Heather Ferdinand Gonzales, founder and CEO of event production company Laissez Faire, LLC, is an award-winning special events executive, event planning strategist, and experiential marketing expert. Heather provides high-level marketing and event planning expertise to a diverse suite of clients across the U.S., including the National Fried Chicken Festival, Essence Music Festival, Live Nation Entertainment, La Fete du Rose, NBA All-Stars, Voodoo Music Experience, and Camille Rose Naturals among others. Specializing in design, logistical planning, and brand management, Heather focuses on optimizing her clients’ experiences while curating budget-conscious events for large-scale festivals, concerts, conferences, corporate, and luxury events.
Heather is also the Senior Event Specialist for OMRents, where she assists clients with executing their vision, identifying rental needs, and day-of project management tasks to maintain event set-up schedule. A native New Orleanian, Heather always brings a fresh, innovative perspective, and skilled eye for design to every project.
Additionally, Heather serves as a production liaison at Loyola University of New Orleans, assisting all film production and scouting needs on behalf of the university.
Heather has served on the Edible Evening Committee of FirstLine Schools’ Edible Schoolyard in New Orleans since 2015 and she also sits on the board of directors for the Public Relations Society New Orleans Chapter In 2019, she was awarded the Ball of Fire for bringing enthusiasm and excitement to the PRSA NOLA chapter to ignite new, fresh, and innovative ideas.
A two-time graduate of Florida Atlantic University having received both her undergraduate and MBA in Business Administration with a concentration in International Marketing, Heather studied abroad in Lisbon, Portugal and Florianopolis, Brazil.
In addition to her professional duties, Heather is a happily married mother of three and a certified doula, encouraging and nurturing expectant mothers throughout the region. In 2020, her company Laissez Faire was a presenting sponsor of The Art of Birthing, a national holistic experience that included provocative workshops, a birth justice film festival, and other experiential virtual events to increase awareness about birth options, empowered birth, perinatal outcomes and disparities, and solutions.