Chelsie Paine is going up against the big boys with Pinky’s Valet and her all-female crew.
Chelsie Paine always knew that she wanted to own her own business; she just didn’t think it would be a valet parking company. The 26-year-old is the entrepreneur behind Pinky’s Valet—the first and only all-female valet crew in Dallas. Just don’t expect that to mean a sexed-up version of the service.
“There’s nothing provocative or sleazy about us,” Paine says. “We are very professional.”
The company’s 50 valets typically sport a classic preppy look, or they’ll add touches to match a specific event theme. For many, the gig is just a fun, part-time job. The Pinky’s crew includes teachers, college athletes, business professionals, and even two attorneys.
After working as an executive assistant to the CEO of a television network in Palm Springs, Calif., Paine returned to Dallas in 2006. She took a job at Razorgator, a ticket broker, while also working as a part-time valet. After Razorgator closed its Dallas office, Paine began to focus solely on valet.
She discovered that although there were all-female valet companies in other major markets like Los Angeles and Atlanta, the concept hadn’t yet been tried in Dallas. So she bought a few supplies and a $1 million insurance policy and, along with her business partner, Jill Reynolds, launched Pinky’s in August 2009.
The risk seems to be paying off. Besides providing valet service for area nonprofits and event planners—including the Resource Center Dallas, Youth First Texas, and Marc Events—Pinky’s recently inked deals with Chaucers and BlackFinn restaurants.
Paine says she isn’t worried about competition from Dallas valet stalwarts like Jack Boles, Lonestar, RP Valet, and Gold Crown. “I believe that I’ve created my own market for Pinky’s Valet in Dallas,” she says. “My mission is to give people in Dallas a different impression of a valet. I want them to look at female valets differently and know that a female can do anything a male can do.”