2017-08 August Newsletter

Ennead’s Monthly Newsletter
2017 Edition
: Peggy Fitzgerald

Richard Raichelson, Chairman

This is my final comment as Chairman. I truly appreciate the chance to have served as Chair of Ennead’s board this past year. When you work in this capacity, you get to appreciate the number of people it takes to organize and set-up events, offer their homes for various activities, and to volunteer. They have been mentioned in these comments over the past year. The various committees are listed on page 5 in the Directory. You don’t have to be a member of the board to help. The board and I thank each of you, as should the general membership. The new board will be looking for help in the coming year. Please consider their needs.

The end to the Carnival season came when our royalty gathered for a dinner at LaMora Simpson’s home. Gifts were exchanged and toasts made in honor of our royalty who spent much time in representing Ennead this past year. It is a great honor to be chosen, and one that brings lasting friendships for years to come.

The month began with a Pool Party at the home of Kathy Kulp, although no one used the pool. Don Harants picked up the hamburgers and hotdogs, and cooked everything on an outside grill carted to the gathering by Steve Grushkin. Don Davis brought the slaw and beans. Members were responsible for the liquid refreshment for over 50 members and their guests. Many came dressed in July 4th style. Paola High won the best decorated flip-flops contest, which had tiny American flags projecting from each shoe.

Happy Hour, organized by Jim Sharpe, took place at The Kitchen in Shelby Farms. Twenty-Eight members and two guests gathered on the porch that overlooked a lake, walking trails, and the like. Very beautiful setting. A major rain storm forced several of us to seek shelter in the main building. The wine party at Ann Manning’s was attended by 39 members plus 6 guests. We squeezed together to enjoy wonderful food and ample wine.

Liza Monaghan hosted Rummikub, while John Goodyear entertained 10 players for Poker. Dinner seekers found theirs at Amerigo’s. After several months hiatus, Yvonne Fournier returned to book two films for Movie Night – Spider Man and The Big Sick. Book Club continued at the home of Peggy Edwards with a read of Opal by Diane Thomas-Plunk who also was present at the meeting. The setting is 1950s rural Mississippi with Opal Pratt as a reclusive spinster.

It is with much regret that I report that Stacey Montgomery found it necessary to resign his board position after one year of service. The remainder of his term will be filled by Bill McMurtray. Stacey’s job and personal matters were the culprit. He sent a letter of resignation that was presented to the board at our July 6 meeting to be effective immediately. The board voted to accept Bill McMurtray as his replacement, whose position would begin August 1. Stacey was Chair of the Rules Committee and had coordinated the Cultural Arts program. Bill is a long-time member of Ennead who served as King in 1996 and Chair in 2013.

Finally, we wish Judith Johnstone, who is also the current Queen of Phoenix, and Jim Sharpe the best in recovering from their illness. Both are now at home and doing well.

See you at the Annual Business Meeting,



Ray Curl
Sponsor:  Mary Pat Custer


Stacey Montgomery found it necessary, after serving one year, to resign his position on the board. According to Article IV, Section 8, a resigning board member should submit his resignation to the Chairman who will present it to the board. This was done at their July 6 meeting. During this meeting, the board voted to name Bill McMurtray to fill Stacey’s second year term, beginning
August 1. Also see the Chairman’s Comments.


(All Members)

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Pickering Center
7771 Poplar Pike
Memphis, Tennessee 38138
 5:30 pm – Registration/Cocktails
6:00 pm – Business Meeting

Following the Business Meeting, there will be a PARTY with dinner provided by Coletta’s.


The Ennead Board consists of six women and six men. Each Board member is elected to serve a 2-year term. Every year, half of the Board members “roll off” leaving vacancies for three women and three men to be elected at the Annual Meeting held in August. Thank you to this year’s departing Board Members for devoting two years of their time and service to the business of Ennead:  Jim Frommel, John Goodyear, Paola High, Pat McWilliams, and LaMora Simpson with a special thank you to Richard Raichelson, 2016-2017 Chairman.

Members remaining on the Board for the upcoming year are: Marty Alberg, Vickie Carwell, Peggy Fitzgerald, Steve Grushkin, and Jim Sharpe (Stacey Montgomery resigned his position and Bill McMurtray was elected by the Board to serve for the remainder of Stacey’s term).

An election for six positions (3 women & 3 men) will be held on Saturday, August 5 at the Annual Business Meeting.  If you will not be available to attend, you may request an absentee ballot and one will be mailed or emailed to you so that you may cast your votes.  The completed ballot must be received by Richard Raichelson, Chairman or Paola High, Secretary no later than Wednesday, August 2, 2017 prior to the Annual Business Meeting either via regular mail or by email.  The official mailing address for an absentee ballot is:

 The Grand Krewe of Ennead
P.O. Box 172165
Memphis, TN 38187-2165

To email absentee ballots, send to:  Paola High, pqhigh@gmail.com

In preparation for voting, please review the candidate bios listed below:

Paula DeStefanis
Born and raised in Memphis–first experience with Cotton Carnival was going to parades and the riverfront to see calliope as a child. At that time, there was a big parade down Main Street. Cotton Carnival (now Carnival Memphis) was exciting back in the day, and still fun now!

Currently serving on Ennead’s Membership Committee, I also assist with registration and decorating at various Ennead events. I was a participant in Ennead’s skit for the 2017 Black Tie & Tennis Shoes and have been involved in many other Carnival and Ennead activities.

I am a musician, I taught Suzuki Piano and started a Kindermusik business with 8 locations around the city. I also sing in the choir and am actively involved and serve on committees and boards at my church. I retired from my job, to become a nanny to my granddaughter when she was born (best job I ever had) and when she began PreK, I was asked to teach at her school on a part-time basis. Without hesitation I said YES!!!

I have a Masters degree from Memphis State University in General Counseling and Personnel Services and previously owned a career counseling business. I also have an insurance license.

I have been a counselor, music teacher, and legal assistant and served on several boards and as president in private organizations. I believe my varied skills, education and experience will be an asset to the Ennead Board and if elected, I will be honored to serve.

Connie Spencer
I, Connie Spencer am excited to have been asked to run for the Ennead board of directors. I would love the opportunity to serve & make a difference for the betterment of this great krewe.

In my professional career I manage about 3000 contingent workers for Nike. My management & organizational skills would be a great asset to the board.

Since joining Ennead I’ve been active in BTTS, served as your decorating chairperson & this year had the honor of representing Ennead as a 2017 Duchess. It has been a wonderful year.

Please vote for me, Connie Spencer, I appreciate your vote.
Thank you

Carol Wasielewski
I have been encouraged by many friends to run for a position on the Board of Ennead. I value the opportunity to serve an organization that has welcomed me since joining a couple years ago. Engagement in an organization is very important to me. Since joining I have participated by working on registration, attending wine parties, assisted in decorating for events, chaired catering and poker. I also had the opportunity to take on a leadership role directing the karaoke skit this year and assisting with the choreography for Black Tie Tennis Shoe. I Appreciate the opportunities Ennead has for the members and utilize these opportunities to gain new friendships.

I am originally from Massachusetts where I earned a BS from American International and an MBA from Western New England University. Fifteen years ago, my career brought me to Collierville where I currently reside with my four- legged child, a dog named Nutmeg. I have been employed by International Paper for 35 years in various financial roles. I have also had experience in the food and beverage industry, the grocery business and have owned and operated a successful clothing boutique. My work has also afforded me the opportunity to travel the US, Canada and Europe. My personal interests include travel, boating, golf, cultural arts and supporting charitable organizations. In addition to being a member of Ennead, I am also a member of STARS.

If I am elected, I will bring my leadership and engagement skills to the position in order to represent the members to strengthen the organizations future.

David Brockmann
I would be pleased to serve on the Ennead Board if elected. I have been an active member for many years and have served in many different roles. In 1991, I served on the Royal Court as Ennead’s very first Flagman. I was a Board member for two years in 1992-1993 and a Duke in 1995 and had the privilege of serving in that role more recently in 2016.

Over the years, I have attended many coronations and activities hosted by other Krewes and participated in Black Tie & Tennis Shoes skits, Karaoke, and St. Patrick’s Day parades while continuing to be involved in Ennead events. As a result, I believe I can bring a unique combination of experience, understanding, and insight to the Board and will work to assure that Ennead continues to grow as a Krewe.

Don Davis
I feel very honored to be asked to run for the Ennead board. I have been a member for nearly four years, and during this time have developed an interest in contributing to the organizational structure that supports Ennead’s goals and activities.

My professional background is in Law enforcement, beginning in Shelby County Government’s General Sessions Court. I then went to the Shelby County Sheriff’s Department, where I have been involved in almost every division. During this time, I worked for the Attorney General’s Office for a number of years in an Undercover capacity. At present, I am in the Detective Division as a fraud and financial crimes investigator.

I have been proud to represent Ennead as a Duke in the Royal Court, and believe the understanding of Carnival gained from this experience will enable me to better serve Ennead as a Board Member. I feel very strongly that every member of Ennead should have opportunity to express his or her opinions and that the Board has a responsibility to represent those viewpoints to the best of its ability. We all need to work hard to discover ways to improve our activities and to attract new members and to improve the krewe.

Thank you very much for your consideration.

Randy West
I am honored to have been asked to run for the Ennead Board. I became a member of Ennead in November of 2015. Since that time, I have been very active by participating and assisting in many different Carnival and Ennead events such as Black Tie & Tennis Shoes skits, St. Patrick’s Day floats, Halloween parties and Ennead’s regular monthly activities.

This year, I had the privilege of serving as one of the Queen’s Royal Guards and gained a new insight into Carnival Season. Through these activities and owning my own business over the past several years, I have acquired the type of experience and understanding that I believe will be beneficial to the Ennead Board and to the Krewe.

If I am elected, I will make every effort to continue and support time-honored traditions as well as seek new ways to serve and grow the membership of the Grand Krewe of Ennead.

Thank you for your consideration.

Nominations from the Floor: Additional nominations will be accepted from the floor at the Annual Meeting though such a nomination requires a petition signed by at least twenty (20) members of the Krewe.

  2           Paula Wyatt

  5           Bob Laurie

  5           Tayloe Nickey

20           Shirley Tilton

22           Ross Phillips

24           Carol Wasielewski