Faith Ann Bailes
In the late 1990s when tea awareness in the U.S. didn't reach much beyond big brands on grocery store shelves, Faith Ann Bailes had a vision of how tea shops and tearooms offering specialty teas could thrive. And she quickly realized that education was the key and a first-hand experience with whole leaf teas was necessary.
Take Me To Tea
Her first ambitious goal was to create a trade show exclusively for the tea industry. She studied the market and spent several years networking with tea growers, associations, exporters, importers, retailers and anyone dealing with tea-related items to sell her concept. In 2003, the first “Take Me 2 Tea Expo” in Las Vegas, Nevada, was launched and the world of tea was successfully united under one roof. That first show attracted more than a hundred exhibitors and nearly two thousand attendees.
Of note,"Take Me 2 Tea" was reconfigured slightly and renamed, World Tea Expo after two years when Faith pursued other adventures in the specialty tea industry and George Jage continued.
Faith Ann Bailes, John Harney and Mim Enck at World Tea Expo
After she sold her interest in Take Me 2 Tea, she began freelancing, working with International Tea Importers, local restaurants, and the Specialty Tea Institute, and writing for some publications with education always her priority.
Faith continues to work with the U.S. Tea Association and their educational program, STI, in addition to independent sales and marketing consultant.