Citigroup Executive Vice President Candi Wolff can talk about Christmas trees for hours. She can tell you how an electric tree baler works, the difference between a Colorado Blue Spruce and a Douglas Fir, and that tree sales are a year-end economic indicator, although she can’t quite tell you why.
Bloomberg reports that Wolff can also recall the times former Vice President Dick Cheney and former President George W. Bush would phone while she was working on her family’s Christmas tree farm in Round Hill, Virginia.
'I’d say, ‘Hold on, I’m out selling trees, hold on!', she said in an interview. 'And I’d run somewhere where I could actually have a conversation'.
Wolff, 48, Citigroup’s head of global government affairs and a former assistant to Bush for legislative affairs, has been escaping the Beltway - literally and figuratively - for Snickers Gap Tree Farm every winter since 1994. That’s when she met her hydrogeologist husband, Mark Wolff, whose father started planting trees on the 40-acre farm in 1981.
The mountainside farm 55 miles from the White House provides a welcome break from Wolff’s corner office on Pennsylvania Avenue, she says. There, she directs a staff of 42 and oversees Citi’s relations with more than 100 governments, including the U.S. Aside from the poinsettia on her office coffee table, you might not know that the lobbyist, named one of Washington’s 25 most influential women in 2012 by the National Journal, is also a Christmas tree aficionado.
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