect for the job. When I met Christopher in 2008, I saw that same spark in him that helped me begin Alabama Weddings back in 2000; he had a determined drive, an ambitious personality, and an abundance of bright young talent. His creative vision and design skills became an integral aspect of Alabama Weddings for more than a decade. Furthermore, his loyalty to the magazine, his love of print media, and also his gained trust of other wedding professionals while working with the magazine are why I believe in his mission to continue building on all it is and can be. With that said, I thank you all for your support and now leave it in Christopher’s hands to guide the future of Alabama Weddings.
Farewell, but not goodbye,
Michelle V. Hawkins
Hello from Christopher
When I first began working with Alabama Weddings more than ten years ago, it provided a perfect medium to prove my creative skills in editorial design. I’ve been a small business owner for my own wedding design company since graduating Auburn University in 2007, but I also have worked as a photo shoot creative and graphic designer for various publications. You should see the mountains of magazines I’ve collected over the past decade. I have a passion for the printed page and the stories we share in every form.
That’s where this story begins again. It is with deepest pride and honor that the torch passes from my dear friend, Michelle, to me as I become publisher and editor-in-chief of this esteemed publication that she began 20 years ago.
With that also comes my responsibility to tell your stories utilizing all the talents I’ve cultivated over these many years, far and wide. I’m blessed to be back home, where my heart is, to continue building on the legacy of Alabama Weddings and contributing to its elevation.
That’s the love I’ve always brought to this table and the desire I have to lend my talents to benefit our industry as a whole. Any individual’s success contributes to all of our success and sets us apart as a community of the hardest-working people in our field. In Alabama, we do weddings like nobody else. I do also work within this industry as a vendor; however, I will not be advertising my business, Confero, or leading any Confero photo shoots in the 2021 issue to respect this transition time.
I bring with me a team of talent that will help drive a beautiful rebrand of the magazine for the 20th Anniversary Issue, including a 5-year former editor of Alabama Weddings, David Kirk. We have a lot in store for the future and we are ready to begin building on it, starting today.
Our message is simple – love.
The intricate ways in which we show and share that message will be my duty to uphold; with beautiful design, thoughtful words, eye-catching editorial, and forward-thinking in all channels of communication.
As we all have faced trials and change during this year, it is my belief that we must also have determination to press forward. It will be a challenge I take with earnestness to bring this publication to print yet again, because we will endure. Love will continue to love.
In the coming days and weeks, I will be hard at work to continue communication with each of you as we being producing the 2021 issue. I am here to be an open ear for all your questions, so please don’t hesitate to email or call me. I have a lot of ground to cover with everyone, but am full-steam ahead.
To our industry friends, I hope you can join us for this 20th Anniversary Issue of Alabama Weddings. If not, we will be here when the time is right and I will be ready to hear how we can help. I can’t wait for us to see what we create together.
Publisher & Editor-in-Chief
Alabama Weddings is the bridge between inspiration and implementation. We connect our readers with the creative community, empower our advertisers for success, and endure an evolving industry so that we may continue to inspire. Our dedication is to beauty, in all its forms.
We tie together all details of wedding planning and marriage preparation with our annual publication, digital platforms, and moments we share together in crafting our content. We are in the hands of the newly engaged, in the handbags of mothers-in-law to-be, and at the fingertips of all those in love with love. May we continue to be the trusted stewards of the Alabama wedding industry and the storytellers of love and authentic engagement throughout our great state.