Carol Aebersold is the co-author of The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Tradition, and the mother of Christa Pitts and Chanda Bell. To many children (and many of her employees), she is nothing less than a direct line to Santa—and that is especially clear during the holiday season, when Aebersold travels for as much as 7 weeks to do as many as 100 events in support of The Elf on the Shelf.
Aebersold taught music for the majority of her adult life, and that experience stood her in good stead in her role as an executive producer of “An Elf’s Story” in 2011. Aebersold co-wrote the special’s original songs, “Each and Every Christmas,” as well as “Extravaganzalorious.”
This year, Aebersold is taking the brand global by hosting readings and book signings in Australia, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and at military bases across the U.S. She also enjoys writing, motivational speaking, supporting community theatre groups, and staying in direct contact with Santa Claus.
Chanda Bell is one of the true visionaries behind the best-selling book, The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Tradition. A former reading and English teacher, her ability to hone in on the desires of the American consumer to create more meaningful family moments led her to co-found CCA and B (Creatively Classic Activities and Books) along with her mom, Carol and twin sister, Christa in 2005.
In 2010, Chanda was named the Georgia Small Business Person of the Year by the Small Business Administration. She was also named a finalist for the 2010 Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year. In 2011 she was awarded the University of West Georgia’s spotlight award and in 2012 she received the Young Alumnus of the Year award for Reinhardt University.
In 2011, “The Elf on the Shelf: An Elf’s Story” debuted as an animated Christmas Special. Chanda served as Executive Producer on the project and co-wrote the script. She even penned the words to one of the musical numbers after co-founding the production company that produced the special, Big Canoe Entertainment.
She is a graduate of The University of West Georgia with a degree in Middle Grades Education and calls Georgia home. She is married and has two children. She is actively involved in her church and in her community to raise money for causes close to her heart: The Path Project, The Atlanta Union Mission, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.
Christa Pitts is the business mind in the family owned and operated company that created The Elf on the Shelf. Before joining forces with her sister and mother, Pitts spent five years as one of the most beloved hosts on QVC, where her warmth and upbeat personality made her a household name.
In 2005, Pitts launched Creatively Classic Activities and Books (CCA and B, LLC) with her twin sister, Chanda Bell, and mother, Carol Aebersold. Pitts joined as Co-CEO to focus on building partnerships, licensing, and strategic vision. In addition, she took on the worlds of marketing, sales, IP development and protection, and legal affairs. To date, The Elf on the Shelf has sold over 2.5 million copies in North America, and 2012 will see further expansion into new markets around the world.
Pitts was instrumental in developing Big Canoe Entertainment, the production team that created the 2011 animated special, “The Elf on the Shelf: An Elf’s Story.” As one of the executive producers, she helped bring the Christmas special to fruition, and engineered the launch and distribution strategy that turned The Elf on the Shelf into an animated holiday classic.
CCA and B is a highly philanthropic organization, and it focuses its resources on groups and activities promoting childhood health, literacy and education. In 2011, in association with Big Canoe Entertainment, Pitts and her family donated 100% of the net proceeds from the world premiere of “An Elf’s Story” to Atlanta’s premiere healthcare provider for kids—Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. In 2012, Pitts offered up her expertise and that of her staff to support The Path Project, a non-profit designed to help children in impoverished trailer-park communities to get the mentoring, tutoring, and emotional support necessary to graduate from high school.
Pitts was recently included in Georgia Trend magazine’s “40 under 40” list. She was named the Georgia Small Business Person of the Year by the Small Business Association (an honor she shares with her mom and sister.) She helped CCA and B find its place on the Inc.’s 500/5,000 list and was named an Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist in 2010.