Even as a young girl in Waco, Texas, there were hints that Elizabeth Swift was a first-class hostess in the making as she spent many happy childhood hours enamored with the art of cooking and entertaining, even serving her very first soufflé to the family’s yard man.
After graduating from the University of Texas with a degree in marketing and business, Elizabeth moved to Washington, D.C. working in a staff position with the Republican National Committee where she planned and coordinated many critical breakfasts, luncheons, receptions and dinners for the RNC. In her precious spare time, Elizabeth began catering small events from her apartment kitchen including a friend’s wedding where she insisted on ironing antique linens and making the cake from scratch – the same personal touch and ‘extra mile’ attitude that have become synonymous with Swift + Company. As her client list grew, it was clear Elizabeth was destined for a career in event planning where she could combine her love of entertaining with earning a living.
In 1987, Elizabeth marked her return to Texas with the launch of Elizabeth Swift Catering, now Swift + Company. Elizabeth’s ability to execute and serve “luxury restaurant quality” food at catered events has resulted in huge success. Now over 30 years later Swift + Company has grown to a substantial full-service event production and party rental business with a staff of over 55 creative professionals.
Today, Swift + Company caters to the needs of Texas’ leading corporations and legendary hostesses while offering turnkey services for catering, wedding design, flowers, event management, party rentals, and more. Elizabeth and her team have worked all over Texas, and nationally stretching as far as New York. Elizabeth has produced events honoring the last 4 sitting Presidents of the United States, a Hall of Fame event in Cooperstown and many major retailers and corporations headquartered in Houston. But whether in a backyard or a ballroom, Copeland’s remarkable team of professionals (many with her since the beginning) continue a tradition of excellence in quality, service and integrity.
Whether it’s following a client’s one-hundred-year-old family recipe for praline cake (complete with old-fashioned measurements and a handful of lard) or capturing the essence and elevating the taste of grilled quail around a campfire – Elizabeth and her happy-hearted staff consider every event an opportunity to deliver an authentic and memorable moment to you and your guests.
Elizabeth resides in Houston and is married to Morgan L. Copeland, Jr., a partner with the law firm of Copeland & Rice, L.L.P. They have three daughters: Nell, Kate and Carson. All three daughters are students and lacrosse players at Northwestern University. Elizabeth and Morgan can be found cheering in the NU stands and roaming the sidelines at most of their games.
Elizabeth enjoys spending down time with her family, and especially enjoys vacations in Colorado, California and Europe. Elizabeth’s passions include exercise, design, travel, and cooking big (and hard to clean up) dinners with friends and family at their Galveston bay house, or simply in their backyard kitchen.
Chelsea serves as Swift + Company’s Marketing Coordinator. She helps maintain Swift + Company’s pristine reputation and executes marketing plans on the company’s behalf. She graduated from the University of Texas at San Antonio with degrees in both Marketing and International Business. While in college, she was introduced to the event industry and her passions for marketing and event production have been growing since.
Her favorite part about her job is sharing the incredible projects and collaborations that our team is a part of through advertising, marketing, and social media. Each event has a story and she is excited to be the one to tells that story.
Chelsea says, “I am excited to be a part of the Swift + Company team because of the collaborative environment and the diversity of our projects. I love that everyone is passionate about what we are doing and each project brings something new and exciting to share.”
When she is not working on the next marketing idea, you can find her at a local coffee shop or checking out the latest Houston hotspot.
“Live the most vividly decorated temporary life that you can.” – Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Big Magic
David works in Swift + Company’s rental division helping clients find exactly what they need for their next event. David has been in the industry for many years and is known for his great working relationships with his clients. His favorite part about being an Event Rental Specialist at Swift + Company is working with the management, clientele and all of our staff.
In his spare time, David enjoys biking, walking and decorating, which is why he is perfect for his position. One lesson from mom that he still carries with him today is to show up for work every day and do your absolute best!
David puts client satisfaction at the top of his to-do list and likes to have multiple meetings with them along the way to provide the best service.
Harold serves as Swift + Company’s Director of Operations. He is responsible for the leadership of the Swift + Company sales team, maintaining and enhancing client relationships and developing new business opportunities.
Harold has been in the events industry over 25 years and has held leadership positions in local and national professional organizations. He recently acquired CPCE (Certified Professional in Catering and Events) designation highlighting his dedication to professionalism and excellence to his clients.
His favorite part about Swift + Company is that the company is multifaceted and there’s never a dull moment. Our rentals, decor, floral and catering divisions work beautifully together and as separate components. Harold enjoys the diversity of our Swift + Company clients.
In his free time, you can find Harold exploring the Houston restaurant scene and using his creative eye to take photos. He is also very interested in technology and learning new ways it can improve our lives.
Harold’s favorite quote is “If you’re not inspired by what you’re saying, say something else.”
Tom joined the Swift + Company team in 2018 and serves as a Decor Specialist. He has over 16 years of event design experience and is knowledgable of the design trends making him one of our go-to event designers.
One of his favorite things about his job is taking an idea from a client and creating design concepts to make their idea a reality.
When he’s not designing a client’s event, Tom enjoys spending time relaxing on the beach in Galveston. His favorite flower to design arrangements with is the Japanese Ranunculus.
“Love is like a flower you’ve got to let grow.”
Melanie Hansen is an event planner extraordinaire! She has been a part of Houston’s Event Industry for over ten years and received her Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Houston in Hotel and Restaurant Management with an emphasis in Event Production. Throughout her career, she has produced fashion shows, weddings, art gallery openings, auto dealer public relations events and so much more! For Swift + Company, Melanie helps maintain our Catering Productions by creating new business opportunities and cultivating client relationships.
Her favorite part of her work is the opportunity to express her creativity. Food is an artistic expression that can be communicated in multiple ways, and finding exactly the right way to connect with her clients is very fulfilling. Her favorite part of Swift + Company is being surrounded by the incredible team members that make our business so successful! She says “being part of a team who encourages you to do your best work is the most important part of any job.”
She spends her free time searching for antique stores throughout rural Texas and decorating her home with the artwork she finds. She enjoys cycling Buffalo Bayou Park or going to a hot yoga class.
“The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
Being the son of a chef, made the love and passion for food a centerpiece in Chef Richard’s life. With over 15 years of experience in the food industry and an Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts, he brings a wealth of knowledge to Swift + Company Catering. His favorite part of being a chef is getting to be creative and expressing himself through the food he creates.
Chef Richard comments that he loves working at Swift + Company because he will be able to make a big contribution to the team and his opinion is always valued.
In his spare time, Chef Richard is an avid sports fan, gardener, and plant lover. He enjoys trying new restaurants and kayaking with his family when the weather is nice.
Teresa is the glue that keeps Swift + Company together. She takes care of Swift + Company’s billing and payables. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Louisiana Tech University. She enjoys her job because it’s like putting a puzzle together and making it all fit correctly to produce the whole picture.
Teresa comments that she loves working at Swift + Company because she enjoys watching the creative minds get together and produce fantastic events.
In her spare time, Teresa’s favorite things to do are spending time with her family and going shopping!
Her favorite quote is, “Some pursue happiness, others create it!”
Thad makes sure the warehouse operations run smoothly. With over 20 years in the rental and catering business, he has developed a passion for implementing proper procedures and paying attention to detail to make sure Swift + Company’s product is in top shape. His favorite part about his job is that every day brings a new opportunity to start a new project.
Thad comments that he enjoys working at Swift + Company because it is not just tables and chairs, every event is produced with a special Swift touch.
In his spare time, Thad likes to hike the area state parks and even travel to parks throughout the United States.
His favorite quote is, “If you can wake up every morning loving what you do help and inspire others around you to be better than they were yesterday then you know you’re doing something right in business and in life.”
Born and raised in a Cougar family, Lorin naturally chose to attend the University of Houston! She graduated from The Hilton Hotel and Restaurant Management College in 2012, then started with Swift + Company immediately after graduation. After seven years of producing events and managing the beverage department, she moved to Nashville with her husband where I expanded my event sales knowledge with a full-service event planning and venue company.
She just recently moved back to Houston and immediately joined Swift + Company to continue growing in her events career. Lorin says her passion for events begins with creative freedom, pushing the envelope with designs, logistics, etc. She loves that Swift + Company gives her the tools and resources for the job, but never limits creativity, collaboration, or curiosity. She says a common assumption about creative people is that they’re not math or numbers people, but it is a big part of successfully producing an event. And that just happens to be a part she really loves!
When she’s not at work, Lorin spends all of her time with my family at home. She enjoys the Houston food scene by ordering take-out and loves introducing her baby to new foods!
Jorge is one of our talented chefs at Swift + Company.
Pedro has been working for Elizabeth Swift Copeland since the company’s inception. He is responsible for overseeing the kitchen on a daily basis, ordering the necessary food for upcoming events and managing the food preparations at all of our parties. Pedro enjoys the challenges and growth opportunities his job brings. Being a chef takes a lot of work prepping, cooking and setting up for our large events, but nothing excites him more than to see the final product and knowing our clients are satisfied with not only the taste but the presentation of the food.
Prior to working at Swift + Company, Pedro worked as a waiter, and with no previous culinary training, Elizabeth hired him to help her in the kitchen. Over time, he taught himself how to cook in the culinary industry. Pedro now cooks for hundreds of people and leads all aspects of Swift + Company’s culinary operation. He admires that Elizabeth believes in her employees and their capabilities. She gives you the responsibilities and her trust, which allows you to grow.
Growing up Pedro always desired to work in the culinary industry. He admired the artistry of food and wanted to learn how to cook and become a culinary artist.
The best advice he gives his team is to do your work with pride, not because it is your job but because you love what you are doing.
Jaime is instrumental in making the day to day activities at the Swift + Company kitchen go smoothly.