The 39th anniversary of the Great Lady/Great Gentleman Awards presented by East Jefferson General Hospital Auxiliary rounded up luncheon legions at the Audubon Tea Room; the Tulane University Women’s Association invited cohorts to the Southern Yacht Club for a “Celebrate Spring” luncheon and laurels; and, with a nod to “Guys and Dolls,” Holy Cross School made a play at the campus for an evening of “dining, dancing and gambling.”
The ‘Greats’ Rate!
At the Audubon Tea Room, limelight targeted the recipients of the Great Lady/Great Gentleman Awards, which had First NBC Bank as the lead sponsor. Rating hearty applause were Harriet Aguiar-Netto, Ph.D., Raquelle “Kelly” Badeaux-Phillips, Anita Brite, James D. Garvey Jr., Dr. Jane Cagan Miller, Doris Rappold, Marilyn Mayhall Richoux, and Carol Short. They were joined at their tables by family and choicest chums, along with, at peripheral tables, hundreds of well-wishers. Many of them had been at the patron party two days before at the Lakefront home of Debbie and Pete Buchler.
The centerpieces at the luncheon were furnished by various nursing departments of the hospital. Made of seashells in a blue fish net, the winning centerpiece was done by the Oncology Department Nursing Team. When people sat for luncheon fare, they enjoyed Romaine and tomato salad with mozzarella cheese, stuffed chicken breast, and an ice cream parfait. Various wines were available to complement the meal.
All the festive while, guests popped up from their seats to survey the auction boards and tables, where art work, jewelry, restaurant packages and a sequined evening coat beckoned the bucks.
In addition to the “Greats,” there were the luncheon’s luminaries: event Chairwoman Sharon Marchand and honoree liaison Jo Ann Bohm, and, to chair the committees, Lee Baraldi and Willie LaNasa (auction), Rosalie Edwards (reservations) and Coleen Perilloux Landry (publicity). Coleen is proud to say that the only mother-daughter team to have held the presidency of the auxiliary in its 42 years is that of Coleen (1999-2000, at the turn of the century and millennium) and Katherine “Kathy” Landry, 2014-2015. The weekend before the brunch, Katherine was the radiant mother of the groom, Christopher Eckhardt, who swapped vows with Selina Mortillaro at St. Joseph’s Church. The reception was at The Balcony.
Additional names to know at the “GL/GG” gathering were First NBC Bank President and CEO Ashton Ryan Jr. and spouse/auxiliary Treasurer Jolene, and program principals: Kathy Landry for the welcome, the Rev. Randy P. Roux, Sharon Marchand, EJGH President and CEO Dr. Mark Peters, and master of ceremonies Mark C. Romig, president of New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corp. and the “Voice of the Saints.” Roger H. Ogden of the second-tier Supporters category (the one after Hospital Benefactor First NBC Bank) was unable to attend. His contribution honored auxiliary President Katherine. The latter was also in the Supporters listing, along with individuals Mr. and Mrs. Mark Brewer, Mr. and Mrs. James D. Garvey Jr., Doris Rappold, and Henry and Pat Shane.
Noted, too, were Beverly Watts, Irene Rogillio, Marguerite Ricks with Charlie, auxiliary President-elect Carol Becklehimer, Darlene and Kevin Landry, Roger Villere, Maria and Robert Winn, Elgin Landry (with Coleen), Gertrude Beauford, Ginger Crawford, Kathi Zimmerman, Ann Duffy, Carol Porter, Paulette and Frank Stewart, Jean Rice, Kit and Fred Lipps, and birthday girl Phyllis Stacy and Ed, who gave her a beautiful orchid plant before the luncheon.
Throughout the partying, the Arnie Johnson Trio rendered scintillating sounds. In fact, toward the end of the event, the call to dance pulled several couples to the floor for some lively midday stepping.
At the Southern Yacht Club, the Tulane University Women’s Association relished good companionship framed by mealtime meeting and greeting. Awards, too, with the prestigious Jane S. Longenecker Award (named in memory of the wife of a former TU president, Herbert Longenecker) to Doris Baron, and the Honorary Lifetime Membership to Tupper Allen, TUWA treasurer. The presenters were Jewelynn Nice and Molly Keenan. Doris’ husband, John, was credited for the entertainment, which was rendered by Jessie McBride and LaTasha Bundy. In their words of gratitude for their honors, Tupper said that all in attendance wanted to support Tulane and that “When you are in TUWA you have friendships that last a lifetime.” Doris expressed her thanks and the desire “to carry on the legacy of the Longeneckers.”
Additional features were the gorgeous lilies arranged by Nancy and Molly Turner and the menu of catfish amandine or rosemary grilled chicken, pasta primavera, and bread pudding. All delicious.
Matesa Gago-Luu, TUWA co-president, opened the formalities, which were closed after a while by Co-President Staci Sundmaker. Additional officers are Tupper Allen, Secretaries Susan Kelley (recording) and Ruth Olivera (corresponding), and President-Elect Jennifer Clarke. The board members at large number two dozen with most in attendance.
Among those breaking bread were Maria Daly, Barbara Knill, Molly Keenan, Stella Bowers, Anita Wolf-Jobson, Mary Ellen Nice, Julianne Nice, Debbie Nice, Norris Williams, Pam Rogers, Suzanne Russsell, and Fergie Lewis, talking up a trip to New York, as was Marlane Drake. Quite a few of them sported the handsome TUWA pin designed by India Stewart.
n Luck Be a Tiger Tonight!
Not only were poker, blackjack, craps and roulette tables part of the enticements on the invitation to the Holy Cross Gold & Blue Gala, but so were dining, dancing, the $10,000 super raffle and the 50/50 raffle, and live and silent auctions.
The gala gambol kicked off at 6:00 p.m. in the Student Center Atrium, where patrons had a culinary treat: a mozzarella demonstration by Amici Ristorante & Bar and chef Jasper Mirabile Jr. The restaurant, as well as 12 Seasonings Catering, purveyed.
Some of the live auction attractions and their purchasers were “Dinner for Eight” given by Susan Spicer and bought by Michael Silva; “Egg Art” by John Lamouranne, Dana and Leo Palazzo; Trip to Florence, Italy, “won” by Leo Palazzo and Capt. Mark “Trippy” Delesdernier; bronze sculpture by Ronnie Wells, Denise and Jeb Berges; trip to Hollywood, California, “won” by Elise Lee; and “Dinner with the Headmaster” at Antoine’s, Steve Algero.
The decorations made gaming their goal, thanks to tables covered with red and black sequined cloths, tall illuminated cylinder vases as centerpieces, and large dice used throughout the food stations.
Headliners included event Chaircouple Jack and Sissy Rizzuto, master of ceremonies Jay Galle, Holy Cross headmaster Charles DiGange with Myra, and 19 honorary chairmen, most all alumni (as are many of the above). Trying their “Tiger” luck, too, were UNO President Peter Fos, Ph.D., and Lori, Drs. Anne Marie and Rudolph Linhuber, Vanessa and Wayne Leone, Lee Giorgio, Donald Palmer, Marifrances and Stephen Breaux, Greta and Capt. Carey Johnson, Lisa and Jorge Lauriano, Adele and Louis Meyer, Dana and Leo Palazzo, Melanie and Trippy Delesdernier, Dr. Kim and Billy Tolar, and Karen Lorenz and Louis Gurvich Jr.
Weathered, billed as “one of the most electrifying cover groups to come out of the New Orleans area, balancing all genres of music” stepped forward to entertain. The Tiger throng stormed the dance floor.