If you ask a 20-something about their priorities in this life era, most will give you an answer along the lines of, “The twenties are for me!” Ellena Woodhams isn’t your typical 20-something. The young Marketing Director of Fresno Acura, Mercedes-Benz of Modesto, Modesto Subaru, and Honda of Morgan Hill has squarely positioned philanthropy at the core of her wellness mantra. Add in a yoga class, trying new eats, a pool, nature, home-sweet-home, Mario Badescu, green tea, and a bi-weekly manicure and you have Elle’s recipe for early adult wellness.
Spread the joy.
Elle was raised in the business of car dealerships, but she had no intentions of joining the family business until her mother asked her to come start something new right after she graduated from California State University, Fresno—she obtained her degree in International Business, but had a natural knack for marketing. “Our company didn’t have a true Marketing Department before I joined the ranks. I’ve been able to grow personally while building our public image and recognizable campaigns to what they are today.” She is referring to over a dozen outreach projects that touch the communities of their family-run dealerships, stretching as far north as Morgan Hill. “Working in a family business means that my job is a direct reflection of how I was raised, and the person I have come to be today. I spend a majority of my time on the Marketing and Public Relations side of things, so I’m usually out in the community working on various philanthropic projects. Being able to spread a little joy or love every day is truly a gift.”
Working in working-out.
Running all things marketing for four dealerships across California keeps Elle busy. Yoga is part of her solution to maintaining sanity post-graduation. “Graduating from Fresno State meant that I would no longer have a consistent workout routine as a student athlete. I had to adjust my habits to fit my new lifestyle ... My favorite place to workout is now the yoga studio. I feel like I can actually breathe and ground myself before I have to rejoin the crazy, hectic schedule I keep every day.”
Part of what fulfills Elle in her personal time is a passion for food. “I love being able to cook and try new recipes on my own. My boyfriend is a good sport and always tries my concoctions without hesitation. We live in the Tower District, so we’re able to discover new cultural cuisines from restaurants and food trucks in downtown Fresno or Gazebo Gardens. Whether it’s a brick-and-mortar establishment or on four wheels, we are always up for a new culinary adventure. Balance and moderation is key when it comes to food choices.”
While happiness is oftentimes served on a plate, Elle never underestimates the power of family time…and a pool. “In this Fresno heat, happiness is a nice, refreshing pool. For me, fill that pool with my family and closest friends and I couldn’t be happier. Maybe add in a refreshing beverage.”
The call of the wild.
And when the pool isn’t enough… “Head into nature! Whether it’s the mountains or the beach, my happy place is where I have no cell service. We are so fortunate to live in a place like the Central Valley and be so close to the majestic Sierra Nevadas and the Pacific Ocean. I spent a lot of my childhood in the mountains, so I’m definitely partial to the wilderness.”
When in home.
“If I’m at home, I have one of those gel eye masks that you can keep in the freezer. I love being able to put that on and follow it with a Mario Badescu facial mask. I might occasionally indulge in a glass of champagne to pair with the duo.”
At the ready.
Speaking of Mario Badescu, Elle uses are more than one of his products, as well as a daily spritz of scent and a bit of green goodness:
1. Mario Badescu Glycolic Foaming Cleanser
2. Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium fragrance
3. Starbucks Teavana® Shaken Unsweetened Green Tea
You wouldn’t know that Elle is a nature girl by the way she presents her person—with mile-high legs and a polished aesthetic, this woman values every second of the “me time” she makes. “There is nothing better than my bi-weekly ritual of getting my nails done. I’m not allowed to have my phone for the majority of the time and I’ve definitely fallen asleep in the salon chair before.”
Now or never.
“Don’t wait until you are ‘ready.’ There is only now, and now is as good a time as any. So, get to work!”
Photographer Ellie Koleen with Ellie Koleen Photography
Managing Editor Lauren Barisic
Makeup Juan Salcedo with Luxe Salon & Spa
Hair Anna K. Peters with re:TREAT color+hair design studio